The 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing are ending Sunday with an elaborate closing ceremony including fireworks, musical performances and a cast of thousands.
Hundreds of dancers, acrobats and drummers helped kick off the final ceremony, directed by Oscar-nominated Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yimou.
Other highlights are to include a duet by tenor Placido Domingo and Chinese soprano Song Zuying, as well as a display by several hundred martial artists.
Although criticism of China's human rights was persistent on the sidelines, Beijing has been praised for its flawless handling of the logistics for the games. China also led the competition with total gold medals (51).
The United States won the most medals overall - 110, China came in second with 100, and Russia was third with 72 medals.
The next Olympic host - London - is expected to put on an eight minute show part way through the closing celebration.
During Britain's segment, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page and British singer Leona Lewis will perform.
Afterwards, British football (soccer) star David Beckham will kick a ball out into the crowd from the top of red double-decker bus.
At its climax, Beijing's mayor will hand an Olympic torch to his London counterpart - Boris Johnson. London is to host the 2012 Olympic Games.
Some information for this report was provided by AP.