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Home / News Archive / News August 2021

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The Cast And Characters For 'MJ: The Michael Jackson Musical' Were Revealed This Morning. 10-08-'21

MJ MusicalWe now know who the main characters are in the story. They include Michael, his parents, the Jackson 5, and Motown founder Berry Gordy.

So far not included in the characters list are people like Diana Ross, or Bobby Taylor, who discovered the Jackson 5 with Gladys Knight and brought them to Gordy. They may very well not be in this story.

There are no marquee names on the cast list, but these people are no doubt incredibly talented. They include:

Myles Frost plays Michael. Quentin Earl Darrington as Joseph Jackson / Rob, Whitney Bashor as Rachel, Gabriel Ruiz as Alejandro, Antoine L. Smith as Berry Gordy / Nick, Joey Sorge as Dave, John Edwards as Jackie Jackson / Ensemble, Ayana George as Katherine Jackson, Apollo Levine as Quincy Jones / Tito Jackson, Tavon Olds-Sample as Michael, Lamont Walker II as Jermaine Jackson / Ensemble, Zelig Williams as Marlon Jackson / Ensemble, with Raymond Baynard, Kali May Grinder, Oyoyo Joi, Carina-Kay Louchiey, Renni Anthony Magee, Aaron James McKenzie, Aramie Payton, Kamille Upshaw, Ryan VanDenBoom, and Darius Wright rounding out the ensemble.

'MJ' starts previews December 6th and opens February 1st. Again, the people putting the show together are among the best on Broadway, including producer Lia Vollack and her husband, the great Tony winning set designer Derek McLane. Lynn Nottage wrote the book, Christopher Wheeldon is the director/choreographer.

Everyone involved is top notch. So if this show doesn't work, with all of Michael's hits and Jackson 5 singles, etc. it's time to go home!

Source: Roger Friedman; Fox News / Billie Jean


Walter YetnikoffWalter Yetnikoff, Colorful CBS Records Dies At 87. 10-08-'21

Walter Yetnikoff, a colorful record label executive who led CBS Records as president/CEO from 1975 to 1990 — when its roster was stacked with superstars like Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Barbra Streisand, Paul McCartney and the Rolling Stones — died Sunday night (August 8) at age 87.

Under Yetnikoff, McCartney collaborated with Stevie Wonder on the 1982 hit 'Ebony and Ivory', from Macca's 'Tug Of War' album, and with Michael Jackson on 'The Girl Is Mine' from 'Thriller'. McCartney and Jackson followed that up with another smash duet, 'Say Say Say'.

Yetnikoff gained notoriety for breaking down color barriers and forcing MTV to play Michael Jackson's 'Billie Jean', threatening to withhold all his other artists if the fledgling music network refused to comply. While at the helm of CBS, Michael Jackson – whom he had signed as a solo artist just three months after being named label head on the recommendation of his A&R staff (Yetnikoff wanted to pass) – sold over 40 million copies of 'Thriller', while Earth, Wind & Fire's 'I Am' and Springsteen's 'Born In The U.S.A'. each sold over 20 million, and Billy Joel's 'The Stranger' tallied 13 million.

At the 1984 Grammy Awards, Michael called Yetnikoff up to the podium, saying he was "the best record company president in the world." Streisand, too, scored her biggest-selling album under Yetnikoff's watch, with 1980s 'Guilty', a collaboration with the Bee Gees' Barry Gibb. Yetnikoff also helped launch the careers of new artists such as Cyndi Lauper (on CBS Portrait), 'Weird Al' Yankovic (on CBS' Scott Brothers Records) and Gloria Estefan.

Rest in peace Walter Yetnikoff! Thank you for all you have done!

A small family service is planned, to be followed by a more public memorial.

Source: Variety / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson In The Top 10 Best Cameo Characters In Fighting Games. 09-08-'21

Ready 2 Rumble Boxing: Round 2Gamers have voted to top 10 Cameo Characters in Fighting Games and Michael Jackson came at N#2 in the list!

The most famous pop singer of all time, Michael Jackson, received a cameo in the boxing game Ready 2 Rumble Boxing: Round 2 from 2000. Appearing alongside Shaquille O'Neal, the 'King of Pop' himself was motion captured and provided the voice for his character.

Michael Jackson is a playable character in Ready 2 Rumble Boxing: Round 2. Furthermore, he also appears in every single version of the game – including the Gameboy Color version with different costumes.

