Remembering the King of Pop

music October 05, 2018 01:00

By Special to The Nation

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Bangkok’s 20th International Festival of Dance and Music pays tribute to Michael Jackson



Michael Jackson, the undisputed King of Pop, would have turned 60 this year and Thailand is joining the rest of the world in paying tribute to this great entertainer with a concert on Monday night at Thailand Cultural Centre as part of Bangkok’s 20th International Festival of Dance and Music. 

 

Jackson once said: “A star can never die. It just turns into a smile and melts back into the cosmic music, the dance of life” and this tribute concert by an all-star troupe of singers, musicians and dancers lives up to the statement promising smiles, cosmic music and a healthy dose of MJ moves. 

The show’s production values mimic those of an actual concert by the late singer and along with the brilliantly choreographed dances and phenomenal special effects are the perfect tribute to an iconic showman.

Produced by Sina Selensky, the sets, special effects, dance choreography and above all the singing recreate the magic. On the set list are all his greatest hits from solo albums like “Thriller”, “Billie Jean” and “Beat It” as well as his early chart-toppers with the Jackson 5. It was with “Billie Jean” that MJ taught the world to moonwalk.

 

Fronting the MJ experience is the multitalented Csaba Horvath, who channels Jackson with consummate ease and has spent the last eight years travelling around Europe and Asia personifying the King of Pop. 

An uncanny Michael Jackson impersonator, Csaba captures MJ’s soul, spirit, and talent perfectly. Csaba, accompanied by a troupe of young dancers, will replicate the energy and skill of MJ’s intricate dance routines.

Adding to the show are singers Jimi Carrow, Amani Robinson and Denis Obedekah. In Carrow’s rich and soulful voice viewers can hear echoes of R&B greats like Marvin Gaye, Sam Cook and Stevie Wonder. Robinson is an established singer who has sung soprano parts in numerous concerts and oratories, and is the winner of the Austria Barock Music Award. She has guested at Oper Kiel as Consuelo in Leonard Bernstein’s “West Side Story”. Her repertoire also includes Dorothy in “The Wizard of Oz”, Emeretta in “Hair”, Kiki in “Flashdance”, Sarah’s friend and member of the Harlem Ensemble in “Ragtime”, Deloris van Cartier in “Sister Act” and Vivian Moore and Cowgirl Jessie in “Footloose.” 

 

Obedekah has starred in the musical “Hair: at the Stadttheater Bremerhaven and in several productions at Piccadilly Theatre, Her Majesty’s Theatre London, the BBC, and on ITV in “An Audience With Kylie Minogue”. Her repertoire also includes Inez (“Hairspray”), Rizzo (“Grease”), and Joanne (“Rent”). She has also starred in “The Physician”, “Pope Joan” and “Treasure Island”.

The six-member band is led by Grammy nominee Tim Hahn, who is also the drummer and musical director. The winner of two Echo Klassik awards, Hahn has featured on several CDs and is the long standing drummer of Europe’s most famous Queen Tribute Band MerQury.

On bass is Oliver Klemp who has played and toured with artistes like Klaus Doldinger, Sharrie Williams, Gunther Fischer and James Morisson. Lead guitarist Florian Naegeli has played on several tours with the German singer Joey Heindle and has featured in musical productions like “Cats” and “La Cage Aux Folles”.  The percussionist Alfonso Garriso has played with the likes of Lionel Richie, James Brown, Joe Cocker, Tower of Power, Kylie Minoque, Anastacia, Jamie Cullum, Tom Jones, Ricky Martin and Michael Buble. 

 

Keyboardist Christopher Lubeck has been part of various projects like “Choreographers on the Move” by the Semper Opera Dresden and played solo piano for the CD “In the Curved Air” devoted to American singer-songwriter Chris Whitley, and the classic-jazz-crossover project In Flow, which he led as conductor. Guitarist Thomas Hubel meanwhile plays with several big bands and is resident artist at monthly jazz series “Jazz 55”. 

Stitching the various elements of the tribute concert together is choreographer Lorant Koncz whose credits include shows like “Who’s Bad”, “Dancing Highlights”, “Black or White” and “Footloose”. Currently he is also choreographing for “Tom Jones the Musical”.

Supporting the Festival are Crown Property Bureau, Bangkok Bank (PCL), Bangkok Dusit Medical Services (PCL), BMW Thailand, B.Grimm Group, Dusit Thani Bangkok, Indorama Ventures, Ministry of Culture, Nation Group, Major Cineplex, PTT (PCL), Singha Corporation, Thai Union Group, Thai Airways International, Tourism Authority of Thailand and True Corporation Public Company Limited 

Moonwalk madness

- Tickets are available at Thai Ticket Major counters, online at www.ThaiTicketMajor.com and by calling the hotline at (02) 262 3191.

- For more information, visit www.BangkokFestivals.com.