Tag "MJVibe"

Kingvention 2017 Access All Areas!

Michael Jackson fans in London

So we did it again! The team sat down to have the discussion, does Kingvention make a comeback in 2017? We had a lot to consider and figure out, always aiming to be bigger and better with our events. More importantly, were we ready to throw another big soirée if so how would we go about executing it? Any event connected to Michael Jackson requires originality, attention to detail, finesse and that added touch of MJ magic. Careful planning is a must and it takes around a year to prepare for such an occasion. Kingvention is an event that has taken on a life of it’s own over the past few years and whilst we are thrilled with the success, each year becomes that bit more challenging to bring the vision to life…

Before we get into this year, let’s take a quick stroll down memory lane…

2015 Celebrating 20 years of HIStory

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Me sharing a funny moment with the late Eddie Wolfl, whom we dedicated this year’s event to
2016 Celebrating 25 years of Dangerous

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So after two amazing events how did we decide to come back and do it all again? After many drinks had been consumed in celebration of the 2016 event, a theme was in place. This time we decided to put the focus on Michael’s live performances and name this one ‘Access all areas’. The previous two events had highlighted key mile stones for two of Michael’s albums; the 20th anniversary of the HIStory album and my all time favourite album, Dangerous.

Michael Jackson Scream Album Launch LondonMichael Jackson Scream Album Launch London

This year Kingvention took place on what we dubbed MJ week. ‘Scream’ the Halloween themed hits album was released starting with a phenomenal launch party just a few days before Kingvention. The team were prepared for several long days and very few hours of sleep! After the arrival of our three special guests, we all sat down to dinner to get better acquainted. Each year we have a pre-event dinner as a welcome to London for our guests and to give them the chance to have a catch up and mingle a bit with some members of the team.

Friends At A London Restaurant

Photo Courtesy Of Steven Whitsitt

Following a fun evening of memories shared, good food and a few drinks with our guests. I got to assist Michael’s former photographer Steven Whitsitt as he captured Dorian Holley (former backing vocalist for Michael and This Is It vocal director) during an impromptu photoshoot in the middle of London Victoria. It was pretty fun to see how Steven works first hand. He had scouted out some interesting locations that very morning before we began work. His relaxed way of shooting and directing his artist or model explains how he has captured some really iconic frames over the years.

A photographer and his artist in LondonA Singer In LondonA Photographer In LondonA photographer and his artist in London

To say this day was a full one would be an understatement! It all started with the photoshoot followed by turning the Park Plaza Victoria in to a Michael Jackson haven!

Something that we all love is that each year we are always given the opportunity to learn and discover new things about Michael. Eddie Garcia is a man of many talents with the most energetic and fun personality! One of our VIP guests and a principal dancer on two of Michael’s world tours, ‘Bad’ and ‘Dangerous’ he was a huge hit with the fans. He shared with us some interesting anecdotes and techniques Michael liked to implement when putting together a live performance. It was extremely insightful to learn about how the routines were enhanced from what we see in the short films. Small nuances and tweaks in the choreography have brought new life to some of our beloved stage classics.

Eddie taught the original (Jackson/Peters) choreography to Thriller, the way Michael taught it to him as a new feature to this year’s event… ‘A Dance Masterclass’.

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I have to say that this year was our biggest event and in my opinion our best. The venue looked amazing when we had finished setting up. Every guest brought with them something totally different. The fans were hungry for nothing but a good time and the team were all in really high spirits. As always when you come to one of our events we like to kick things off with a bang and the Supafresh Dance crew definitely helped us get the party started!

Michael Jackson Dance CrewMichael Jackson Dance CrewMichael Jackson Dance Crew

What can you expect when you come to Kingvention? Well the key is in the name! It’s a convention all about the King Of Pop! MJ liked to always do things big and bold and as die-hard fans we always aim to throw an event that would be worthy of Michael’s attendance if he were still here with us today. Upon arrival huge banners and murals adorn the walls, professional live performances take place, exhibitors are set up, merchandise is everywhere and of course the main reason for our tiered tickets, our live interviews with our VIP guests…

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Live Interviews with Pez talking to Steven, Eddie & Dorian

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Dorian Performing his bluesy renditions of Billie Jean and The Way You Make Me Feel

Dorian Holley Singing Live In London At KingventionDorian Holley Singing Live In London At Kingvention

A number of fans told us that Kingvention is a major highlight in their calendar and that really means a lot, especially when you see a community that’s formed with Kingvention attendees. Some of our friends and delegates have even developed a social crew and branded themselves the K Squad. Putting an event like this together can be challenging and stressful for everyone involved at times. When you see the reaction of the guests, friendships forming, smiles all around and a group consisting of hundreds people of all ages and backgrounds partying the night away that’s what makes it all worth it.

