“Invincible” and Lehman Center Honor Michael Jackson

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In honor of the 10th year of the passing of Michael Jackson, I spoke with Darrin Ross, the creator/producer of “Invincible: A Glorious Tribute to Michael Jackson,” who is once again bringing his blockbuster extravaganza to Lehman Center for the Performing Arts, located at 250 Bedford Park Boulevard West in the Bronx, on Saturday, May 25 at 8:00 pm.

“I had done an Arts Presenter Showcase in 2009, where I met Eva Bornstein, the Executive Producer of Lehman Center for the Performing Arts. She eventually saw my Invincible showcase and followed up by booking the show on June 25, 2010. I am so grateful to Eva. She has been a major impact in the success of the production. She is a great presenter for others and in assuring the quality of my productions, “stated Ross. He continued, “...And now, in honor of the 10th year of Michael Jackson's passing, Ms. Bornstein has brought “Invincible” back to her newly renovated venue. I think it may still be under renovation but I understand thus far there is new carpeting, wider seats and an improved stage, etc. Just for the Lehman show, I am adding new dance numbers and songs, and of course there are always surprises. Oftentimes, audiences dress in Michael Jackson regalia and we really love that. Near the end of the show we invite the audience to get up and dance,” remarked Ross who won the Bessie Award, a 2001 New York Dance & Performance Award for his music composition and soundscape of the production Rome and Jewels.

Since “Invincible” is a children friendly show, Ms Bornstein is offering $10 tickets to children 12 and under for any seat in the house. There is also a pre-concert VIP reception planned for 6:30 pm where wine and hors d'oeuvres will be served to those who purchase VIP tickets. The VIP tickets guarantee the best seats in the house. Interested parties can ask about the VIP tickets when calling for tickets in general at the Lehman Center Box Office. For tickets call 718-960-8833 or online via www.LehmanCenter.org.

Also, Darrin is holding a meet-and-greet after the show and selling MJ merchandise of T-shirts, DVDs, CDs, etc. For an additional fee, a professional photographer will be present to take fan pictures with tribute artists Pete Carter and Jeffrey Perez and get signed autographs from them.

Pete Carter is a world renowned MJ Tribute artist and dancer who knew MJ personally and had a permanent tattoo made of a signature Michael signed on his back. Jeffrey Perez is one of the most authentic sounding MJ impersonators in the world. He both sounds like and dances like MJ. The show features singers and dancers and even talented Beatbox performer, Anoited S, who does the most incredible drum/keyboard and vocal sounds as well as a moving heartfelt tribute to MJ.

“Invincible: A Glorius Tribute to Michael Jackson” is the only tribute show endorsed by the Jackson family. Joe Jackson loved it and even Katherine Jackson saw the show and loved it. They thought the show was really amazing. There are other MJ tribute shows but nothing compares to “Invincible.” It is the only tribute show endorsed by the Jackson family.

Darrin became enamored with MJ in the late 70s after his mother took him to see the Victory Tour show. “I was blown away. As a preacher's kid, I listened to gospel/Christian contemporary but started listening to R&B, Motown 70s songs, Epic Records, Philly Soul, Gamble & Huff Productions like “Let Me Show You the Way to Go.” But when they released the Destiny album that was the turning point for me. And then came Triumph with “Can You Feel It?” and I was hooked, especially drawn to how professional MJ was and to his perfection. You know, Michael never released an album after Invincible but he was still working on things. He created hundreds of songs with maybe only 17 or 18 released but there are so many songs that were never released. We know Prince too had vaults and vaults of unreleased material,” said Darrin who is also involved with the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, where he is presently working on the ballet production “Lazarus.”

“I am doing their first 2-act ballet for 60 minutes about Mr Ailey's life. The Lazarus ballet will be at NJPAC for Mother's Day and at City Center and Lincoln Center in June. They are pairing it with another famous Ailey production “Revelation.” It is winning world-wide accolades. “Mr. Ailey” is a documentary film being done by Insignia Films also featuring the life of Alvin Ailey. Within the film we are shown making the production of Lazarus,” explained Ross who has also worked on productions like: Facing Mekka, Prince Scarecrow's Road to the Emerald City, King Michael, The Philadelphia Experiment, The Urban Funk Spectacular, The Pennsylvania Ballet, The Memphis Ballet, The Colorado Ballet, Love American Style, The Kennedy Center Honors and Maurice Hines “Hot Feet,” among others.

“In the next year or so, I am planning on creating another production I hope to bring to the forefront that will be even bigger than Invincible. But for now, I plan on bringing to the Bronx “Invincible: A Glorious Tribute to Michael Jackson”on Saturday, May 25th at 8:00 pm, to the Lehman Center Stage. If you love Michael Jackson come out and see the show, it's going to be spectacular and a thrilling night of music.”

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