The 2022 World Cup in Qatar is almost here and we are all looking forward to the best that international football has to offer. But before the ball kicks off for the first time, we will have the opening ceremony first.
In this article, we will take a look at the details regarding the World Cup 2022 opening ceremony, confirmed and potential performers, and other aspects of what we expect to be a grandiose opening to the first winter World Cup in history.
When Will WC 2022 Opening Ceremony Take Place?
As is usually the case, the opening ceremony of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar will take place a few hours before the opening match, in this case between the hosts and Ecuador in Group A. The first game of the tournament is set to kick off at 4 pm GMT on Sunday, November 20th, while the opening ceremony is scheduled for 2 PM GMT on the same day.
Although this match was originally scheduled for next day, for Monday evening, that would mean that we would see two matches from Group B played before the opening ceremony. So, the match was moved to Sunday, along with the opening ceremony of the 2022 World Cup.
Ecuadorean President Guillermo Lasso will not attend his nation’s opening match against Qatar, which is usually the case and a chance for politicians to get a huge PR boost. However, Lasso will miss this high-profile event because of domestic unrest.
Where Will the WC 2022 Opening Ceremony Take Place?
The opening ceremony for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar will take place at Al Bayt Stadium, located 40 km north of Doha, the country's capital. In fact, it is the stadium that is the furthest from central Doha of all other venues.
Al Bayt Stadium was designed and named after nomadic tents commonly used in the Gulf. The stadium has a retractable roof and a capacity of 60,000, making it the second-largest stadium to be used during the World Cup in Qatar, only behind Lusail Iconic Stadium, which will host the final match.
Who Will Perform at the 2022 World Cup Opening Ceremony?
At this time, FIFA did not yet announce who will perform at the 2022 WC opening ceremony, at least they did not yet disclose the full list of performers. That being said, we already know a few of the names that we'll see do their thing in Qatar.
One of the performers that we will certainly see take the stage during the opening ceremony is Jungkook, one of the seven members of South Korea's boy band BTS, which was also confirmed on the band's official Twitter account. Jungkook should perform a song called “Dreamers” during the ceremony.
— Copa Mundial FIFA 🏆 (@fifaworldcup_es) November 19, 2022
In addition to Jungkook, it seems that we will also see Lil Baby in Qatar. The America rapper twitted that we can expect him to perform at the opening ceremony, not hiding his excitement at the prospect of being in Qatar for the World Cup.
They Really Got The Boy Performing At The World Cup 🙏🏽
— Lil Baby (@lilbaby4PF) September 22, 2022
Lil Baby will likely perform the Budweiser anthem for World Cup 2022 called “The World Is Yours to Take”. After all, he is the artist that released the anthem in cooperation with Budweiser, so it makes sense to see him perform that song at the opening ceremony in Qatar, where he will likely take the center stage.
Meanwhile, even though it's not officially confirmed, we will most likely see Nora Fatehi take the stage as well during the opening ceremony. The Canadian actress will likely perform one of the official songs of the World Cup 2022, “Light the Sky”. While this song is one of a few from World Cup's official soundtrack, it seems most likely to be performed live at the opening ceremony.
Other than those names we mentioned, we don't know who else will perform. Of course, that doesn't mean that we don't hear rumours about potential performers at the 2022 WC opening ceremony.
One of the hose rumoured names is the famous American group Black Eyed Peas. Another name that's constantly being mentioned is the English singer Robbie Williams, who also performed in Russia in World Cup 2018.
In fact, Robbie Williams said that it would be “hypocritical” of him not to perform in Qatar after some performers said they will boycott the World Cup due to human right issues. Meanwhile, Williams feels that wouldn't be right since he already performed in other countries with similar issues before.
One of those performers who categorically said they will not perform in Qatar is English pop diva Dual Lipa. Some reports claimed that she will be there, but the singer denied those reports. It is also confirmed that Colombian star Shakira won't be pefrorming in Qatar, while rock legend Rod Stewart said that he “turned down a $1 million offer to perform there 15 months ago”.
So, we will just have to wait for FIFA's official announcement of full list of performers, which should arrive soon given that we are just one day away from the opening ceremony.
How to Watch the World Cup 2022 Opening Ceremony
As we already mentioned, the first game of the tournament is Qatar vs Ecuador and it's scheduled for Sunday, November 20th, at 4 pm GMT. The match will be covered by BBC One, but you can also watch the live stream on BBC iPlayer and the BBC iPlayer app.
The coverage of the opening game is officially starting at 3 pm GMT, but it's also expected that the coverage will begin shortly before, at 2 pm GMT, so it includes the start of the opening ceremony as well.