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Rio Olympics 2016 closing ceremony: time, how to watch, live stream, and what to expect

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After two weeks of mesmerizing athletic performances, the 2016 Summer Olympics will wrap up with the closing ceremony at 7 pm Eastern Sunday, August 21, in Rio de Janeiro’s famous Maracanã Stadium.

But like the opening ceremony, if you’re hoping to watch it live on television, you’re out of luck — NBC isn’t airing it in real time. In the Eastern time zone, coverage starts at 8 pm. If you’re in the Central and Mountain time zones, tune in for the beginning of the ceremonies at 7 pm Central. In the Pacific time zone, watch at 8 pm.

The ceremony will also stream online (with the delay), although you’ll need a cable subscription to watch longer than 30 minutes.

How to watch:

On TV: The ceremony will air on NBC starting at 8 pm Eastern.

Streaming options: You can use the NBC Sports app on your phone or go to from a computer. After 30 minutes, both will require you to log in with a cable subscription.

What to expect:

The closing ceremony is expected to have a similarly modest feel as the opening ceremony, which reportedly only had one-tenth the budget of London’s 2012 opening ceremony.

Nevertheless, it will undoubtedly be a joyous celebration of a largely successful Olympic Games (the temporary discoloration of a diving pool aside).

The ceremony will be directed by the same creative team as the opening ceremony, including Brazilian director Fernando Meirelles and artist Rosa Magalhães, known for being one of Brazil’s best Carnival festival designers. The performance will reportedly highlight Brazilian music and culture. And with such a strong emphasis on environmental issues during the opening ceremony, the closing festivities will likely reprise similar messaging.

While details surrounding the closing event are mostly kept secret, Kygo, the Norwegian electronic musician, who grew up partly in Brazil, confirmed he will be participating in the festivities: "The opportunity to be a part of the closing ceremony of the Olympic Games in Rio is a huge milestone in my career and it will be the biggest performance of my life. I've been a sports fan forever," he said in a press release.

Pelé, the famous retired Brazilian soccer player, is also planning to make an appearance. Pelé was originally expected to light the Olympic flame during the opening ceremony but was unable to due to recent health issues. However, according to Twitter, he says he is "focused on joining" for the closing festivities.

Per tradition, the event will end with the passing of the Olympic flag to the host of the next Summer Games. The 2020 Olympics will be held in Tokyo, and so its governor, Yuriko Koike, will take the flag before the Olympic flame is extinguished.

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