In a statement issued by the producers, it was announced that tonight's performances will go on as scheduled. "After much deliberation overnight and this morning and taking into consideration the views of Michael's legion of fans, we can think of no greater tribute to the memory of the man and his incredible music than for tonight's performances at the Lyric Theatre in the West End and Manchester Opera House go ahead as planned."
Executive Director Adrian Grant, a long-time associate of Jackson's and author of "Michael Jackson – the Visual Documentary," who conceived and created the show, said in a statement, "Words cannot express my deep sense of loss and sadness; I am shocked beyond belief that Michael has died. My full condolences go to to his family – his children, parents, brothers and sisters. The Jackson family have lost a son and a father, and the world has lost one of the greatest entertainers of all time, a true legend. Michael Jackson has been a massive influence in my life – inspiring me to get into the entertainment industry and to produce the best work that I can. I have supported Michael for the past 21 years through my magazines, books and now Thriller – Live, and I will continue to support and promote his legacy via this musical celebration. But my main focus right now is very much on Michael Jackson the person. He was warm, genuine, funny and smart, as well as the musical genius we all admired. Today I have lost a friend, and I will be there for his family, friends and fans. Rest in peace Michael, I love you."
The production is currently booking in the West End to Jan. 3, 2010. It has already set records as the highest-gorssing weekly show in the history of the Lyric Theatre. Described in press materials as "a spectacular, high-octane concert specially created to celebrate the career of the world's greatest entertainer and undisputed King of Pop, Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5," the cast now includes "X Factor" finalist Maria Lawson.
To book tickets for Thriller – Live, contact the box office at 0844 412 4661 or visit www.nimaxtheatres.com/thriller.