By Dick Friedman
So now we find out the shame of the Forbidden City: that Lin Miaoke, the nine-year-old charmer who sang Ode to the Motherland at Friday's opening ceremony, really didn't sing at all. Lin lip-synced to vocals provided by seven-year-old Yang Peiyi, who is described in an AP story as having a "chubby face and crooked baby teeth."
In other words, one had the looks, the other the voice. It's a story as old as show biz, or at least movie soundtracks, as those of us of a certain age can attest by invoking My Fair Lady, in which Marni Nixon supplied the vocals for Audrey Hepburn. (I never quite figured out why they didn't just eliminate the middlewoman and give the role to Broadway original and Friedman fave Julie Andrews.)
How ode-ious is this latest scandal? To my mind it rates about an 8 on a 1-to-10 scale (10 being reprehensible), especially for a nation trying to put its best foot forward. Besides... with 1.3 billion people you tell me they couldn't find one kid with the looks and the voice? On the other hand... calling Simon Cowell! There's a HUGE opportunity here for a Chinese Idol show!
What do you think? Is this a big deal or much ado about nothing?