“That’s why I write these kinds of songs; it gives some kind of awareness to people.” Michael, one of the world’s greatest music and dance artists of all time, has been captured as never before in documentary film recordings of his rehearsals and preparations for a gigantic spectacular of a London come-back performance. His aim, at this mega-event that never met history face to face, was to show “Talent like they’ve never seen before.”
Even the documentary footage shows talent like we’ve never seen before. The world can only imagine what magic would have come out of opening night and the scheduled repeat performances. As any performer or author knows, the rehearsals are only of taste of the grandeur that continues to unfold after a show or piece of authorship meets the light of day in it’s performance manifestation.
A few figures stand out for the general populace as immortal greats. Three of those are Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly and Mikhail Baryshnikov. Even people who weren’t fans of Michael Jackson, if they take a honest and unprejudicial look at his talents and the talent he motivated in others, is compelled in all honesty to say that Michael Jackson’s name is a legitimate fourth in the list of Astaire, Kelly and Baryshnikov.
A lyric from one of Michael Jackson’s songs featured in the rehearsal documentary says, “I like living this way…It’s human nature…Why, why…Tell ‘em that it’s human nature.” It is a sad truth that things in Michael Jackson’s life went against human nature—or rather carried human nature to a distorted extreme and led to his death, implicating another human in unintentional man slaughter. Sadly, the public can only hope that the distortion didn’t extend so far that this was part of what Michael Jackson meant by “I like living this way.”
One of Michael Jackson’s most famous songs (even non-fans have heard snatches of the lyrics) says, “I’m startin’ with the man in the mirror. Change.” Although he chose to apply this lyric quite literally, to his added pain and suffering, he has nailed the universal necessity on the head: A changed society, a changed world starts with the man or woman or child in the mirror. And what was the change that Michael Jackson cared so deeply about that he sang about it? “It’s all about love. Awareness, awakening and hope to people. It’s all for love.”
Lest that be rendered as pie-in-the-sky sentimentality let me hasten to say that Michael Jackson is right: It is love that will lead the privileged one’s of the big carbon footprint portion of the world to embrace change to help those whose lives are being encroached by drought and bloodshed. It is love that will lead families to pamper their children instead of neglect them (or even mistreat them). It is idealistic love that brings awareness, awakening and hope to people.
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