FIFA Confederations Cup-2017: Ballet, pop stars & folk dances as Russia welcomes in Saint-Petersburg

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017: Ballet, pop stars & folk dances as Russia welcomes in Saint-Petersburg

The 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup has kicked off in the iconic Russian city of St. Petersburg, with a ceremony showing off folk and contemporary Russian culture.

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

The opening ceremony turned the St. Petersburg Arena into the setting for a spectacular and bright show, with more than 2,000 actors involved in the performance.

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

A ballerina in a crimson dress, joined by a famous character from Russian fairytales, the Tsarevich, lit up a magic forest with their dance, while a number of Russian pop stars gave new life to folk songs, performing them in never-heard-before versions.

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

The “khorovod” traditional Russian round dance and funfair with more characters from Russian folklore were also featured in the ceremony.

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

The cup's mascot, Zabivaka the Wolf, made a spectacular appearance, descending into the arena on a cloud-turned-air balloon.

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

The four Russian cities that will host the eighth Confederations Cup – St. Petersburg, Moscow, Kazan and Sochi – were represented at the event.



FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

Along with Team Russia, they will welcome teams from seven countries: New Zealand, Portugal, Mexico (Group A); and Germany, Chile, Cameroon and Australia (Group B).

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

Russian President Vladimir Putin, together with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, as well as FIFA President Gianni Infantino, attended the opening ceremony and the cup's first game, which saw Russia beat New Zealand 2-0.

FIFA Confederations Cup-2017 Opening, Saint-Petersburg

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