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Michael mania spawns live events

Stage tributes in the works for Jackson

Capitalizing on the Michael Jackson mania prompted by the singer’s death, plans are being made for several Jackson-related entertainment events.

Producers of “Thriller — Live,” the jukebox concert of the artist’s songs currently playing on the West End, announced that the show would launch a world tour later this month.

And celebrity website Showbiz411 reported that a Jackson memorial concert is being proposed for Aug. 29 at the O2 Arena in London, where Jackson was to begin his 50-date run next week.

Randy Phillips, president of AEG Live, which was promoting the O2 shows, told Sky News that “at some point the world needs to see this production, and I would imagine it could be done as a tribute with the family… and the stars that were influenced by (Jackson). We are discussing with the family so the sooner the better.”

“Thriller — Live” will kick off a 12-month global tour in Munich on July 21 before making stops in cities including Barcelona, Paris and Amsterdam.

Producers Paul Walden and Derek Nicol for Flying Music, in association with Adrian Grant for Key Concerts, also promise a U.S. touring incarnation some time in the next year.

Created by Grant, the plotless show includes songs from Jackson’s career both as a member of the Jackson 5 and as a solo artist. Show is currently skedded to play the West End’s Lyric Theater through Jan. 3.

A Broadway tuner adaptation of “Thriller,” based on the teen-wolf storyline of the song’s 1983 musicvideo, was in the works prior to Jackson’s death, although how Jackson’s demise will affect those plans remains unclear.

(Steve Chagollan contributed to this report.)

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