Oprah Winfrey taped the 23rd season premiere of her daytime talk show The Oprah Winfrey Show in Chicago, IL yesterday. For the momentous event, Oprah invited 150 US Olympic athletes who competed at the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, China to help kick off this new season of her show:
Thousands of spectators cheered Olympic medalists Michael Phelps, Dara Torres and Kobe Bryant on Wednesday as the city of Chicago got a high-profile boost to its bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympics. Oprah Winfrey was taping the season premiere for “The Oprah Winfrey Show” at a downtown park, and she invited 150 U.S. Olympic athletes to join her. The athletes were introduced under a shower of red, white and blue confetti. Winfrey intends the show to be both a welcome home for athletes who competed in Beijing and also a chance to showcase Chicago as the city bids for the 2016 Games, said Harpo Productions … The 23rd season premiere of Winfrey’s talk show will air Monday. Chicago is a finalist for the 2016 Games along with Tokyo; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Madrid, Spain. The International Olympic Committee will choose the 2016 host next year.
People.com has some scoop on what will transpire in next Monday’s season premiere ep:
Even face-to-face with Oprah Winfrey, Michael Phelps remains mum on the topic of his private life. But in terms of Olympic-sized revelations, Nastasia Liukin admits she gained inspiration from The Secret, while Kobe Bryant confessed to his surprise at finding he has so many fans in China … “It’s good to be back on American soil,” said Phelps, 23, grinning shyly and wearing only one of the eight gold medals he took home for swimming. Asking the most pressing question, “Are you single?,” Winfrey was told by Phelps, “I try to keep my private life private.” Bryant, joined by others on the winning men’s basketball team, said the players made a conscious effort to bring back gold and remedy what had become the sullied reputation of American players. “We made it a personal challenge. It was a priority” to take arrogance out of the game, he told Winfrey. In response to all the attention he received from adoring Chinese fans, Bryant, 30, admitted, “It caught me off guard” … Liukin, 18, cited the inspiration she received from The Secret, a self-help book popularized on Winfrey’s show. Recalling her pre-China prep, “I said, ‘I guess I should read it, Oprah read it,’ ” said the winning athlete. As for Torres – at 41, the winner of three silver medals in Beijing – the swimmer and mother of a 2-year-old said age shouldn’t limit one’s dreams. “All the mothers out there are my role models,” she said.
Oprah always does things in a big way, none of this surprises me at all. I do think it’s brilliant that she is using the fame of her show to help Chicago’s Olympic bid. I would love it if Chi-town won the the 2016 Olympics … if so, I’d make sure to attend some portion of the games, Chicago is so close to Detroit. I don’t make it a habit to watch The Oprah Winfrey Show (like my BFF Sarah does) but I’ll be watching this one. It looks too good to miss.