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Composers in Theme Tune Contest

As Beijing counts down to the 2008 Games, world-class musicians are locked in a heated contest to compose the Olympic theme tune.

Giorgio Moroder
Famed Italian composer Giorgio Moroder, a multi-Grammy and multi-Oscar awards winner, is one of the numerous composers interested in writing the song.

The beginning of the song should include some Chinese string music and singing by a Chinese child, said Moroder on the sidelines of an Olympic music forum last Friday in Beijing.

"Children are our future, and many successful Olympic songs were performed by kids," said Moroder, who suggested that a national singing contest should be organized to select over 1,000 children aged between five and 10, the best of whom would perform at the opening ceremony.

"At the core part of the song, the thematic lyric 'One World One Dream' should be repeated by one Chinese singer and a foreign singer," Moroder said, adding that he would also find an appropriate Chinese word to end the song with, as he did for "Hand in Hand," the song he wrote for the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

"Hand in Hand" was regarded as the best ever Olympic theme song by former International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Juan Antonio Samaranch.

In fact, Moroder's connection with Beijing Olympics can be traced back to 1993 when he produced "Good Luck Beijing" for the city's bid for the 2000 Summer Olympics.

This time round the famed composer is working with renowned Chinese contemporary pianist Kong Xiangdong, who will help acquaint him with Chinese music.

The two previously worked together composing the "Garden of Harmony" for Shenyang China International Horticultural Exposition 2006.

Besides Moroder, Quincy Jones, the famed American musician, composer, conductor and producer, best known for his work on Michael Jackson's "Thriller," has also offered to write a theme tune for the 2008 Olympics.

Like Moroder, who plans to use Chinese instruments in his song, 73-year-old Jones said his work would contain many international elements but its core would be Chinese culture. He said he hopes it could teach the world much more about China.
Jiang Xiaoyu, executive vice-president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXIX Olympiad (BOCOG), extended his thanks to the foreign master composers for their enthusiasm. He said their examples may inspire more artists from around the world to offer songs for the Games.

Jiang said the public search for Olympic songs will continue and the final choice will be made in 2008.

BOCOG launched a five-year project to solicit tunes from amateur and professional composers in April 2003. So far the contest's three rounds have seen 23 songs chosen from thousands of entries.

The theme song will be selected from a short list in 2008.

The forth Olympic Songs Solicitation Campaign will start next year.

(China Daily July 21, 2006)

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