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Michael Jackson to Live on and Tour via Telepresence?

July 13, 2009 | Howard Lichtman

Jackson to perform from beyond the grave

By BANG! Showbiz

Michael Jackson will perform from beyond the grave in London next month.

The late singer's This Is It show is being planned to take place at The O2 arena - where the Smooth Criminal singer had sold-out a 50-night residency - on August 29, the day of Michael's 51st birthday.

A life-like hologram of the King of Pop will be projected on stage and perform parts of his planned set to fans accompanied by the backing dancers he had been rehearsing with before his death last month.

It is also believed the pop star's children - Prince Michael, 12, Paris, 11 and seven-year-old Prince Michael II, also known as Blanket - will take to the stage for the grand finale with Michael's brothers and sisters, like they did at his Los Angeles memorial on Wednesday.

Britain's Got Talent singer Shaheen Jafarghol, who performed Who's Lovin' You? at the ceremony - has reportedly been approached about singing a Jackson 5 medley, taking on the vocals Michael performed as a youngster for the planned show.

AEG promoter Randy Philips, the man behind Michael's O2 residency, says it is important everyone gets to see what would have been an "amazing show".

Earlier this month, he said: "The world needs to see this production. It would have been - which is the tragedy here - one of the most amazing shows ever, so at some point we want the world to see that. The sooner the better."

Meanwhile, a popular Los Angeles tourist attraction will be renamed from Universal CityWalk to Universal Moonwalk on Thursday night.

From 7pm LA time, the entertainment centre will be transformed into a huge Michael Jackson tribute party, featuring outside screenings of movie The Wiz (which Michael starred in) and the music video for Thriller.

Madonna and the Gorillaz Perform at the Grammy Awards using the same telepresence tech that might be used for the Michael Jackson tribute concert. 

Howard S. Lichtman's Thoughts and Analysis

I have often said that Telepresence is all about content whether that content is a real-time business meeting between continents, an executive-level MBA program delivered from Washington DC to the Middle East, or a virtual Madonna and Virtual Gorillaz entertaining the audience for the Grammys.  Now it looks like telepresence might soon be giving world class artists the ability to preserve their best performances to live on with the ability to dazzle sold-out venues and leaving audiences asking "was it live or was it Memorex". 

Tips for Artists & Entertainers

1.  Start Now - Begin capturing your best performances now at the right aspect ratio, resolution, and camera angles that will translate into as realistic a performance (that people will pay good money to your children for) as possible when displayed on telepresence mediums like Digital Video Enterprises' Telepresence Stage or MUSION's eyeliner

2.  Shoot for a Variety of Venues - Create a catalog of content that will remain "evergreen" that can be incorporated into a variety of different venues from large coliseums to the Grammy's to intimate club locations where you might be playing to a couple of dozen fans.

2.  Test... Test... Test... Incorporate telepresence into your act now to begin getting comfortable with the technology, test special effects, props, digital graphical elements, and other aspects of the technology.

3.  Get Some Help - All Knowledge is Specialized - Consider consultants like the Human Productivity Lab that specialize in telepresence and understand the technology.

4.  Study Up - Here are some articles and videos that will show you the basics of what can and can't be done:

AV Concepts Brings Live 3-D Holographic Presenters from London to Orlando

Cisco Experimenting with an On-Stage Telepresence Experience

DVE Launches Portable Telepresence Stage


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