15:32 18 August 2012
George Michael came under fire after performing at the Olympics closing ceremony last Sunday.
George Michael was among those who were chosen to provide entertainment for the event. For the gig, he chose his 1990 hit Freedom and his new single White Light. The second song garnered some criticism, with some accusing Michael of using the closing ceremony to promote his new song.
The performance during the London 2012 closing ceremony is Michael’s first after recovering from a near-death bout with pneumonia, the same experience that kept Michael confined at a hospital in Vienna and also inspired his new song White Light.
Michael performed the singer in front of the 80,000 strong viewers at the Olympics closing ceremony arena, which also included Annie Lennox, Take That, The Who, and Spice Girls. All the other artists sang their best-known hits, except Michael, who chose to sing a new material.
Some of the viewers felt that his choice of song was inappropriate. Even Steve Anderson, a musical director who has handled the likes of Westlife and Kylie Minogue, also commented: “Not the time for new single promo.” Anderson also expressed his surprise that George Michael ‘was allowed to’ sing the new song.
Michael responded to his critics by tweeting to his fans: “I hope you are not bothered by the press reports of my scandalous ‘promotion’!!!”
He also added: “It was my once chance on TV to thank you all for your loyalty and prayers, and I took it.” He concluded with: “And I don’t regret it.”
White Light reached number two on Sunday and became the 22nd placer in iTunes’ countdown last Tuesday.
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