A 50-year flashback: King of Pop graces our shores

A 50-year flashback: King of Pop graces our shores
STAR ATTRACTION: Business came to a standstill as shop owners and shoppers ogled the superstar at Sim Lim Square.
PHOTO: The New Paper

The King of Pop Michael Jackson descended on our shores for the first time - on his birthday, Aug 29.

And like the US singing superstar's colourful life, his visit was not without its fair share of drama.

Scheduled to perform two concerts at the National Stadium on Aug 29 and Aug 30 as part of his Dangerous world tour, the second performance was pushed to Sept 1 after he suffered a severe migraine attack.

Jackson's no-show outraged audiences - some of whom paid the top-tier ticket price of $200 - as the announcement was only made more than an hour after he was scheduled to go on stage, with many clamouring for refunds.

At the same time, he was facing criminal investigations in the US involving child molestation allegations that claimed he acted inappropriately with a 13-year-old boy in Los Angeles.

Despite the controversy, both sell-out gigs attracted about 90,000 people.

Three years later, Jackson returned to Singapore for his HIStory concert on Oct 25 at the National Stadium again.

But this time, public response wasn't as enthusiastic and the venue was only three-quarters full, with about 30,000 fans.

The day before his performance, he made headlines for shopping at Sim Lim Square.

Stores on every level of the complex blasted his hits during his 95-minute spree. The final bill? Less than $2,000.

jeanm@sph.com.sg

 


This article was first published on August 9, 2015.
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