EVENT: Thriller Live
Venue: York Grand Opera House
Dates: Until Saturday
Review BY: Julia Pattison
I last saw this show with my son Matthew back in April 2008, when Michael Jackson was very much alive, preparing for his own spectacular show.
Sadly, on 25 June 2009 he passed away, but he will go down in history as the undisputed King of Pop. Adrian Grant, co-producer, and original creator wants Thriller Live to be a celebration of Michael’s life.
From the show Matthew and I saw on Monday, 30 May, he should be proud that his show is an important part of the Michael Jackson legacy - concentrating on his creativity which spanned four decades of hit songs, albums, videos and concerts. From the belting beginning to the fabulous finale, this multimedia spectacular was a marvellous tribute celebrating his incredible career.
A simple, yet sensational set was used to the max as the story of the Jackson 5 and then Michael’s own amazing tale was told in music and dynamic dance, linked by short narratives. The lighting design was superb, complementing the action on stage. The live band directed by Ryan Alex Farmery were amazing; those guitar solos on stage will have inspired many a young aspiring player!
The hits kept on coming - ‘I’ll be There’ was a most moving, and powerful duet, with understudy Samantha Johnson showing that she was an accomplished singer and performer. Other favourites such as Man In The Mirror, Billie Jean, Dirty Diana and Thriller, to name just a few, were performed to perfection, with Smooth Criminal being a particularly slick and polished performance.
However, I can’t understand why some members of the audience (old enough to know better) would pay good money to see an amazing show, then proceed to text all the way through, as well as having loud conversations with their partner, totally oblivious to others. I was wishing they’d Beat It after the interval, but no such luck.
Rant over, this sensational show was truly amazing – like one big disco party where everyone’s invited...’I Want You Back’.