These are the last pictures of Michael Jackson on stage, taken just two days before he died.
The images of the singer hard at work rehearsing for upcoming tour This Is It give a glimpse of what was in store for fans at his planned gigs in London’s 02.
Jackson was due to begin the first of 50 dates at the arena on July 13, but died on Thursday after being rushed to hospital in Los Angeles.
Putting on a thriller: Michael Jackso strikes a familiar pose as he practises his routine in the Staples Centre, LA, for the This Is It comeback concerts
Eerie pictures show Michael Jackson rehearsing on stage for London comeback gigs just 48 hours before he died
In one of the newly-emerged images, taken on Tuesday at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles, the singer points towards the audience as backing dancers perform in front of a huge This Is It banner.
Despite looking frail, the star strikes a familiar pose and appears to be in full flow during the rehearsal.
In another photo, he smiles broadly, microphone in hand, dressed in a long shimmering mac over a top and trousers.
Man in the mac: Microphone in hand, the singer appears to be enjoying himself as he rehearses
More than 800,000 tickets costing up to £1,000 had been sold for the concerts at London’s O2 arena which were hailed as the most ‘expensive and technically advanced’ live shows ever.
The concerts, which were due to start in two weeks’ time, had been expected to be the highest grossing pop production of all time.
Hundreds of thousands of fans who bought tickets for the cancelled gigs have been told they will be entitled to a refund.
ON DVD, THE FINAL PERFORMANCE
Footage from Jackson’s final rehearsals is already being compiled for a DVD and album.
The star is believed to have been filmed running through his songs and dance routines the day before he died.
In the groove: Footage of star rehearsing could be released on DVD although it’s unclear who owns the rights
It is expected that when released this could become one of the star’s biggest selling works.
It is understood filming took place last Wednesday during Jackson’s rehearsals at the Los Angeles Staples Centre for the 50-date This Is It tour.
It remains unclear who has official ownership of the footage. A spokesman for concert promoter AEG
declined to comment. It is expected that the star’s estate will make more money in the next year from his music than he did in the last decade of his life.
The king of pop’s family will release a series of posthumous albums, starting this Christmas. It is understood Jackson wrote a number of songs for his three children, which were not to be released until after his death.
There are also songs left over from his last album, Invincible, released in 2001.
A tribute show is planned for September with , , and Barbra Streisand said to be in talks to appear.
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