London Symphony to pretend to play for Olympics ceremony


Musicians with the London Symphony Orchestra are reportedly going to have to pull a Milli Vanilli when they appear at the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympic Games in London.

Reports from Britain state that the orchestra will mimic playing to prerecorded music due to concerns about the weather and the shape of the performing venue -- a large, oval-shaped arena whose scale would apparently make a live-music performance tricky.

The ceremony, which is set to take place at the new Olympic Stadium, is being overseen by Oscar-winner Danny Boyle, who serves as artistic director for the massive event.


The London Symphony has reportedly recorded the music that is scheduled to be played during the July 27 ceremony. The Daily Mail reports that Boyle wanted the orchestra to perform live, but that he was overruled by the organizing committee for the Games.

When viewers around the world tune in for the ceremony, they can expect to see the conductor and musicians from the renowned orchestra going through the motions while a soundtrack plays.

This wouldn’t be the first time that the mimicking of live music was used at an Olympics ceremony. In 2008, a mini-controversy developed during the Beijing Games when it was revealed that a 9-year-old singer lip-synced to the voice of another young girl whom officials had deemed less telegenic.

Similarly, at President Obama’s inauguration, the musical performance by cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Itzhak Perlman, pianist Gabriella Montero and clarinetist Anthony McGill played, unamplified, to a recording. The decision to use a recording was made over fears that the cold weather that day could damage the instruments.


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