VIENNA (Reuters) - Vienna’s Schoenbrunn Palace is planned to provide the stage for a high-profile tribute to the “King of Pop,” Michael Jackson, at the end of September, organizers of the concert said on Tuesday.
Michael Jackson’s older brother Jermaine is inviting artists to perform in front of Schoenbrunn, once home of Austria-Hungary’s last Emperor Franz Josef, where the show’s producers expect an audience of at least 85,000.
Schoenbrunn is regularly used as a venue for the annual summer concert of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.
“The concept of The Tribute is that some of the world’s leading artists will perform Michael Jackson’s greatest hits live on stage in an imperial setting, befitting the King of Pop,” producers World Awards Media said on its website.
Jermaine Jackson announced in CNN’s Larry King talk show last week that the concert will take place in Vienna, not in London as has been expected. He will also present the show, provisionally scheduled to take place between September 22 and 27.
“I have invited many of the most acclaimed talents of our time,” Jermaine Jackson said on the website promoting the concert, “and many have already confirmed to perform in honor of my beloved brother.”
Jermaine Jackson added that he expected the tribute to be the first of an annual series of charity concerts that keep his brother’s “humanitarian legacy” alive.
“I want to make people aware of the humanitarian side of Michael,” Jermaine Jackson said.
“I want to show them how his true emphasis wasn’t music, or performing; it was improving the world. Understand this, and you begin to understand the essence of who my brother was.”
World Awards Media said that “a substantial portion of the proceeds” will be donated to three charities. Both the date and the artist line-up will be announced shortly, after finishing talks with the city of Vienna about the concert’s settings.
Tickets go on sale August 20.
Reporting by Boris Groendahl; Editing by Jon Boyle and Paul Casciato