The Estate of Michael Jackson, represented by Executors John Branca and John McLain, and Cirque du Soleil are teaming forces for the creation, development, production and promotion of Michael Jackson projects, featuring touring and permanent shows, based on the music and songs of Michael Jackson. Special lifestyle projects, including a nightclub to open with the Las Vegas production, will also be developed.
The first of these projects will be an arena-touring show in which fans will experience the excitement of a Michael Jackson concert, expected to debut in late Fall 2011. That arena show is anticipated to enjoy an extended run in Las Vegas in conjunction with longtime Cirque du Soleil partner MGM Mirage. The Las Vegas permanent show, also in partnership with MGM Mirage, is expected to open in late 2012. MGM Mirage will announce the location and plans for the permanent theatrical venue at a later date.
John Branca, Co-Executor for The Estate of Michael Jackson, commented, “This will not just be a tribute to Michael’s musical genius, but a live entertainment experience that uses the most advanced technology to push every creative boundary as Michael always did. Having attended Cirque du Soleil performances with Michael, I know he was a huge fan. We are excited to be partners with Cirque du Soleil to give Michael’s fans a truly unique way to hear, see and feel Michael’s music.”
Guy Laliberté, Founder of Cirque du Soleil, commented, “Michael Jackson is the King of Pop and an all-time phenomenal artist, both timeless and contemporary. As a creative challenge, this project is the ultimate. Through the use of cutting edge technology, we will produce a Cirque du Soleil experience not only worthy of Michael but unlike any other we have created before. We are also so pleased that our longtime partner MGM Mirage has once again joined us in presenting another unique creative experience in Las Vegas. “
John McClain, Co-Executor for The Estate of Michael Jackson, commented, “There will never be a multi-faceted entrepreneur, humanitarian and innovator like Michael and it is only befitting that this partnership be with Cirque du Soleil. No artist electrified the stage more than Michael did. We expect that his fans will come away from these Cirque du Soleil performances feeling the exhilaration of a Michael Jackson experience and with an even greater appreciation of his legacy.”
Daniel Lamarre, President and CEO of Cirque du Soleil added “We are honored and thrilled to be in partnership with the ultimate and most important record selling artist of all time. This association between two international entertainment brands promises to deliver to fans of both Michael and Cirque du Soleil unique artistic experiences”
Bill Hornbuckle, Chief Marketing Officer of MGM Mirage said “Las Vegas is known worldwide for its unparalleled entertainment offerings, many of which have been developed by the creative geniuses at Cirque du Soleil. We have been honored to call Cirque our partner for many years and are humbled now by the opportunity to work with them to create a show that will commemorate one of the most legendary forces in entertainment in our lifetime.”
Katherine Jackson, mother of Michael Jackson commented. “Our family is thrilled that Cirque du Soleil will pay tribute to my son in such an important way.”
The Estate of Michael Jackson and Cirque du Soleil will each own 50 percent of each Michael Jackson project, sharing equally in the cost of creating, developing, building and producing the projects and in the profits from each project. The Estate of Michael Jackson will also receive royalty payments on various aspects of its intellectual property used in the Michael Jackson projects.