Michael Jackson had never hesitated to pull off a stunt that would shock the people. And that habit evolved over time, from music videos to live performances. In this article, we’ll look back to a handful of most Iconic live stage performances of MJ.
10. They Don’t Care About – Munich (1997)
As a part of the HIStory tour, Michael Jackson came to Munich in 1997. Dressed as an army General, he marched on the stage with his dance crew. As if he had taken over the territory and performed the ceremonial parade. The feeling of being present in that magical moment was inexplicably beautiful as some viewers expressed.
9. Dangerous – Munich (1999)
Michael’s 1999 Munich concert is incredible for many reasons. The song “Dangerous” was performed after a medley. That technique, those moves, and geese, the stage- that’s awesome. The choreography was exquisitely unique and fresh. No wonder Mr. Jackson was a perfectionist.
8. Jam – Bucharest (1992)
This performance is like Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’, but the intense dancing and the fireworks really add in my opinion. I think Jam’s performance is fitting it’s song, and I really like the energy he has in there. I also have mixed opinions on the changed middle section. I like what he did there, but the trumpet in the original was also brilliant. Overall for Jam, 10/10.
7. Beat It – Yokohama (1987)
The dance is loyal to the original music video, so the dance won’t give the performance any points. But, the cherry picker with the black trench coat and colorful lights at the ending section are what make this performance slightly better than the previous ones. I think his decision to do the Disco lights at the end section was missing at the Dangerous and HIStory Tour, and the Bad Tour did it perfectly. Also, he has a lot of energy in this performance.
6. Black or White – Superbowl XXVII Halftime Show (1993)
I really don’t know why this performance is better for me than the Beat It one, but it’s most certainly is. The smoke machines, the Indian walk, the backup dancer, something just seems better to me. Maybe it’s his insane energy in the following performance, since it was not performed as a part of a tour. This performance just seems powerful to me. I don’t even know why, but it is.
5. Man In The Mirror – Bucharest (1992)
The 1992 Dangerous tour of MJ in Bucharest, Romania is still vivid in the memories of many MJ fans. A stadium packed with the audience, watching such a grand music concert for the first time in their lives, such a beautiful moment. Michael performed his song “Man in The Mirror”, the whole stadium sang in the chorus. The gentle and calm MJ appeared hazy smoked stage as if it were a dream-come-true for many people.
4. Smooth Criminal – Munich (1997)
The HIStory World Tour of 1997 is famous for many reasons. As a part of that tour, Munich experienced the best ever performance of “Smooth Criminal”. He crushed it on the stage, with every bit of the choreography and music played perfectly. The perfectionist he was, reflects all around his works. Here the silhouette on the curtain with different sizes of shadow, you have to give MJ the credit for his keen eye to details. That whole performance was huge all together, but it particularly stood out.
3. Earth Song – Munich (1997)
Every tour was different and every performance HIStory tour of 1997 in Munich followed the same motto. There was MJ on the stage, his angelic voice asked “what about sunrise?”. The “Earth Song” performance of that night reclaimed his kingdom.
2. Billie Jean – Madison Square Garden (2001)
To celebrate MJ’s 30th anniversary, the Madison Square Garden was roaring; thousands of his fans including celebrities attended the show. The performance of Billie Jean rocked the stage and it went on to be Michael’s last epic performance. He never performed moonwalk again. His extremely flexible and rhythmic dance pattern created a storm which lasted till the show ended.
1. Thriller – London (2009)
All Thriller performances are a bunch of special effects. But in the preparation for This Is It, he outdid himself. The mini movie he did for Thriller is amazing, he obviously prepared another wolf mask for Thriller, and he added an instrumental section from Threatened to be at the end. The jacket is awesome since unlike the previous Thriller performances, it’s actually red this time, and has blood on the shoulders. Oh, I forgot something. Michael should’ve got out of a spider animatronic! Now tell me this man wasn’t a genius. He did actual flying ghouls to support the spooky feel this song has, and he did it well.