Fact Check: Ukraine President Zelenskyy Did NOT Sing Cover Of Lennon's 'Imagine' -- That's Alejandro Manzano

Fact Check

  • by: Sarah Thompson
Fact Check: Ukraine President Zelenskyy Did NOT Sing Cover Of Lennon's 'Imagine' -- That's Alejandro Manzano Boyce Avenue

Does a video show Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy playing piano and singing "Imagine," John Lennon's iconic song about world peace? No, that's not true: This video shows American singer Alejandro Manzano from the band Boyce Avenue. Manzano bears a striking resemblance to Zelenskyy but he was not doing an impersonation of the Ukrainian president when he covered Lennon's song. When the video was posted to the band's YouTube channel in 2017, there was no mention of Zelenskyy, who did not assume office until 2019.

The video was originally posted on the Boyce Avenue YouTube channel on July 9, 2017. An Italian radio station, Radio Salento, posted the video with Italian subtitles to their channel on March 19, 2022, under the title "ZELENSKY Volodymyr una cover di John Lennon - Imagine." The video's caption read:

Oggi sù radiosalento.net abbiamo promosso un brano Imagine - John Lennon cantata e suonata da ZELENSKY Vlodymyr

Translated to English with Google:

Today on radiosalento.net we have promoted a song Imagine - John Lennon sung and played by ZELENSKY Vlodymyr

This is how the post looked at the time of writing:

imagineyt.jpg

(Image source: YouTube screenshot taken on Mon Mar 28 15:00:54 2022 UTC)

The caption on the Boyce Avenue "Imagine" video posted on YouTube on July 9, 2017, contains links to the band's website, tour information, music sales and social media accounts. The portion of the captions specific to this music piece says:

Alejandro Manzano of Boyce Avenue performing 'Imagine' by John Lennon #Imagine #JohnLennon

The band is composed of three brothers Alejandro, Daniel and Fabian Manzano from Sarasota, Florida.

This is not the first time a video featuring Alejandro Manzano was misrepresented as Zelenskyy. Lead Stories wrote about another video featuring Manzano singing "Endless Love" as a duet with British singer Connie Talbot. It was misrepresented on social media as Zelenskyy and Olena Zelenska singing.

Other Lead Stories fact checks related to the 2022 Russia-Ukraine conflict can be found here.

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  Sarah Thompson

Sarah Thompson lives with her family and pets on a small farm in Indiana. She founded a Facebook page and a blog called “Exploiting the Niche” in 2017 to help others learn about manipulative tactics and avoid scams on social media. Since then she has collaborated with journalists in the USA, Canada and Australia and since December 2019 she works as a Social Media Authenticity Analyst at Lead Stories.


 

Read more about or contact Sarah Thompson

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