This was the 4000th celebratory gala charity performance of Thriller Live with all ticket sales being donated to The Princes Trust. Peter Andre, Russell Kane and Jon Culshaw joined Kieran Alleyne and the cast for a one night only extravaganza.
The legacy of the King of pop continues in Thriller Live which has already played in 33 different countries and now reaches this UK landmark performance at the Lyric Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue.
There is no dialogue to the production but a succinctly choreographed passage through the music that has become the soundtrack to all our lives. From the chirpy early Jackson 5 days the audience is taken on a journey, not always chronological, through some spectacular visuals and choreography that have come to define a musical legend.
Songs come thick and fast with the cast allowing their own personalities to shine through. This is not a Michael Jackson look-a-like convention but a celebration of the music that touched so many people. With only a hint of a timeline all the emphasis is placed on high octane dance moves.
Peter Andre's first stage entrance came with a heartfelt rendition of ‘She's Out Of My Life’. A self-confessed Jackson fan it was easy to see why he got the call. Introduced by Russell Kane, here to inject some humour into the proceedings, he did not disappoint. John Culshaw supplied a political angle with impressions to the lyrics of MJ with Trump paired with ‘Earth Song’ and Boris Johnson a well-worked ‘Billy Jean’.
Director and choreographer, Gary Lloyd, deserves praise for a cohesive fast-paced production. All the moves of the many videos are there with the trademark moonwalk ever delightful. My personal favourite ‘Smooth Criminal’ was sensational even managing to include the famous lean.
Peter Andre returned several times for the ballads most notably ‘Man In The Mirror’ which had the audience on their feet. With the howls of Thriller we knew the night was drawing to a close. But not before Kieran Alleyne, stunning as MJ, and a young Jackson performed a well worked routine to commence the final segment.
It's a big production, with a terrific live band, amazing dancers and the best pop music ever written. I look forward to the 8000th performance but will probably be back well before then. A must for any fan.
Tickets available here