Former Jackson manager to co-produce tribute concert

Michael Jackson’s former manager is to co-produce the Vienna tribute concert to the "King of Pop" next month, organisers revealed today (Tuesday).

World Awards Media Gmbh said Ron Weisner, manager of the “Jackson Five” and Michael Jackson for eight years, had agreed to act as co-producer of the show set to take place in front of Vienna’s Schönbrunn Palace on 26 September.

Organising director Georg Kindel said: “Weisner will bring in all his experience in dealing with TV specials, but we are also hoping he can make use of his great connections to stars all over the world.”

Kindel added contracts with American production partners and light and sound experts will be signed in coming days, before organisers eventually announce a full line-up of acts performing in the mega-event.

A first batch of tickets for the show was sold at www.tribute2009.com last week, while the rest will go on sale at some stage in the near future. Organisers are currently trying to organise for two public viewing video screens to be set up in Vienna so thousands of fans who were unable to get tickets can watch the show – which will be broadcast live by several international stations – together.

Katherine Jackson, mother of deceased Michael and tribute concert initiator Jermaine, told organisers earlier this week she fully backed the concert.

“An event of such dimension keeps Michael’s vision alive and gives millions of fans the possibility to experience his music and celebrate the life of my son. I am convinced Michael would have loved it,” the 79-year-old mother of ten, who has been granted preliminary custody of Michael Jackson’s three children, said.

Stars like Madonna and U2 are rumoured to be set to perform at the event, but former “Jackson Five” member Jermaine Jackson is the only confirmed act to date.

Von Thomas Hochwarter

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