Michael Jackson fans have always been loud and proud in our support of the King Of Pop. When it comes to music and entertainment MJ changed the game in more ways than one! He made us re-evaluate what constitutes as a great performer, writer and recording artist. His philanthropy, humanitarianism, personality and creativity have brought so many of us joy. Without Michael I wouldn’t have met some of the most important people in my life. Even eight years since his passing, I still meet new and inspiring people because of him. Being a member of the MJVibe, King Of Shop and Kingvention team is something I am extremely proud of. Knowing that 10 years ago we started something that has gone global and has brought so many people together whilst we honour Michael is what makes it all worth it.

We close out each event with an after party in an area of the venue – Club 30s in honour of the movie Moonwalker. Here are some highlights featuring me and the team…

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Will we be back to do it all again? We’re not sure… I guess all I can say is stay tuned!

The One And Only MJ

So I tend to speak mostly about fashion and beauty here on the blog and I felt I should really share some of the other sides of myself with you guys more often. It’s no secret that music is my first and biggest love and passion. Some of you may or may not know but I used to sing professionally and have been writing and recording music since I was a child. Every musician out there has that one artist or performing act that just tipped things over the edge for them. That one performer no one else could come close to or even equal in stature and, more often than not the musician in question is their biggest inspiration when it comes to the work they create themselves. For me that artist has always been and will always be the King Of Pop, Michael Jackson.

Those who know me personally will know that I am a super fan of Michael, one that the fan community would dub a die hard. I have been a fan of Michael’s music since infancy and my love of the man and artist has never died out. In fact my fanship has expanded and grown in more ways than I can explain in one post and for a number of reasons. If I showed you guys some pictures from my adventures with the fans during Michael’s trips here to London, events, parties, going to the theatre with the King Of Pop himself and trips around the world you would see a whole other side of me (I may well share some of those with you one of these days!). Having said all of that I am still going to include fashion in this post, how could I not lol? There isn’t a fan of any major artist or music genre out there who doesn’t want to own a cool hoodie, t-shirt, cap or jacket of their favourite star. For me doing this as an MJ fan has been a struggle for many years…

Myself Pez and Seb at the Bad25 Premiere 2012

Of course we always wear an MJ T-shirt when we can!

Being that I’m 28 years old I missed a lot of the glory days when it came to Michael. Bad, Dangerous and HIStory had all come and gone during the course of my childhood and of course Off The Wall and Thriller before I was even born! I was only able to enjoy the music and merchandise that was available back in the day and I unfortunately had to pick up a lot of my vinyls and things many years after these incredible albums were in the charts. By the time I was old enough to do the “fan” thing and travel around to try and meet Michael I was 18 years old and he hadn’t released an album for several years at the time. As you can imagine trying to buy an MJ T-shirt could not have been harder! At this time back in 2005 the online shopping bomb hadn’t quite taken off, eBay was pretty new and places to buy official collectors t-shirts were pretty slim. Of course bootleg options were around but even those were few and far between, usually one size only and not exactly female friendly lol. It’s no secret that I’m a larger woman and I have a pretty large bust. Because of this if I wore a tee with a photo or illustration of Michael his face would usually distort across my bust. Of course I proudly wore what I could get but I was never really able to have fun in an MJ T-shirt until 2009 when Michael sadly passed away. Previously fans had to pick up whatever second hand goods they could get at car boot sales, events and hand me downs from older friends.

