Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Olympic New Event? Lip-syncing

Close to one billion people watched the opening ceremonies to the 2008 Olympics, peaking with Chinese 9-year-old li'l darlin' Lin Miaoke singing the Chinese national anthem, "Ode to the Motherland."

Problem is, 7-year-old Yang Peiyi was the actual singer, but she was deemed unfit for the international camera with her chubby cheeks and (gasp!) uneven teeth.

"The reason for this is that we must put our country's interest first," Musical Director Chen Qigang said. "We had to make that choice. It was fair both for Lin Miaoke and Yang Peiyi. We combined the perfect voice and the perfect performance."
"The reason was for the national interest. The child on camera should be flawless in image, internal feelings, and expression," said Chen, a well-known composer.

"Lin Miaoke is excellent in those aspects. But in terms of voice, Yang Peiyi is perfect, each member of our team agreed," he said.

The final decision to stage the event with Lin lip-synching to another girl's voice was taken after a senior member of China's ruling Communist Party politburo attended a rehearsal. "He told us there was a problem that we needed to fix it, so we did."
Gotta love a totalitarian state.

The ceremony directed by China's Oscar-nominated filmmaker Zhang Yimou and featured more than 15,000 performers.

Luciano Pavarotti lip-synched and his backing orchestra mimed their performance at the opening ceremony of the 2006 Torino Winter Olympics, but he was using his own voice and, in fairness, was dying of cancer at the time.

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