Charlotte, Get a Life!

Fewer than three years ago, Sony Music supremo Paul Burger introduced a room full of journalists to his latest find, the child soprano Charlotte Church. Burger moved aside, and a tiny 12-year-old Welsh girl began to sing. Opera lovers in the audience winced—the sounds she made resembled those of an adult soprano voice but seemed strained, squeezed out of a body not yet ready for such demands. Nobody, however, doubted the marketability of the new product.

Since then, the child chanteuse has rocketed to international fame, singing for the Queen of England, the American President, even the Pope. Church's worldwide record...

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