TEARS and cheers have greeted an early glimpse of the Special Olympics opening ceremony headed to Newcastle later this year.
About 200 people turned out to an official announcement Wednesday which included performances by Newcastle native and ceremony creative director John Foreman with Darren Percival and pianist Stewart Abbott.
Performers Marina Prior, Anthony Callea Brooke McClymont and Darren Percival all attended the launch.
The Newcastle Herald reported Wednesday that those performers as well as Icehouse frontman Iva Davies and Hunter performers Doug Parkinson and Marcia Hines would perform at the December 1 event.
Brooke McClymont, one of several performers who attended the launch, said her group was primed to perform.
‘‘We’re really looking forward to participating in the opening ceremony and seeing athletes from around the world come together in our home country,’’ she said.
The ceremony will mark the official start of the games, which run from November 30 to December 7.
More than 2500 athletes from 32 nations are expected to compete in seven Hunter venues.
Tickets are available through ProTicket on 1300 121 012 or at
The gala ceremony will open the first ever Special Olympics 2013 Asia Pacific Games for athletes with an intellectual disability.
Family tickets are $44 while premium reserve seats begin from $30.