The show is produced by Flying Music - the team behind pop-musical hits The Rat Pack and Dancing in the Streets - and Key Concerts, and features a cast of 30 singers, dancers and a gospel choir performing Jackson’s chart-toppers including “I Want You Back”, “Earth Song”, “Blame It on the Boogie” and, of course, the title song, “Thriller”. The tour coincides with the 25th anniversary of Jackson’s most famous album, Thriller, and is choreographed by LaVelle Smith Jnr, who worked on sister Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation tour in the 1990s.
Jackson's many accolades include seven UK Number One hits, the World Music Award's Best-Selling Pop Male Artist of the Millennium, and the American Music Award's Artist of the Century Award.
Thriller Live! comes in the wake of the announcement earlier this month that Never Forget, featuring the hits of the recently reformed Nineties boyband Take That, is to receive its world premiere this summer on a five-city tour ahead of a planned West End transfer (See News, 14 Mar 2007).
No cast has been announced for the new production. Following Reading (for one night only at each venue), Thriller Live! visits Birmingham, Basingstoke, Brighton, Croydon, Bournemouth, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Nottingham, Southend, Manchester, Gateshead, Liverpool, Glasgow, Leicester, Dartford, Cardiff, Blackpool, Sheffield, Bradford, Oxford, Bristol, London (Hammersmith Apollo), Grimsby, Brentwood and Cambridge, where it concludes on 3 June 2007.
- by Caroline Ansdell