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【原文标题】Sydney 2000: Let the mime games begin
Tony Jones │ August 24, 2008
托尼•琼斯 ｜ 2008年8月24日
The world was appalled by Beijing’s singing ring-in. But look back eight years, and you’ll find that Melbourne’s orchestra set the tone for Sydney’s triumphant opening ceremony.
SYDNEY has its Opera House - but has it got a real orchestra? Within days of NSW Premier Morris Iemma making unwise cracks about Melbourne being left off the World Monopoly board, The Sunday Age can reveal that the Sydney Symphony Orchestra mimed key parts of its performance at the opening of the Sydney Games in 2000.
And it gets better - it was, in fact, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra whose brilliant playing was heard by millions around the world at the Sydney Olympic opening ceremony. The MSO’s superior sounds (pre-recorded just for the ceremony) were played as the orchestra went through the motions - the showbiz short cut of using “backing tapes”, usually done to carry ageing or incompetent pre-formers. Remember Milli Vanilli? So, when everyone was tut-tutting about seven-year-old singer Yang Peiyi being replaced by the “prettier” Lin Miaoke for the Beijing Games opening two weeks ago, there must have been much squirming at the SSO’s Pitt Street headquarters. For eight years it has been one of the best-kept secret in Sin City.
When The Sunday Age contacted SSO conductor George “The Big G” Ellis last week, he was not overjoyed. “I am unable to comment because I have signed a confidentiality agreement,” Ellis said after an uncomfortable pause. It is believed that all the orchestra’s musicians also had to sign confidentiality agreement, but the miming was common knowledge among Melbourne musicians whose work had been recorded to help out their Sydney counterparts.
当周日版《时代报》上周采访悉尼交响乐团指挥、儿童音乐节目“The Big G”中的指挥大师乔治•艾利斯时，他不再是兴高采烈了。“我不能对此评论，因为我已经签署了保密协议，”在一个不自在的停顿后艾利斯说。据称整个乐团的成员都签署了保密协议，但是这场双簧对于墨尔本的音乐家来说是周所周知的事情，他们的录音被用来帮助与他们旗鼓相当的悉尼同僚。
SOCOG officials had ordered pre-recorded backing tapes for the entire ceremony to ensure nothing could go wrong on Sydney’s big night. This included Nikki Webster’s solo, Under Southern Skies and Human Nature and Julie Anthony singing the national anthem. “You simply can’t embarrass yourself on the world stage - you must do whatever you can to make it perfect,” the source said. Nikki Webster’s piece was recorded in July, almost three months before the ceremony. At the same time, south of the border, the MSO, conducted by Paul Grabowsky, was recording much of the program. This included one of the centerpieces of the night, the Tin Symphony, a seven-minute extravaganza described by the American television networks as a celebration of Australia’s larrikinism. The piece was inspired by windmills and water tanks and drew rapturous applause in the packed stadium.
悉尼奥组委的官员曾经指示对整个开幕式事先录好备份带，以确保在悉尼的盛大夜晚万无一失。这其中包括妮基•韦伯斯特的独唱“在南方星空下”，自然主义合唱团和朱莉•安东尼演唱的国歌。消息来源称“在世界舞台上你当然不能让自己难堪——你必须尽一切可能让它完美。”妮基•韦伯斯特的那首歌在7月份，几乎是开幕式前的三个月，就录好了。与此同时，在南部邻省由保罗•格拉博夫斯基指挥的墨尔本交响乐团录制了大部分的曲目。这包括当晚的主要曲目之一，一段7分钟的华丽表演the Tin Symphony，被美国电视描绘成是对澳大利亚后朋克文化的欢庆。那段乐章映衬着风车和水池在座无虚席的体育场引来了狂喜的喝彩。
It is not uncommon for major events to have their “live” music beefed up with backing tapes, according to music industry sources. SOCOG officials’ cautious “belt-and-braces” approach was vindicated when the prematch entertainment at the NRL 2002 grand final fell into a heap after a power failure forced rocker Billy Idol to abort his performance. But for one elite orchestra to mime another? That’s a different story.
One with added piquancy because the unashamedly Sydney-centric former prime minister Paul Keating (“If you’re not in Sydney, you’re camping out”) dreamed up the idea of trying to make the Sydney Symphony the nation’s flagship orchestra in 1995 - much to the chagrin of the MSO. Interstate rivalry boosted the fortunes of classical music. Jeff Kennett, then premier of Victoria, replied by substantially boosting funding for the MSO, and the race was on. For a while, the serious money backing Sydney led some to believe it would leave the MSO behind. But, by 2000, the SOCOG brains trust had its doubts.
Only last week, Premier Iemma boasted of Sydney’s inclusion on the new World Monopoly board. “Eat your heart out - Melbourne nowhere to be found. How pleasing it is that Sydney scored the red square right next to New York and London.” Now, it’s more like red faces than red squares.
Musicians from Sydney Symphony Orchestra raise their instruments after playing at the Sydney 2000 opening ceremony. But what the crowd didn’t realize was that the music they were hearing was a backing tape provided by Melbourne’s orchestra (below). Earlier this month, Beijing organizers had Lin Miaoke (insert above) mime to vocals recorded by Yang Peiyi, who was deemed to not be “flawless of image”.