Friday night was Cirque du Soleil's Michael Jackson's The Immortal Tour in Washington, D.C. at the Verizon Center. My understanding is that it is the largest touring show going on right now in the world.
This show has something for everyone. Whether you are a Michael Jackson fan, grew up with his music, love dancing, music videos, amazing choreography, or just an overall amazing entertaining experience... this show is for you.
I asked several audience members what their favorite part was of the show, but they just said they loved all of it. One lady told me she saw The Jackson Five in Baltimore when she was a teenager. She said she was in love with Michael Jackson. From the reaction of the crowd it seemed like a Michael Jackson love fest convention. Screams of "I Love You Michael" could be heard through out the crowd. People were wearing his iconic glitter glove, or his fedora or a t-shirt with his likeness. It was a weird emotional mix because of MJ's gorgeous music and talent, his complicated history and also because he passed. Nostalgia swept over me during the whole show.
For every hit MJ song, there was a dance routine. There are 23 dance sequences to about 25 Michael Jackson's hits. The show starts out chronologically going from MJ's time in Jackson Five up to his latest hits. The mood shifts from euphoria, anger to hope. The crowd particularly loved the dance sequence to "Smooth Criminal," "Thriller," "Beat It" and "Scream."
Especially gorgeous was the Swan sequence to the tune of "I Just Can't Stop Loving You." Appearing as a black and a white swan, two artists, Luba Kazantseva and Igor Zaripov, emerge from a lake to perform a graceful straps duo. An aerial ballet of strength and emotions executed following Michael's voice. Breathtaking. Splits in mid-air, holding each other by each other's feet... gravity defying.
The visuals are superb, especially the LED screens. There must be like 30 LED screens. From pyrotechnics, to fog, to the ever changing stage... just non-stop seamless action.
This show is superb as every other Cirque show I've ever seen. The musicians are amazing, however the music was a little ear-splitting. I especially liked the wicked guitarist Desiree Bassett, who has a cool black Mohawk hairstyle. She whammies the guitar almost as good as Eddie Van Halen did in MJ's "Beat It." She oozes sexy cool on stage. The singers remarkably sound like Michael Jackson. I could not tell where MJ began and the singers end. Props to the singers Fred White, Stevvi Alexander and Jory Steinberg.
Mansour Abdessadok is the main character through out the show who plays the mime. His body is like water as he undulates on stage. His muscle control is superior. The aerial strap artists, the contortionist Baaska Enkhbaatar, the dancers and the acrobats are breathtaking in their skills, talents and mastery of their body movements.
Also worth a mention is dancer Jean Sok who only has one leg. He dances on crutches and without. He received thunderous applause.
The show is not to be missed. The show is on July 14, Saturday and July 15, Sunday in DC.
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