The spectacular opening ceremony of the INVICTUS GAMES DÜSSELDORF 2023 presented by Boeing was the first highlight of the Games for the competitors.
All of the 21 nations entered the sold-out MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA amid the applause of the 20,000 spectators. The soundtrack for marching in was chosen by the participating nations themselves. With these selected hits, the competitors entered the stage of the Invictus Games.
Australia: “Down Under”, Men at Work
The Australian team chose the song “Down Under” by Men at Work, a real Aussie classic. The song reached the Top 10 in many countries around the world in 1981, stayed on the US charts for four consecutive weeks and sold more than two million copies in the US alone.
Belgium: “Warriors”, Oscar and the Wolf
The Belgian team chose the song “Warrior” by the electropop project “Oscar and the Wolf” for marching in. The song is well-known in a sports context as the official song of the Belgian national team for the World Cup in Qatar. In 2022, the single album was a number 1 hit in Belgium.
Canada: “Ordinary Day”, Great Big Sea
The Canadian team entered the stage of the Invictus Games to the song “Ordinary Day” by the Newfoundland music group “Great Big Sea.” The single from 1997 reached the 3rd place on the Canadian Adult Contemporary Tracks chart and the 30th place on the Top Singles charts.
Colombia: “La Invitacion”, Jorge Celedon
Jorge Celedon’s “La Invitacion” was used by the Colombian Armed Forces in 2009 to mark the 210th anniversary of Colombia’s independence, celebrating the “heroes of solidarity” in the face of the Covid-19 epidemic.
Denmark: „Get Lucky“, Daft Punk
Denmark marched in to one of the biggest earworms of the past decade: “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk ft. Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers. The French duo’s collaboration with music god Nile Rodgers and Pharrell Williams reached number one in 34 countries and spent five consecutive weeks at number two on the US Billboard Hot 100, which was Daft Punk’s first top 10 hit in the United States.
Estonia: “Kastehein”, Nublu
The small Estonian team entered the stage of the Invictus Games with the song “Kastehein” by the band “Nublu.” The electro-pop song deals with the dangers that threaten free societies. Due to the common border with Russia, this threat is a very real danger in Estonia.
France: “La Goffa Lolita”, La Petite Culotte
The Invictus Games began for the French team with an atmospheric song full of good humour and sun-soaked happiness. The summer hit “La Goffa Lolita” by “La Petite Culotte” captivates with its danceable rhythm paired with flamenco and salsa elements.
Georgia: “Uptown Funk”, Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars
Also highly danceable is the Georgian choice “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars. The 2014 single album topped the charts in 19 countries, reached the Top 10 in 15 other countries and spent 14 consecutive weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100.
Germany: Invictus, Mazibora
The German team marched into the Invictus Games with the song “Invictus”. The song was written by veteran Stephan Kremer aka Mazibora especially for the German team. The song shall give war veterans a voice and serve as therapy, as contribution to coping with the past and to clarification, but also as encouragement.
Israel: “Happy”, Pharrel Williams
“Happy” by Pharrel Williams was the song chosen by the Israeli team for their debut at the Invictus Games. The global hit was the most successful song of 2014 with 13.9 million units worldwide, and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song as part of the soundtrack to the film “Despicable Me 2”. The accompanying music video won the Grammy Award for Best Music Video.
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