Michael Jackson had been planning to start a series of comeback concerts
in London and had been rehearsing in the Los Angeles area for the past
two months. Promoters of the shows said in March that he had passed a
lengthy physical examination.
Part Ⅳ Reading Comprehension (Reading in Depth)(25minutes)
Michael Jackson, the
sensationally gifted child star who rose to become the King of Pop and
the biggest celebrity in the world only to fall from his throne in a
freakish series of scandals, died Thursday. He was 50.
Jackson died at UCLA Medical
Center in Los Angeles. Ed Winter, the assistant chief coroner for Los
Angeles County, confirmed his office had been notified of the death and
would handle the investigation.
Direction: Inthis section, there is a short passage with 5 questions
or incomplete stamens.Read the passage carefully. Then answer the
questions or complete thestatements in the fewest possible words. Please
write your answer on AnswerSheet 2.
The circumstances of Jackson’s
death were not immediately clear. Jackson was not breathing when Los
Angeles Fire Department paramedics responded to a call at his Los
Angeles home about 12:30 p.m., Capt. Steve Ruda told the Los Angeles
Times. The paramedics performed CPR and took him to the hospital, Ruda
told the newspaper.
Question 47 to51 are based on the following passage
Jackson’s death brought a
tragic end to a long, bizarre, sometimes farcical decline from his peak
in the 1980s, when he was popular music’s premier all-around performer,
a uniter of black and white music who shattered the race barrier on MTV,
dominated the charts and dazzled even more on stage.
Highly proficient musicianship is hardwon. Although it’s often
assumed musical ability us inherited, there’s abundantevidence that this
isn’t the case. While it seems that at birth virtuallyeveryone has
perfect pitch, the reasons that one child is better than anotherare
motivation and practice。
His 1982 album “Thriller” —
which included the blockbuster hits “Beat It,” “Billie Jean” and
“Thriller” — is the best-selling album of all time, with an estimated 50
million copies sold worldwide.
Highlymusical children were sung to more as infants and more
encouraged to join insong games as kids than less musical ones, long
before any musical abilitycould have been evident. Studies of classical
musicians prove that the bestones practiced considerably more from
childhood onwards than ordinary orchestralplayers, and this is because
their parents were at them to put in the hoursfrom a very young age。
The public first knew him in
the late 1960s, when as a boy he was the precocious, spinning lead
singer of the Jackson 5, the music group he formed with his four older
brothers. Among their No. 1 hits were “I Want You Back,” “ABC” and “I’ll
Thesame was true of children selected for entry to specialist music
schools,compared with those who were rejected. The chosen children had
parents who hadvery actively supervised music lessons and daily practice
from young ages,giving up substantial periods of leisure time to take
the children to lessonsand concerts。
Ranked with Elvis,
He was perhaps the most exciting performer of his generation, known for
his feverish, crotch-grabbing dance moves and his high-pitched voice
punctuated with squeals and titters. His single sequined glove, tight
military-style jacket and aviator sunglasses were trademarks second only
to his ever-changing, surgically altered appearance.
Thesinger Michael Jackson’s story, although unusually brutal and
extreme, is illuminationwhen considering musical prodigy(天才). Accounts
suggest that he wassubjected to cruel beatings and emotional torture
,and that he was humiliated (羞辱) constantly byhis father, What sets
Jackson’s family apart is that his father used his reignof terror to
train his children as musicians and dancers。
“For Michael to be taken away
from us so suddenly at such a young age, I just don’t have the words,”
said Quincy Jones, who produced “Thriller.” “He was the consummate
entertainer and his contributions and legacy will be felt upon the world
forever. I’ve lost my little brother today, and part of my soul has gone
Ontop of his extra ability Michael also had more drive. This may
have been theresult of being the closest of his brothers and sisters to
his mother. “He seemeddifferent to me from the other children —
Jackson ranked alongside Elvis
Presley and the Beatles as the biggest pop sensations of all time. He
united two of music’s biggest names when he was briefly married to
Presley’s daughter, Lisa Marie, and Jackson’s death immediately evoked
that of Presley himself, who died at age 42 in 1977.
special,”Michael’s mother said of him. She may not have realized
that treatingher son as special may have been part of the reason be
became like that。
As years went by, Jackson
became an increasingly freakish figure — a middle-aged man-child weirdly
out of touch with grown-up life. His skin became lighter, his nose
narrower, and he spoke in a breathy, girlish voice. He surrounded
himself with children at his Neverland Ranch, often wore a germ mask
while traveling and kept a pet chimpanzee named Bubbles as one of his
Allin all, if you want to bring up a Mozart or Bach, the key factor
is how hardyou are prepared to crack the whip. Thankfully, most of us
will probably settlefor a bit of fun on the recorder and some
ill-executed pieces of music-on the pianofrom our children。
“It seemed to me that his
internal essence was at war with the norms of the world. It’s as if he
was trying to defy gravity,” said Michael Levine, a Hollywood publicist
who represented Jackson in the early 1990s. He called Jackson a
“disciple of P.T. Barnum” and said the star appeared fragile at the time
but was “much more cunning and shrewd about the industry than anyone
Jackson caused a furor in 2002
when he playfully dangled his infant son, Prince Michael II, over a
hotel balcony in Berlin while a throng of fans watched from below.
47.According to theauthor, a child’s musical ability has much to do
In 2005, he was cleared of charges he molested a 13-year-old cancer
survivor at Neverland in 2003. He had been accused of plying the boy
with alcohol and groping him, and of engaging in strange and
inappropriate behavior with other children.
48.In order to develop the musical ability of their children, many
parents willaccompany them during their practice sacrificing a lot of
The case followed years of
rumors about Jackson and young boys. In a TV documentary, he had
acknowledged sharing his bed with children, a practice he described as
sweet and not at all sexual.
49.Because of their father’s pressure and strict training, Michael
Jackson andsome of his brothers and sisters eventually became。
Despite the acquittal, the
lurid allegations that came out in court took a fearsome toll on his
career and image, and he fell into serious financial trouble.
50.Michael’s extra drive for music was partlydue to the fact that he
was by his mother。
Comeback had been
Jackson was preparing for what was to be his greatest comeback: He was
scheduled for an unprecedented 50 shows at a London arena, with the
first set for July 13. He was in rehearsals in Los Angeles for the
concert, an extravaganza that was to capture the classic Jackson magic:
showstopping dance moves, elaborate staging and throbbing dance beats.
51. To bring upa great musician like Mozart or Bach, willingness to
be strict with your childis
Singer Dionne Warwick said: “Michael was a friend and undoubtedly one of
the world’s greatest entertainers that I fortunately had the pleasure of
working with. … We have lost an icon in our industry.”
Hundreds of people gathered
outside the hospital as word of his death spread. The emergency entrance
at the UCLA Medical Center, which is near Jackson’s rented home, was
roped off with police tape.
“Ladies and gentlemen, Michael
Jackson has just died,” a woman boarding a Manhattan bus called out
shortly after the news was announced. Immediately many riders reached
for their cell phones.
So many people wanted to verify the early reports of Jackson’s death
that the computers running Google’s news section interpreted the
fusillade of “Michael Jackson” requests as an automated attack for about
half an hour Thursday evening.
In New York’s Times Square, a
low groan went up in the crowd when a screen flashed that Jackson had
died, and people began relaying the news to friends by cell phone.
“No joke. King of Pop is no
more. Wow,” Michael Harris, 36, of New York City, read from a text
message a friend sent to his telephone. “It’s like when Kennedy was
assassinated. I will always remember being in Times Square when Michael