Mariah Carey rep accuses New Year’s Rockin’ Eve of sabotage after humiliating performance
TV producers refute the claim they 'set her up to fail'
Mariah Carey initially laughed off her disastrous performance on Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve in Times Square, writing “sh** happens” on Twitter, but now things are getting nasty.
A problem with her earpieces led Carey to murmur her way through a three-song medley with no vocals, growing increasingly desperate for words and dance moves to fill the silence, at one point telling the crowd: “I’m just trying to be a good sport.”
After video of the performance became a New Year’s Day viral hit, a representative for Carey told Billboard that “production set her up to fail”, with Dick Clark Productions firing back that the accusation that it “would ever intentionally compromise the success of any artist is defamatory, outrageous and frankly absurd”.
A source added to Billboard that Carey “had ample time to rehearse and chose not to”, instead bringing in a body double to do her sound check for her. Many onlookers felt the production mishap shows she intended to lip sync the performance (We Belong Together sees a vocal track come back in).
“We told them [the stage managers] that the in-ears were not working 10 minutes before the performance,” Carey’s manager, Stella Bulochnikov said in a statement. “They then changed the battery pack, and they were still not working on the frequency four minutes before the show. We let them know again, and they just kept counting her down and reassuring her that they will work as soon as they go live, which never happened – at which point she pulled them out but could not hear the music over the crowd.”
“After the show, I called [Dick Clark Productions’] Mark Shimmel and I said, ‘What the f--- happened?’ He said, ‘Let me call you back,’ then called me back and confirmed the in-ears were not working and asked if I would make a joint statement. I said, ‘No way.’ I asked him to cut the West Coast feed. He said he could not do that.
"I asked him why would they want to run a performance with mechanical glitches unless they just want eyeballs at any expense ... It’s not artist-friendly, especially when the artist cut her vacation short as a New Year’s Eve gift to them.”
In a statement of its own, Dick Clark Productions said: “As the premier producer of live television events for nearly 50 years, we pride ourselves on our reputation and long-standing relationships with artists. To suggest that dcp, as producer of music shows including the American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards, New Year’s Rockin’ Eve and Academy of Country Music Awards, would ever intentionally compromise the success of any artist is defamatory, outrageous and frankly absurd.
“In very rare instances there are of course technical errors that can occur with live television, however, an initial investigation has indicated that dcp had no involvement in the challenges associated with Ms Carey’s New Year’s Eve performance. We want to be clear that we have the utmost respect for Ms Carey as an artist and acknowledge her tremendous accomplishments in the industry.”
Citing several sources, Billboard reported that it understands the fault lies with Carey’s personal tech team rather than the show’s production team, and noted that cutting a West Coast broadcast would have been impossible unless a filler segment had been prepared.
Independent News Service