By LANDON JAMES
Just when you thought some artists never learned, Michael Jackson has agreed to appease his fans by playing to crowds one last time.
The King of Pop, now a remarkable 50 years old, will dawn the penny loafers and rhinestone-studded glove for one last tour beginning this summer.
Michael Jackson has agreed to play 50 shows at London’s premier O2 Arena in what Jackson has aptly titled the “This Is It” tour, according to Google News
Jackson originally announced in July, 2008, that he would be playing 10 concerts in the upcoming year; however, due to the remarkable demand by fans, Jackson agreed to 40 more shows and AEG Live added them to the docket.
Tickets officially went on sale at 7 a.m. Friday, March 13, and sold out within hours as hundreds of fans lined up outside the O2 arena waiting for their chance to be a part of history.
Out of 500,000 tickets, 336,000 sold out almost immediately in a special promotional presale before Friday. The remaining tickets sold out almost immediately.
The concerts, beginning July 8, will stretch into February 2010 and will be Jackson’s first concert performance since 2001, first world tour in over 12 years and first public performances since his child sex trials. The shows come only four years after Jackson was cleared of child abuse in the United States.
“These will be my final performances in London,” Jackson announced to the thousands of fans who gathered for a live press release in front of the O2 Arena. “I will be performing the songs my fans want to hear.”
Jackson is training an army of doubles to aid him in performing his more energetic and physically-demanding exercises, according to Bild.com
However, Jackson’s health has come up as a concern, and many are wondering if these last shows might push Jackson to the edge, or possibly even kill him.
Tim Leiweke, the CEO and President of AEG, has been trying to persuade Jackson to stage a comeback tour for two years. Leiweke also denied any claims that Jackson’s health is too poor for the performances and stated that Jackson had to take a physical for the concerts, according to Canada.com
Only time will tell the impact and music records these shows could break. With tickets ranging from 60 to 75 pounds to now well over 2,500 pounds, Jackson is expected to make millions of pounds through his comeback.
Until then, the world must wait until July 8 to see the King of Pop reclaim his throne on the global stage.