For one lucky Thriller Live fan attending the show's fifth anniversary last night, it was a night she will never ever forget!
Six-year-old Channelle Koroglu from South Croydon, a Michael Jackson super fan, discovered she was the one millionth customer to see the show in the West End.
Chanelle was called on stage during the show to meet the cast, and was presented with a millionth customer golden ticket plaque, a copy of the stunning, sold-out limited edition, The Official Michael Jackson Opus, the entire back catalogue of Michael Jackson CDS, and a fantastic collection of Thriller Live merchandise.
Worth more than £450 and weighing in at a whopping 12kg, beautifully hand-bound in black leather, The Official Michael Jackson Opus is the only new publication approved and endorsed by the Estate of Michael Jackson and has more than 400 pages of never-before-seen photographs plus personal, heartfelt essays written exclusively by those who knew Michael Best.
The cast of the show perfoming last night, which marked the start of its fifth year at the Lyric Theatre, including American Idol finalist Trenyce Cobbins, Haydon Eshun, former lead singer of boyband Ultimate Kaos, and Eshan Gopal as the young Michael Jackson signed show posters to add to Channelle's boxed Michael Jackson Opus.
Chanelle, who attends Selsdon Primary School in South Croydon, was attending the show with her mother, Samantha for the very first time. Proudly sporting a sequinned MJ-style Fedora hat that she has owned for three years, she said: "This is a really great birthday present - I'm 7 next week. I loved all the show: well, all except for the scary zombies in Thriller!"
Thriller Live, a spectacular concert show that celebrates the music of the world's greatest entertainer and undisputed King of Pop, Michael and the Jackson 5, moonwalked into the West End in January 2009 after three acclaimed UK tours. It is currently booking at the Lyric Theatre to Sunday September 15, 2013. Several world tours have seen the show play to acclaim in 32 countries, including Germany, Italy, Poland, Denmark, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, France, Singapore, South Africa, China, Sweden, Finland and Norway. Just returned from a four- month run in Japan and opening in February for a five-month run in Brazil, Thriller - Live has now been seen by more than 2,500,000 people worldwide.
Unlike other West End productions, Thriller Live is not a rigid book musical with set songs, but is a constantly evolving music concert celebration. When Michael Jackson died, the Lyric Theatre became a focus for fans from all over the world, who created a massive shrine of flowers, candles, and tributes. More than 40 books of condolence were signed in the foyer then sent to the Jackson family. A year after his death, a permanent West End memorial to Michael was unveiled in the theatre foyer.
Thriller Live brings to life on stage the distinctive high-energy dancing and pulsating sound of many of pop's greatest hits, blending eye-popping video footage and effects together with dazzling choreography by the show's award-winning director Gary Lloyd. The show has regularly been updated with additional songs, new visuals and choreography.
To date, more than 30 young boys have so far sung the hits of the young MJ in the West End and around the world. The need to have six available at any one time has led the producers of Thriller - Live to launch an in-house training academy to train young boys. The MJ Academy opened its doors for the first time on Friday 9 November. Would-be MJs get classes in singing and dancing every Friday between 5pm and 8pm, with terms lasting three months.
Photo: Claire Bilyard