Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve is one of the biggest televised celebrations of the year, with Ryan Seacrest hosting the festivities on ABC. What’s more, the annual show always features a headline act, with Elton John, Destiny’s Child and U2 all gracing the stage in previous shows.
This year, Mariah Carey was the headline act for Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve and her show looked set to wow the crowd with a troupe of dancers and Mariah in a sparkling, nude dress. The singer’s three-song set featured Auld Lang Syne, Emotion and We Belong Together. Auld Lang Syne was performed without a hitch, but Mariah’s set soon took a turn for the worse as she allegedly couldn’t hear the backing track in her earpiece and refused to sing.
When you’re performing live on a programme which is broadcast to over one million people (as well as being immortalised on YouTube), the stakes are pretty high. However, Mariah’s reaction is being berated by fans and critics alike.
Find out what happened from Mariah’s point of view over on the next page. Any New Year’s Eve celebration should go off with a bang, and Mariah Carey’s certainly did. The songstress was the headline artist for Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, and her performance was explosive but for all the wrong reasons. Mariah reportedly spent three hours rehearsing for the show the night before, and re-rehearsed her set at 3pm on New Year’s Eve with “no sound issues”.
Carey’s representative Nicole Perna told Billboard that “she was not ‘winging’ this moment and took it very seriously,” and that it was “a shame that production set her up to fail”. Although the production team were alerted to Mariah’s technical issues, Perna said that “they told her it would be fine once she was on stage. However, that was not the case and they were again told that her ear piece was not working. Instead of endeavoring to fix the issue so that Mariah could perform, they went live.” Check out the performance for yourself below.
Perna added that “it is not uncommon for artists to sing to track during certain live performances” and said that “any allegations that she planned to lip sync are just adding insult to injury.” However, Maryland Sound International audio producer Robert Goldstein, who worked on the event, has claimed that it wasn’t a technical fault: “Every monitor and in-ear device worked perfectly. I can’t comment beyond that and don’t know what her nontechnical issue may have been.”
ABC have also come under fire with allegations that the technical malfunction was planned in a bid to boost ratings, a claim which has been strongly refuted. There are so many different versions of this story emerging from the woodwork it’s hard to know what to believe. Playing the blame game isn’t big or clever, guys.