Saturday, July 29, 2006


Rice to Play Piano Piece at ASEAN Dinner
By KATHERINE SHRADER Associated Press Writer
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia —
Colin Powell danced to "YMCA," and Madeleine Albright did an Eva Peron impersonation. But Condoleezza Rice decided to play a classical piano piece.
The annual Association of Southeast Asian Nations dinner, which is closed to the news media, has traditionally given world figures a chance to show a more playful side.
But the current secretary of state said that given world events, a lighthearted skit wouldn't be appropriate.
Instead, Rice, an accomplished pianist who has performed with cellist Yo-Yo Ma, said she'll play a Brahms piece to fit her "serious mood" at the dinner Thursday.
In 2004, Powell performed a "YMCA" routine wearing a hard hat and a hammer tucked in his belt — after the garb of The Village People disco group that had the big hit in the '70s. Albright, dressed as Eva Peron, belted out a reworked version of "Don't Cry for Me, Argentina" in 1997, and the next year sang a duet called "East-West Story" with then-Russian Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov.
Last year, former Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick, attending for Rice, joined other U.S. officials in a rendition of "Oh My Darling, Clementine." They wore jeans and bandanas.
Rice said she had a couple of Brahms works to choose from. It will be "a reflective piece," she said. "It's a serious time."
July 27, 2006 - 7:10 p.m. EDTCopyright 2006, The Associated Press. The information contained in the AP Online news report may not be published, broadcast or redistributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press.

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