Authenticity Watch: East and West


“a cross between a North Korean mass rally and Cirque du Soleil” — Charles Krauthammer on the opening ceremonies at the Beijing Olympics. 

Meanwhile, back at the inauguration:

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Itzhak Perlman, pianist Gabriela Montero and clarinetist Anthony McGill made the decision a day before Tuesday’s inauguration to use a previously recorded audio tape for the broadcast of the ceremonies

Here’s my take, back in the summer:

Hard to believe it needs saying, but it is spectacularly hypocritical of Americans to be accusing another country of being mean by privileging beauty over talent — even as China’s manipulations are reported by news anchors who are themselves pumped so full of Botox they look lobotomized..

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Authenticity Watch: East and West

  1. “a cross between a North Korean mass rally and Cirque du Soleil” — Charles Krauthammer on the opening ceremonies at the Beijing Olympics.

    You really need to be writing for The New Yorker Or at least drawing their editorial cartoons.

  2. Do you not differentiate between an artist synching to a recording of his own work, freely admitting to what has been done, and a performer synching to another artist’s work, passing it off as his own, and working to prevent disclosure of that fact? What happened at the Chinese Olympics was scandal of sorts not because of the lip synching, but because one artist’s work was being passed off as another’s, with a government working to maintain the fallacy. A parallel would be Yo Yo Ma synching to another cellist’s work, with Obama conspiring to prevent the original cellist from speaking out. This is far from what happened in Washington. The article you link to gives a reasonable explanation for the pre-recording.

  3. I can see your point. Most famous actors and actresses in America are there primarily because of their looks.

    But I don’t think you are describing the same thing at all.

    Ma, Perlman, and the others pre-recorded their music, not because they were too ugly to appear on stage. We did not seeTom Cruise and Brad Pitt on stage pretending to play the violin.

    They did it because a live recording under such circumstances is extremely difficult.

  4. “It would have been a disaster if we had done it any other way,” Perlman told The New York Times, which first reported that the music was taped on its Web site Thursday. “This occasion’s got to be perfect. You can’t have any slip-ups.”

    If that’s the case, maybe they should have also used a recording of John Roberts administering the Oath of Office.