UEFA Champions League Final 2023 Kick-Off Show

Resourceful creative and production teams navigate strict stadium protocols to put on an electric opening show at Istanbul’s Atatürk Olympic Stadium.

Pre-match shows in football are a notoriously difficult nut to crack. With an extremely limited time slot, heavily restricted access to the pitch and an audience both in the stadium and watching the live broadcast that is focused firmly on the football, there’s no doubt that it is one of the more challenging gigs in the world of live events.

The UEFA Champions League Final 2023 Kick Off Show presented by Pepsi faced all these challenges, yet through close collaboration and negotiation with multiple stakeholders, a resourceful event team pulled out all the stops to ensure a spectacular production in fitting with its showpiece fixture. “This was a very special one for us,” said Flavia Muratori, Ceremonies Manager at UEFA, reminiscing about the ground-breaking show, which took place at Istanbul’s Atatürk Olympic Stadium.

For the first time ever, the show had three co-headliners in Nigerian artist Burna Boy, Brazilian superstar Anitta, and Swedish DJ Alesso. Black Skull Creative was brought in to produce an overarching creative concept, as well as content creation, show direction and choreography, while Balich Wonder Studio was engaged to produce the show. “The creative concept is usually provided by the main artist team, but the fact that we had three co-headliners meant that we could bring in Black Skull to come up with a concept that would work for all of the artists and the event as a whole,” Muratori commented.

Photos: Frédéric LEPLA