The public memorial service for Michael Jackson at Los Angeles' Staples Center on Tuesday will feature some of the late singer's closest collaborators, friends and fans paying tribute to the King of Pop. Among the stars expected to appear (and possibly perform) at the public event — which will take place after a private memorial earlier in the morning — are Jennifer Hudson, Mariah Carey, Stevie Wonder, Usher, John Mayer, Lionel Richie and Motown founder Berry Gordy, according to a statement from a spokesperson for the Jackson family.
The list does not specify which of the attendees will perform, but Carey is reportedly slated to reprise her famous cover of the Jackson song "I'll Be There" at the public ceremony and CNN has reported that Oscar-winning actress/singer Hudson will also sing at the event. Wonder was a contemporary of Jackson's on the Motown label in the late 1960s and early 1970s, Usher has often stated how influential Jackson was on his career, and Mayer performed the iconic guitar solo in "Beat It" on Fall Out Boy's 2008 cover of the song.
Among the other confirmed participants in the tribute to Jackson are Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant, "Britain's Got Talent" finalist Shaheen Jafargholi — who toured as a young MJ in the "Thriller Live" show and sang the Jackson 5 cover version of "Who's Loving You" on the "BGT" show to great acclaim — the Andrae Crouch Choir, Lakers icon Magic Johnson, Martin Luther King III, Motown legend Smokey Robinson, Jackson family friend the Reverend Al Sharpton and Jackson's longtime pal, Brooke Shields. The statement said the lineup was preliminary and subject to change, but noted that no further information will be released regarding the program before Tuesday's event.
Though she will not appear at the Los Angeles event, Madonna paid tribute to Jackson during one of her shows at the O2 Arena in London over the weekend — where Jackson was slated to kick off a 50-show run on July 13 — with one of her dancers interpreting some of the King of Pop's most famous dance moves to a medley of "Billie Jean" and "Wanna Be Startin' Something."
While those events are unfolding in Jackson's adopted home of Los Angeles, a memorial service in the singer's hometown of Gary, Indiana, is also taking shape. The Gary Post-Tribune reported that Mayor Rudy Clay has announced that another Gary-born singer, Deniece Williams, best known for her 1984 "Footloose" hit "Let's Hear It for the Boy," will be among the performers at a Friday memorial at the U.S. Steel Yard baseball stadium.
Other plans for the event include a performance from Indiana's first black Miss Indiana, Kellee Patterson, who kept in touch with Jackson after both left the city, and a 500-member choir singing "We Are the World."
MTV's live coverage of the Michael Jackson public memorial service at the Staples Center in Los Angeles will begin on Tuesday at 12 p.m. ET / 9 a.m. PT.
For complete coverage of the life, career and passing of the legendary entertainer, visit "Michael Jackson Remembered."
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