Birmingham in Britain is set to host the IBSA World Games for the first time ©IBSA

Tomorrow's International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) World Games Opening Ceremony is set to be one of the largest ever gatherings of elite blind and partially sighted musicians, dancers and athletes.

The event will see the Games officially get underway in Birmingham before finishing on August 27.

The Games are due to feature more than 1,150 athletes from 70 countries competing across ten sports largely held at the University of Birmingham.

Athletes are set to be crowned in archery, chess, cricket, football, goalball, judo, powerlifting, showdown, ten pin bowling, and tennis in last year's Commonwealth Games host city.

Goalball, judo, and men's football are all serving as qualification tournaments for the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

The Opening Ceremony is due to take place at Birmingham's Symphony Hall, starting at 6pm local time, and will see the world's only professional group of blind musicians - the Inner Vision Orchestra - perform.

They will be led by founder Baluji Shrivastav who performed at the London 2012 Paralympic Games Closing Ceremony alongside Coldplay's Chris Martin.

Birmingham's Symphony Hall is due to stage the IBSA World Games Opening Ceremony ©IBSA
Birmingham's Symphony Hall is due to stage the IBSA World Games Opening Ceremony ©IBSA

Performances from award-winning dance company Step Change Studios and DJ Pervez Hussain are then in store before Chair of British Blind Sport Sallie Barker declares the Games open.

"The Opening Ceremony has a significant role to play in not only setting an upbeat, energetic tone for the duration of the World Games, but to also underline the elite-level capabilities of blind and partially sighted people across society," Barker said.

"To have a gathering of some of the world’s most talented blind and partially sighted musicians, dancers, and sportspeople all under one roof in Birmingham is going to be such an honour. 

"It is these types of moments that can help to inspire the next generation of blind and partially sighted people to pursue their dreams and goals, and is a key legacy that we want the IBSA World Games to leave behind."

The 2023 IBSA World Games are the sixth edition, following the first in Madrid in 1998. 

Quebec then hosted in 2003 and quadrennial events following in São Paulo, Antalya, and Seoul before the 2019 was not held due to a suitable host not being found.