Here the full list of the top 10 Cameo Characters in Fighting Games:

10. Yoda in Soulcalibur 4
09. Link in Soulcalibur 2
08. Sonic in Super Smash Bros
07. Spartan-458 in Dead Or Alive 4
06. The Terminator in Mortal Kombat X
05. Rambo in Mortal Kombat X
04. Kratos in Mortal Kombat 2011
03. Box Art Mega Man in Street Fighter X Tekken
02. Michael Jackson in Ready 2 Rumble Boxing: Round 2
01. Rash, The Battletoad in Killer Instinct

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


Number Ones (Off The Wall) CD Album Cover'Number Ones' Has Not Been Off The British Chart For 6 Years. 06-08-'21

'King of Pop' greatest hits compilation for six years hasn't been off the UK best-selling album chart for six years!

'Number Ones' has just turned 6 on the Official UK Charts — the UK's best selling album chart!

Michael Jackson greatest hits compilation released by Sony Music on November 18th, 2003 also achieved Platinum status: the album was certified 9x Platinum (equivalent to 2 million copies sold).

Accompanied by the lead single 'One More Chance' and released in four cover versions — each reminiscent of a Michael Jackson phase (or release) — 'Off The Wall', 'Thriller', 'Bad' and 'Dangerous', 'Number Ones' has sold nearly 15 million copies. around the world (is the greatest-selling greatest-hits of the 'King of Pop's career).

Source: MJ Beats / Billie Jean


The Return Of The MJ Day! 05-08-'21

Don't miss the ultimate Halloween Party at one of London's most iconic venues, Madame Tussauds on Saturday 30th, October, as we celebrate the 30th anniversary of the annual Michael Jackson Day in aid of the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund UK.

This for sure will be the most thrilling night of the year as you get to mingle with Tussauds famous array of popular figures, from Beyoncé and Muhammad Ali to the 'King of Pop' himself!

Appearing live for the first time in the UK we bring you one of the world's greatest Michael Jackson tribute acts, Sergio Cortés! Also performing on stage are the sensational cast from the record-breaking show, 'Thriller Live'. and the incredible London Community Gospel Choir!

The show including an auction, will be hosted by Heart 90s radio presenter, Kevin Hughes.

End the evening on the dance floor as our DJ spins a mix of Michael's and Jackson 5 hits from 'I Want You Back' to 'Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough', 'Billie Jean', 'Bad' and many more!

Make it an extra fun evening and live it off the wall by donning a fancy dress costume, black tie or ball gown.

MJ Day 30 will be supporting the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund UK, a charity who have striving to change the way society treats its children and youth since 1995.

So shake off those cobwebs and get your ghoul on, it's time to party!

MJ Day 30Michael Jackson Halloween Party in aid of The Nelson Mandela Children's Fund UK Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Annual MJ Day.

Early Bird tickets now on sale.

General tickets will give you access to the World Stage from 7.45pm, where you can see our all-star show and live it off the wall until your carriages come calling at midnight. You'll also be able to take a selfie with many of Tussauds popular waxworks, and a few whom you may wish to avoid!

VIP tickets include access to the exclusive Marvel movie theatre from 6:45pm, where you can mix with the Avengers, enjoy a drinks reception and a delicious choice of food bowls, as well as the Spirit of London Ride – an exciting journey through the capital's history. You'll then be whisked into the movie theatre to experience the magic and thrills of Ghosts in its full cinematic glory, before joining the rest of the guests for the show at the World Stage.

Premium tickets can share the same VIP experience, but also an exclusive backstage meet and greet with Sergio Cortés, and seating at the World Stage for the show.

Early Bird tickets are discounted and on sale now until 29th August!

Source: Event Tribute.co / Billie Jean


'Burn This Disco Out', Michael Jackson Birth Day Celebration – Tickets On Sale Now! 05-08-'21

Burn This Disco OutEach year, Michael's birthday is marked with an official event in Las Vegas. Yet many fans are unable to make the journey over to Sin City to participate in the festivities.

So the Kingvention Team thought to celebrate Michael's birthday right here in London.

'Burn This Disco Out' is the ultimate Michael Jackson fan party and be playing non-stop MJ from the afternoon into the night!

The event will take place on Saturday 28th, August 2021, from 5pm to 11:30pm BST at the following venue:

Patch East
80 – 84 Leadenhall Street
London
EC3A 3DH
For more information about the event, the venue, the location and purchase your ticket, click here.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean


Behind the Velvet RopeMichael Was Supposed To Tour With His Brothers Said Tito. 04-08-'21

Tito Jackson is currently promoting his new album 'Under Your Spell' and has been doing multiple interviews.

Behind the Velvet Rope with David Yontef podcast, Tito said that Michael was planning to tour with his brothers after 'This Is It' in London.

