Top moments from the Closing Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games

Tokyo has bid farewell to the Paralympic Games in a spectacular Closing Ceremony full of colour, diversity and flair.

Picture by 2021 Getty Images

After 12 days of competition across 22 sports with 4,400 athletes from 161 National Paralympic Committees (NPCs) showing the world their incredible skills, talent and indomitable spirit, the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games has officially come to an end with the Closing Ceremony on Sunday 5 September.

As the Paralympic flame was extinguished at the Olympic Stadium, Tokyo bid farewell to the Paralympic Games and handed the baton over to Paris 2024.

In a Closing Ceremony full of colour and flair, the significance of unity and diversity was the centrefold of proceedings as Tokyo handed over the Paralympic flag to the next host city Paris.

So let's take a look at the top moments from the Closing Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

8. What A Wonderful World (4)
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

The Magic of the Paralympic Games

The beginning sequences of the Closing Ceremony began with a story of a boy who has fallen under the spell of the Paralympic Effect. The boy, who previously thought differently of impaired people, changed his perceptions after witnessing the Paralympic Games. Throughout the scene we saw him become inspired by Paralympians.

Standing in the middle of the famous Shibuya Scramble, the boy's music spread the Paralympic effect to all those around him. The Olympic Stadium then erupted in a firework display featuring the colour of the Agitos symbol - red, blue and green.

1. The Magic Of The Paralympics (1)
Picture by 2021 Getty Images
1. The Magic Of The Paralympics 
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Entrance of Japan's national flag and the national anthem

The national flag of Japan was carried inside the Olympic Stadium by two-time Paralympic gold medallist SATO Tomoki, Para swimmer KOIKE Sakura, Japan's 100m T37 national record holder IWAKIRI Motoki, Japan's youngest ever Paralympic medallist YAMADA Yuki, Olympic fencer MINOBE Kazuyasu and nurse YAMAMOTO Keiko.

It was then raised by Japan's Self-Defense Forces as the national anthem of Japan was sung by the Kodomo no Shiro Chorus.

closing ceremony global
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Nation's flags enter the stadium

As the flag bearers entered the Olympic Stadium, buildings and flowers begin to emerge to create a "City Where Differences Shine". Led by performers to the Tokyo's famous SkyTree, the Paralympians were asked to stick mirrors onto the SkyTree - reflecting the light athletes illuminate while competing.

As the flags and flagbearers entered the stadium, the images of artworks by artists with impairments residing in Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima - prefectures heavily affected by the 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami - were projected onto the field.

Then a big surprise came our way with Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic mascots Miraitowa and Someity making a surprise appearance to help lift SkyTree to create the "City Where Differences Shine".

3. After The Games (2)
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Global Closing Ceremony
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3. After The Games - (1)
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

A special thank-you to volunteers

Without the support of the Field and City Cast volunteers, the success of Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games wouldn't have been possible. So as a token of gratitude for their tireless efforts over the past 12 days, on behalf of all 24,514 Cast members of the Paralympic Games, six volunteers received Victory bouquets on behalf of all the volunteers - the same bouquets presented to athletes during the Victory Ceremony.

The "City Where Differences Shine" comes to life

The “City Where Differences Shine” is brought to life by the power of Paralympians through an array of materials and colours in various shapes and sizes whilst performers parade their love for their own creativity.

It was a 'harmonious cacophony' of performances from the wonderland-esque world that featured acrobatic performers to jazz-style music whilst the music transitioned as a band of percussionists entered. Finally, as all performers came together, a galaxy slowly stretched across the field, unveiling a colourful earth and fire works lighting up the Tokyo night sky.

Global Closing Ceremony
Picture by 2021 Getty Images
Global Closing Ceremony
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Handover ceremony to Paris 2024

As the Paralympic flag was lowered to the sound of the Paralympic anthem, Governor of Tokyo YURIKO Koike handed the flag to the International Paralympic President Andrew Parsons before the Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo received the flag.

The French national anthem, "The Marseillaise" was then performed in sign language by Betty Moutoumalaya.

What followed was a stunning artistic display of hypnotic choreography featuring 128 performers who paid tribute to Para athletes before Prone, an artist who developed ALS in 2015, performed and mixed music using movement of his eyes.

6. To Paris 2024 (4)
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What a wonderful world

Originally performed by the talented Louis Armstrong, "What a Wonderful World" is synonymous with the universal message of love, peace and harmony.

Performed by a diverse group from the artist RIMI's sign-singing and the beautiful vocals from both OKUNO Atsushi and KOSHIO Yuina to the athletes in the stadium and the 62-member cast who auditioned singing along, it was a powerful moment to remind the world about the importance of inclusion and coming together.

And then, at last the Paralympic flame was extinguished as the cauldron closed.

8. What A Wonderful World (5)
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