The Swimmer costume was assembled from a pair of purchased lime green flippers and a purchased pink swimming cap. The complete costume included a wetsuit and swimming goggles, but these are not included in the Powerhouse acquisition. The costume featured in the Deep Sea Dreaming segment of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony and is one of eight identical costumes used int he segment.
The costume was designed by Dan Potra and it's manufacture coordinated by the Ceremonies Costume Workshop in Redfern, NSW.
The Deep Sea Dreaming segment presented a theatrical representation of Australia's affinity with the sea and it's rich and exotic creatures. Quoting from the Post-Games Report:
After the horses left the arena, the first narrative sequence, Deep Sea Dreaming, began. A small Hero Girl - Nikki Webster, a 13-year-old of astonishing talent and versatility - skipped into the arena in a pink sunsuit, carrying a beach towel. She applied sun cream to her nose, stretched, lay down and began to dream. Her dreams afforded the director of this segment, Meryl Tankard, the opportunity to transform the stadium into a deep, brilliant ocean - the kind of ocean that surrounds the island continent. To this end, 11 cables were used, strung 45 m above the arena across the 111 m space between the grandstands on either side.
As the Hero Girl soared high above the arena in a special lift harness, swimming and floating and somersaulting through the ocean, she was surrounded by exotic creatures of the deep. Giant translucent jellyfish drifted past her, through her dream, and then various coral cods, angel fish, sea-dragons, stingrays, sea cucumbers, anemones, banana eels, even a fearsome barracuda. Of the 800 people involved in this segment, 150 were schoolchildren taking the part of a giant school of fish. At one stage, as the Hero Girl drifted through the ocean, the face of Australia's famously vocal swimming coach, Laurie Lawrence, appeared on giant screens around the arena, urging kids to swim faster.
The Hero Girl could not swim faster. She was sucked slowly downwards among a swirling mass of fish. White ochre spirits entered the whirlpool and took charge of her, carrying her to a stage where a silhouetted figure was waiting. This was Djakapurra Munyarryun, the Songman and great tribal dancer, who would guide her during the rest of the program through an exploration of Australia's past. (Source: Post- Games Report, http://www.gamesinfo.com.au/postgames).