Michael Jackson won’t be there, but the magic of his musical spectacle will.
The music, the dancing and the sparkle that was Jackson’s career will fill the Cajundome when Cirque du Soleil’s “Michael Jackson The Immortal World Tour” stops in Lafayette for two shows on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Cirque du Soleil describes the show on its website, cirquedusoleil.com/michaeljackson, as “a riveting fusion of visuals, dance and music ... an electrifying production presented in a rock concert format that combines the excitement and innovation of Michael Jackson’s music and choreography with Cirque du Soleil’s unparalleled creativity.”
Cirque du Soleil’s shows many times take on a theme, then tell a story through each of its acts. This is where the Michael Jackson show is different.
“This show is a celebration of who Michael Jackson was as a performer,” says Laura Silverman, the production’s spokesperson. “You will see all of the iconic dance moves here.”
This will include choreography from “Bad” and “Thriller.” And no Michael Jackson show would be complete without the Moonwalk, which he introduced to the world in a live broadcast of the 25th anniversary of Motown Records from the Pasadena Civic Auditorium on March 25, 1983.
He sang “Billie Jean” during that broadcast, one of many Jackson hits included in Cirque du Soleil’s tribute.
“The only thing that will be missing is Michael Jackson,” Silverman says. “We’ll have a live band that will be playing with Michael Jackson’s tracks.”
The band will include some musicians who worked with Jackson, which Cirque du Soleil bills as “enhancing the authenticity of the show.”
Jackson was born Aug. 29, 1958, and began his singing career with his brothers as part of the Jackson 5. He later launched a solo career and was preparing to embark on his “This is It” world tour when he died on June 25, 2009.
Cirque du Soleil launched “Michael Jackson The Immortal World Tour” in October 2011. The show features 49 artists, which include 11 musicians, 20 dancers and 18 acrobats.
All will be wearing costumes designed by Zaldy Goco, who created the costumes for the “This is It” tour.
“All of the sparkle, all the excitement, everything that Michael Jackson was known for will be in this show,” Silverman says.
However, no Cirque du Soleil show would be complete without the company’s acrobatics and breathtaking feats performed in flawless precision. The show includes its own choreographed pieces, and audiences can expect to be wowed.
“It’s an exciting show,” Silverman says. “And it’s for all ages. We think this will be a fun night for everyone.”
Though “Michael Jackson The Immortal World Tour” is Cirque du Soleil’s first concert-style show, it’s not the company’s first production to pay tribute to a musical artist.
“We have a show called ‘The Beatles Love’ in Las Vegas,” Silverman says. “And we had a show called ‘Viva Elvis’ before that.”
Each of those productions explored the content of the artists’ songs through scenes filled with imaginary characters. The Michael Jackson show strictly is a revue of his career, beginning with the Jackson 5 and ending with his death. The action on stage celebrates the music.
“Aimed at lifelong fans as well as those experiencing Michael’s creative genius for the first time, the show captures the essence, soul and inspiration of the King of Pop, celebrating a legacy that continues to transcend generations,” Cirque du Soleil says.
But that description leaves out one word: magic.
And there will be plenty to go around when “Michael Jackson The Immortal World Tour” plays the Cajundome.