Paris 2024 Paralympic Games key inclusion


Paris 2024 Paralympics opening ceremony at city center Image: Paris 2024

The opening ceremony of the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games will take place in a magnificent setting in the center of Paris (France) – the eastern end of the Champs-Élysées and the adjacent Place de la Concorde – on August 28th, 2024. A total of 4,400 athletes representing 184 delegations from around the world will take part in a parade from the Champs-Élysées to Place de la Concorde, which will be accessible to people of all mobility and ability levels. Similar to the numbers in attendance at traditional, stadium-based ceremonies, 65,000 people will be able to attend the ceremony.

‘Paris 2024’ stated that the Place de la Concorde is an iconic square located between the Champs-Élysées and the Tuileries Gardens, just a stone’s throw from the National Assembly and the Grand Palais. It is the largest square in Paris, surrounded by some of the most important buildings and monuments in French history. Dating back to the Age of Enlightenment, Place de la Concorde forms part of the philosophical, literary and cultural heritage left behind by intellectuals referred to as lumières (meaning ‘lights’), making it an ideal location to shine a spotlight on the Paralympic movement.

The 2024 Summer Paralympics – also known as the 17th Summer Paralympic Games, and commonly known as Paris 2024 Paralympic Games, are an upcoming international multisport parasports event governed by the International Paralympic Committee, to be held in Paris, France, from August 28th to September 8th, 2024.

‘Paris 2024’ further stated that La Concorde and the Champs-Élysées – the most beautiful avenue in the world – will be exquisitely decorated, providing a breathtaking setting to promote the Paralympic movement on a world stage.

Said Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, Minister for Sport and the Olympic and Paralympic Games, “The Game can drive change in ways never seen before. Holding the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games in the City Center – at Place de la Concorde, a powerful symbol of French unity – is a break from tradition that will give everybody a chance to see these athletes, who put on amazing and inspiring performances. It also provides a unique opportunity for us all to change public perceptions of disability.”

Stated Geneviève Darrieussecq, Minister Delegate for People with Disabilities, “France will be hosting its first ever Paralympic Games in 2024, with Paris at the heart of the action. By blowing the Games wide open, we are determined to shine a spotlight on people living with disabilities and their place in the society. Successfully changing how people in France view disability would be a fitting legacy to the Paris Games.”

Opening Ceremony

The opening ceremony will mark the start of innovative Games that will leave a lasting impression on people and celebrate outstanding sporting performances. The Paralympic athletes will be given an opportunity to discover prestigious venues, as the events will be taking place across a range of iconic French heritage sites.

Roland Garros Stadium

This prestigious stadium hosts one of the four Grand Slam tennis tournaments – the French Open. This legendary venue will host the tennis tournaments during the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

Place de la Concorde

The Place de la Concorde, the center of a constellation of iconic Parisian monuments and buildings stretching from the Louvre museum to the Arc de Triomphe, provides a breathtaking setting and is the ideal spot for kicking off the Paralympic Games. The ceremony will be accessible to all, with free tickets available. Four stages will be set up in Place de la Concorde, the largest square in Paris, based on an original configuration that will open the way for various creative possibilities. The stages may or may not be used simultaneously, according to the different lengths of time needed for the various performances and formalities that will make up the opening ceremony.

Thomas Jolly, Artistic Director for the Paris 2024 opening ceremonies, said, “The opening ceremony of the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games is a historic first. The monumental and people-focused nature of the Paralympics is, for me, an incredible source of inspiration. I can’t wait to see the show taking place in the space stretching from the Champs-Elysées to Place de la Concorde. It will transform the center of Paris, with an artistic festival unlike any other, featuring brand new performances and shining a spotlight on Paralympic athletes and the values they embody. The ceremony will bring together those attending in person and everyone watching it on TV all over the world, sharing the unique spirit of the Paralympic Games.”

Inclusion: A Key Games Priority

By highlighting the Paralympic Games through spectacular performances, these Games and their opening ceremony will send an important message out to the whole world – that inclusion is fundamental to our society.

Perle Bouge, a two-time Paralympic rowing medal holder, said, “Discovering the concept for the opening ceremony has filled us all with pride, excitement and determination. I can’t wait to be there and share this momentous occasion with thousands of spectators.”

By celebrating Paralympic athletes, Paris 2024 will harness the power of the Games to change public attitudes towards disabilities and help build a more inclusive society that will go on long after the Paralympics.

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