Miley Cyrus: What a fake!


OK, I’m not the sharpest
pencil in the backpack, so maybe that’s why I don’t get what the fuss
is over this news of deception perpetrated by Miley Cyrus, the 15-year-old star of Disney Channel’s

Hannah Montana. I mean, I wanted to be outraged and self-righteous
when I heard and read the media buzz about another entitled child star
doing something unsavory. But after learning what the crime was, I couldn’t
even muster a disapproving frown or a finger-wagging!

If you haven’t heard by now,
Cyrus, while performing on stage as her alter ego Hannah Montana, was captured on video by a fan. The video shows Cyrus being whisked
offstage while a stand-in skips and dances and
prances around onstage to give Cyrus additional time to change from
the character into her real self. Of course, my first thought was,
“Hold up! Isn’t it illegal to videotape a concert? Arrest that fan!”
Anyway, Cyrus’ representatives quickly confirmed that yes, a “production element” is incorporated into the show to facilitate a quicker costume change. Here’s the
apparent offense:

OK, that was, what, seconds? A minute
at most? During the droning, repeated chorus portion of a song? Is that
so bad? Isn’t her entire rise to fame built on the double identity of
Hannah Montana versus Miley Cyrus, and switching around and trying not
to be caught as one or the other? I wonder if those who are outraged
get annoyed when they learn that magicians don’t really saw women in
half on stage.

Hannah Montana is a Disney
character. And I want to think that there aren’t too many folks over
the age of 12 who believe that the same person is under that Mickey
Mouse costume in Disneyland, Disney World, Paris Disney and Hong Kong
Disneyland all day, every day, in all four places. I know it’s not quite
the same thing, but I don’t know, maybe the irate fan(s) were just disappointed
that they saw how the "magic" is created. Maybe they’re just
sad, sort of like accidentally walking through the characters’ gate at Disneyland
and seeing Donald Duck with his head off, soaking his feet, while
smoking a cigarette. I understand being disappointed, because we all
want to live the fantasy. But since Hannah Montana is a fictional character,
does it matter that Hannah Montana was "played" by another
for a few minutes so that an actual person could get herself together
to perform? If Miley had a stand-in double for herself, then that would
be some interesting psychological grist to grind in discussion. Heh.

I know that people are attending
with the expectation of seeing both Miley and Hannah Montana, but … it’s
the same person. When one person performs two parts in a staged production,
the laws of physics guarantees that the person can’t be both people in
the same place at the same time. My math and science grades kept me
from attending Cal Tech, but I think I remember the equation like this:
two roles ≥ same place ÷ one person + same time = ain’t possible.
Could it all have been orchestrated differently? Probably. But
it just doesn’t seem that awful. They were obviously trying to make
the transition from one to the other quickly enough to get a "wow,
how’d they do that" from the audience.

This concert tour has made headlines
from the time it was announced. There were issues with ticket distribution, as well as problems with brokers
and individual scalpers buying up tickets and then selling them for
hundreds of dollars over face value. In some cities, seats
were up to a thousand dollars. As you can imagine, the majority
of Hannah Montana‘s most loyal fans are little kids, and the inflated prices exceeded what most parents could pay. Then just
a few weeks ago in a ticket giveaway promotion, it was discovered that
a woman wrote a letter on her 6-year-old daughter’s behalf, saying that
the girl’s father was killed in Iraq — and it was all in hopes of garnering sympathy
and some killer tickets! It was a lie. Now that is an example of an
egregious deception and setting a pretty awful example for kids. Not
theatrical sleight of hand that allows for a costume change.

Of course, I would be very
upset if I bought tickets to hear Barbra Streisand sing her greatest
hits, only to have her disappear off stage for a costume change while
Roseanne Barr finished up Don’t Rain on My Parade wearing a Streisand
wig and sequined gown. But is that what is taking place on stage
in Cyrus’ tour? I say no, not even close.

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