Skip to main content

Minneapolis man produces Closing Ceremony in Sochi

  • Author:
  • Updated:

A man who calls Minneapolis home got to check an item off his bucket list – producing the Closing Ceremony of the Olympics.

Since October, Michael Shann has been developing the production in Russia, first in Moscow and then in Sochi, according to the Star Tribune. He’s worked 12 to 16 hours per day putting the final touches on the show, which will be televised Sunday night.

“This is a bucket-list item for me. The Olympics are a life experience that I think everyone should get a chance to experience. It’s great to watch on television, but it’s really something I wish everyone had a chance to see live,” Shann told the Star Tribune.

Shann got his start as a stage manager for the Walt Disney Company, which led to a 20-year career as a producer, the Star Tribune reports. He produced events for Disneyland’s 35th anniversary, a Super Bowl and movie premieres, among other things.

A former colleague of Shann’s told him about a job with FiveCurrents, the company that’s contracted to create the Closing Ceremony. Shann and six of his former colleagues are working on the Sochi shows, according to the Star Tribune.

The Star Tribune reports while in Moscow, Shann oversaw construction bids for sets and scenery, budget work, recording music and completing models and designs. He told the Star Tribune the creative team had a lot of freedom.

“It was great fun to be around a planning table with French speakers, Italian speakers, German speakers and Russian speakers, all trying to speak English,” Shann told the Star Tribune.

The Closing Ceremony will focus on Russia’s culture, according to the Star Tribune.

The Star Tribune reports Shann attended one sporting event at the Olympics – a speedskating race.

Shann and his wife moved to Northeast Minneapolis two years ago to be closer to their family. After the Olympics he will return to Minnesota and continue working on corporate projects, according to the Star Tribune.

Next Up

Thomas Lane

Ex-cop Thomas Lane pleads guilty to manslaughter in George Floyd killing

The former Minneapolis police officer appeared in court on Wednesday morning.

14 W Main St, Anoka, MN 55303, United States - September 2021

2 dead after driver flees cop in Coon Rapids, crashes in Anoka

The double-fatal crash happened on Main Street near Ferry Street in Anoka.

Adam Hunter Pattishall.

Fleeing suspect charged in crash that left husband dead, wife critical

Daniel Joseph Fisher, 57, died from multiple blunt force injuries in a crash Sunday. His wife, Cathleen, is in critical condition as of Tuesday.

storm, severe weather

Threat of severe weather returns to Minnesota for 2 days

Isolated severe storms Wednesday, followed by scattered severe storms Thursday.


1 dead, 2 injured in crash at intersection in Ramsey

The crash happened at the intersection of Bunker Lake Blvd. and Sunfish Lake Blvd.

Tettegouche State Park bridge

Trails reopen as waters subside, but bridges damaged at Tettegouche State Park

Water levels on the river have dropped about six to eight feet since Friday.

Keith Harvell

Body pulled from Mississippi River ID'd as missing Elk River man

Keith Harvell had been missing since early last month.

900 W Broadway Ave, Minneapolis, Minnesota - July 2021

2 victims identified in double-fatal north Minneapolis shooting

A 21-year-old man and a 51-year-old man were identified as the people who died at the scene this past weekend.

Proctor football

Former Proctor HS football player pleads guilty to sexual assault of teammate

The case will also remain in juvenile court, with conditions.

Doug Wardlow

Doug Wardlow reneges on promise, will challenge GOP's AG candidate in primary

Wardlow's announcement sparked swift criticism from the MN GOP and the party-endorsed candidate, Jim Schultz.

Flickr - welcome to minnesota sign - Tony Webster

US News '150 Best Places to Live' features 1 from MN, 3 from WI

The latest US News list is for the most populous metro areas only, so no small towns.