I think it is interesting to compare the opening closing ceremonies of the olympics. The opening ceremony was a representation of our past, whereas the closing ceremony was much more about our future, and what a contrast there was between the two.
The opening ceremony showed the achievements of man over the last few centuries and the rise of the British Empire. The closing ceremony was far more about working together as a global community, it was about co-operation rather than competition.
It was very interesting to note the absence of the Queen. The Telegraph reported that “The Queen will not attend tonight’s closing ceremony, as Buckingham Palace said there was no official role for a Head of State in the ceremony”, whereas The Daily Mail said later that “Prince Harry was launched into a new leading role in the royal family last night when he took centre stage at the Olympic closing ceremony. In his most important solo Royal engagement yet”. The two statements appear to conflict with each other and the sudden absence of the Queen appeared to be unexpected. One of the closing speeches seemed not to have been changed to reflect the situation and opened by addressing “your Majesty”.