Friday, March 18, 2005

BBC2's Castrato Academy - "Child Abuse" says UNICEF


castrato academy 3
Extreme marketing to capture the 'yoof' demographic

The BBC is facing increased pressure from the child concern organisation, UNICEF to cancel the new series of its controversial arts show ‘Castrato Academy’.

The BBC claims that Castrato Academy is a serious attempt to repopulate the Opera Houses of Europe with these iconic and unique singers.

The Castrato is a male singer with an artificially created soprano or alto voice. This is the result of castration in boyhood.


The combination of the larynx of a youth and the chest and lungs of a man produces a powerful voice of great range and unique sound, or as pop music, Svengali Peter Waterman described it, “a sound that can make a grown man cum in his chinos.”


Castrati were especially popular in churches and opera houses in Europe during the 17th and 18th century. The past 50 years has seen a dramatic decline in the popularity of the Castrati resulting in their officially listing as an endangered species since 1991.


The worlds most celebrated castratos are Carlo Broschi Farinelli (1705-82) and Rick Astley (1963 – 1998).


astley
Astley: Never gonna give you up, buthappily gave them up.

The most disturbing aspect of Castrato Academy, according to UNICEF is the fact that parents happily hand their children over to the Academy often despite their child’s objection.

Castrato producer Helen Dakins defended the show this morning at a press conference held at the Royal Albert Hall, the setting for the shows finale in 10 weeks time,


“This is not just some tawdry game show,” Dakins told the amassed reporters, “this is about preserving an essential part of our world culture. If a few boys have to lose their knackers for it, that’s a really small price to pay.”


When asked how the parents could so readily hand their children over to the Academy, Datkins said, “Well, the fact is they know that their children will become famous and lead extraordinary lives. Plus, and this is always a major factor, the parents tend to make a ton of cash off them”.


A spokesperson for UNICEF described Castrato Academy as, “horrifically sick, debasing and morally vile.”


Ironically, the Head of Entertainment at BBC2, Mark Markinson, used exactly the same words when promoting the show at this morning’s press conference.

Markinson went on to add, “Not only do we get to see these boys learn to sing and perform to the best of their abilities, we also get to see them having their bollocks lobbed off. That’s true entertainment right there.”


castrato academy
BBC marketing focused on the 'no balls' gimmick

The BBC is currently pressing on with plans to air the first broadcast from the Castrato Academy as soon as April 2nd.

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