In 2006 My best friends and I started an MJ fanclub and after some time were running websites, events and a magazine publication. We were given an amazing opportunity to handle some of Michael’s famous costumes working with Julien’s Auctions, at the Bush And Tompkins exhibition which was held at the Getty Images gallery. You can only imagine how incredible the experience was for us as fans and I definitely appreciate it as a fashion lover too! MJVibe and Iconic has since gone from strength to strength over the years. After a few years since launching our first website we were able to take things to another level with a fresh online presence and expansion. We were able to broker an incredible deal with Bravado, they were the official company who have been behind all of the amazing items that we have had since Michael’s passing. The official exhibition to commemorate Michael at The 02 had finished and they offered us the chance to buy all of the remaining merchandise and apparel that had initially been made for Michael’s ‘This Is It’ residency. The memorabilia was sold in the exhibition’s gift shop as the concert series was of course unable to take place. Of course we jumped at the chance to bring these products direct to the fans. This was major for us as we were able to bring official merchandise to the fans at a rate cheaper than nearly every online and in store retailer! I’m so thrilled about everything we have achieved over the years. King-Of-Shop is where it’s all happening and we have tons of t-shirts and collectables for fans all over to enjoy!

Handling the legendary Silver Suit, worn on Michael’s Bad World Tour with the 2 most iconic jackets from the Dangerous era at the Bush And Tompkins Exhibition 2012

2 of my best friends Pez and Seb went over to Las Vegas to see the Cirque Du Soleil production of MJ One last year. The show is going from strength to strength and has been a big hit with the fans. The sad thing about it though is that since it’s opening the availability of official merchandise both wholesale and retail has dwindled and the options to source new things is pretty slim. Fans are having to rely on stores who still have old stock and what some have been able to source from what’s left out there in various warehouses and record stores. Of course this has meant that there has been a slight rise in bootleg merchandise. The boys however were able to source some great new items direct from the gift shop at MJ One and we are one of the only European and worldwide outlets to have some of the official and new items out there. Unfortunately the only new and official merchandise on the market are the products sold in the gift shop and there is no official online store to buy any of the memorabilia. There are sadly fans all over the world who are unable to get to Las Vegas who have been left without an outlet to buy new and official merchandise for quite some time now. Lucky for me the guys found a t-shirt that is specifically cut for ladies and available in all sizes!

I absolutely love this t-shirt and it has become one of my favourite MJ tees. I have so many I’ve lost count so this is saying a lot! I love the scoop neckline and loose fit feel. The fabric is really light weight and super soft and I love that the image of Michael used is from one of my favourite short films, the ending scene of Black Or White where we see Michael tap dancing in the street and morphing into a panther! The illustration was done by artist Nate Georgio for the cover art of MJ One. There is one short angel sleeve and a twisted sleeveless effect on the other arm, a really fun and funky little detail. The production title for the show is in a shinny gold of course complete with Michael’s autograph.

Still image used to create the t-shirt illustration, from the incredible Panther Scene of Michael’s Black Or White
Courtesy of MJJ Productions

I decided that I would take on my own twist of a classic MJ look. In the short films to Bad, Speed Demon and Dirty Diana we see Michael adopt a tough biker look complete with skinny jeans, biker jacket and white tee! I thought my skinny ripped jeans from Evans would be a perfect fit and my old biker jacket from Simply Be. As MJ himself loved some sequins and a little sparkle so of course my glitter brogues were a must! Sometimes you just have to embrace your inner rock chic, in my case my inner MJ with a twist!

I’ve had a lot of fun over the years at MJ events, ALWAYS wearing an MJ T-shirt and I will continue to do so! I just hope that the options we get for apparel begin to improve soon because there isn’t a fan out there who is tired of wearing MJ, sticking their favourite hits on and dancing it up! As you guys know this isn’t the first time I’ve spoken about MJ on this blog but it is the first time I have shared this much of my history as a fan with you, I can assure you it won’t be the last lol!

Remember whatever you wear, feel fabulous in it and wear it with a smile!

I still have to get out to the states to see MJ One as the former MJ production by Cirque, Immortal was incredible! The good news though is that the boys and I will be throwing a huge bash on September 10th in London to celebrate an incredible album and era of music, Michael’s Dangerous! We will be having some incredible guests joining us including Grammy Award winning technical director and engineer Thom Russo, dancer and choreographer Yuko Sumida Jackson and Former SVP Marketing & Sales Manager at EPIC/SONY (Dangerous & HIStory) Era Dan Beck. We’d love to see you there! For ticket info, event schedule and more check out our website www.kingvention.com