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“It was a dream for a sports-lover like me,” Rogge said of the two weeks of competition.

Coe refused to anoint the games “the best ever,” in the phrase former IOC chief Juan Antonio Samaranch used to describe almost every games. But he declared himself “very, very pleased.”

He said the closing ceremony didn’t aim to be profound, not even the irreverent romp through British history offered by Danny Boyle’s $42 million spectacle on opening night.

The theme for the close, Coe said, could be summed up in three words. “Party. Party. Party.”

In a switch from opening night and what appeared to be a concession to its vocal critics, NBC decided to stream the ceremony live online, in addition to broadcasting it during prime time.

London organizers tried to keep the ceremony under wraps, but photographs opf their rehearsals, in an old car plant in east London, made the British papers almost daily.

The show will include performances of 30 British hit singles from the past five decades — whittled by Gavin from a list of 1,000 songs.

Gavin said Saturday the show would open with a tribute to the “cacophony” of London life, with a soundtrack ranging from late Edward Elgar, composer of the “Pomp and Circumstance” march, to The Kinks’ “Waterloo Sunset.” Frontman Ray Davies is expected to perform the 1960s song, a love letter to London.

While creators of the opening ceremony could rehearse for weeks inside the stadium, Gavin and his team had less than a day between the end of track and field competition and Sunday’s ceremony. Not a lot of time to practice a show with multiple sets, pyrotechnics and 3,500 volunteer performers.

Some athletes who skipped the opening ceremony in order to rest for upcoming competitions said they wouldn’t miss the closing extravaganza for the world.

“I am so excited,” said American teen sensation Missy Franklin, who took home five swimming medals, including four golds. “I think it is the perfect way to end the entire journey.”

Added Brenda Villa, a member of the gold-winning U.S. water polo team: “We just want to have fun and kind of put an end to this magical tournament.”