"What happened was Michael was scheduled to do the O2 Arena over in the UK in London, And we were planning on adding on to his show at the end of that tour run and continuing from there. So that was the plans, but we never came to fruition and we all know why, So, you know, so we decided that we’re continuing to perform and do what we do. The world still loves the Jacksons. And Michael would want us to continue as well. So that's where we are with that."

Tito also spoke about his grief and pain regarding Michael's passing.

"It's harder," he said. "It's harder because mourning is something that's very much needed. And, and it's hard to get over, especially when it's a sibling or family member of mom, dad, uncle, or whatever. And the thing with the mourning for me, and I'm pretty sure it's the same for other family members, if we wasn't a family of fame and we wouldn't be reminded. I'm reminded constantly that my brother passed away. You know, you can be at the market or gas station or wherever, and people will come over to me and say, 'I'm sorry, you know, about your brother passing' or whatever. So, you can't forget it. Although you don't want to 'forget forget' it. But it's people bringing that sadness or that moment of time to you when you're not expecting it."

He finally said the Jacksons are planning to have Janet Jackson on tour with them but this have been talked about for years.

"That's been talked about for so many years [and] that's very possible, Hopefully, that can happen. You know, we can have the entire family on stage, you know, separately, at once, however, we plan to do it. But that would be a great package."

Source: Behind The Velvet Rope / Billie Jean


Luther JacksonMichael Jackson's Uncle, Luther, Dies At 85. 02-08-'21

Luther Jackson, Joseph Jackson's younger brother passed away of pneumonia on Sunday (August 1), in the Phoenix apartment he shared with wife, Angie Jackson.

"He had COVID and after they treated that, he had pneumonia real bad," Angie says.

Luther was a fine down home blues singer and guitarist who loved the blues.

His brother's kids would watch the Falcons play and Jackson ended up teaching two of them, Jermaine and Tito Jackson, to play guitar.

Rest In peace Luther Jackson and all our condolence to Angie Jackson and her family.

Source: Death Death / Billie Jean


BubblesBubbles And His Friends Showcase Their Artistic Paintings. 01-08-'21

Bubbles and his friends from the Center for Great Apes and Tennessee's Zoo Knoxville are once again showcasing their artistic abilities to paint great master pieces in Florida's Mezzanine Gallery at the Turchin Center.

The exhibition started on July 2nd and will end on February 2nd, 2022.

This exhibition features works created by chimpanzees at Zoo Knoxville, an AZA-accredited institution in Knoxville, Tennessee that works closely with the SSP. Their eight chimpanzees, who happily roam in a very large enclosure, are offered a painting enrichment as often as their committed caretakers can provide. Also included in this exhibition are works created by chimpanzees from The Center for Great Apes, a secluded sanctuary in Wauchula, Florida that rescues chimpanzees and orangutans from the entertainment industry. The CGA provides a positive, safe and stress-free environment for almost sixty (and growing) individuals.

The exhibition is called "98.6 – A Creative Commonality" as humans and chimpanzees share 98.6% of the same DNA!

Visitors will be able to see some of Bubbles' master-pieces.

Diane Beatty from Center for Great Apes said "Bubbles is our most prolific artist" with people buying the paintings on auction to raise funds to take care of the apes at the center.

It is located in the Turchin Center's east wing, and admission is free.

Exhibit hours are Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday from noon to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Center for Great Apes website
Zoo Knoxville link website

Source: 98.6 – A creative Commonality / Billie Jean


MJ OneMichael Jackson Birthday Bash Schedule In Las Vegas. 01-08-'21

As you know, the Estate is planning a Michael Jackson Birthday Bash in 'MJ ONE', Las Vegas on the week-end of 28-29 August. Part of the schedule has been reveiled:

The Estate of Michael Jackson and Cirque du Soleil are hosting a very special celebration commemorating the relaunch of 'Michael Jackson ONE' and Michael's birthday this year.

Gather together with all of the other Michael Jackson fans for a celebration in Las Vegas and plan to spend the weekend in Las Vegas to take part in all of the planned activities. Activities will start Saturday afternoon and include both new activities and old favorites:

– Dance contest judged by Jamie King and Rich & Tone Talauega
– Book signing by Michael Bush
– Meet & Greet reception with the Estate team and their invited guests and VIPs
– Cake to celebrate Michael’s birthday
– Step and repeat photo opportunity with artists
– Guests will have an opportunity to leave a birthday video message for Michael

Check back to see a full schedule of the events!

Make your hotel reservations using one of the special room rates being offered to fans:

Mandalay Bay: https://bit.ly/2U79wHw
Delano: https://bit.ly/35y9Sck
And to purchase tickets, visit Cirque du Soleil/MJONE: https://www.cirquedusoleil.com/michael-jackson-one

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean

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