Watch all the action from the Winter Youth Olympics opening ceremony

The Winter Youth Olympics has kicked off with an elaborate and spectacular opening ceremony in Lausanne, Switzerland.

The performance featured a 14-year-old Swiss figure skater, Gina Zehnder, lighting the Olympic flame. She is the youngest athlete in the host country's contingent.

Skater Gina Zehnder lights the Olympic flame (PA Images)

The International Olympic Committee's president Thomas Bach said in his opening speech: “Welcome home", noting that the IOC headquarters are in Lausanne.  “Here you are in the heart of the Olympic Movement.”

As well as welcoming all of the teams to the event, the ceremony included weird and wonderful performers.

There were a group of dancers dressed as Eskimos and a performing artist dressed as a bird with jet pack wings.

PA Images

All 79 nations competing at the Winter Youth Olympics were announced one-by-one as they were led out by their flag-bearers.

Team GB's was curling star Robyn Mitchell, 16, who prior to the ceremony, declared Scottish curling legend Eve Muirhead as her idol. 

Athletes from all the countries competing then danced and celebrated together in front of a packed audience.

PA Images

The tournament officially begins today, with NewsChain keeping you on top of all the action.

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