Sonny G Debuts ‘American Music Icons’ Tribute

Sources: The Pueblo Chieftain – By Amy Matthew | Edited By – All Things Michael

Cab Calloway, Elvis Presley, Jackie Wilson, James Brown and Michael Jackson had more than music in common — and Sonny Gonzalez (known as Sonny G.) is ready to illustrate the foot-tapping connection. 

Gonzalez, a Pueblo native, will debut his production, “American Music Icons,” today at the Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center. The performance will start at 7:30 p.m. After learning some of Jackson’s dance moves for a show while he was in high school, Gonzalez continued expanding his impersonation over the last decade. During that time, he was building his acting career with a long list of parts in commercials and corporate training videos, on TV and in theater.

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Sonny G

As he studied Jackson, he learned through the King of Pop’s own interviews who influenced his dance style. The names that kept appearing wereCalloway, Presley, Wilson and Brown. Eventually, Gonzalez, 28, decided to move behind the camera and develop his own show tracing the timeline of all five performers.michael-jackson-thelavalizard

He went through hundreds of videos and listened to each man’s music to better understand the emotions of the songs, which he said find their way into their mannerisms and choreography. In the show, he lip-syncs to some of each singer’s biggest hits.

“Jackie and Elvis had similar movements,” Gonzalez said. “Between Jackie’s footwork and Elvis’ hips, you get James Brown. Cab Calloway was just way out there with his clothing and his movements.”

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Jackie Wilson

Sure enough, watch Calloway and you’ll see the origins of the moonwalk, a little Elvis hip shake and arm windmill, the frenetic, all-over-the-stage dancing of Brown. “Michael was all four of the other characters rolled up into one,” said Gonzalez. “When you see him at the end of the show, you’ll understand where he derived his hip movements and his beats.” Gonzalez’s Elvis moves even got him a job last year in an Starz/Encore movie channel promotion for Elvis month. He had to be approved by Elvis Presley Enterprises, which controls every facet of The King’s legacy.

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Cab Calloway

“They’ve invited me to Graceland for their big Elvis impersonation contest they do every year,” he said.

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Elvis

Developing his own show provided Gonzalez with an enormous lesson in music history. “I was surprised at the connections,” he said. “A lot of people don’t know who Jackie Wilson and Cab Calloway were, but if you watch the videos I watched, they’re still relevant today. The music, dance moves and energy — you see them in everyone from Justin Bieber to Usher to Lady Gaga.”

Though he’s lived in Denver for nearly a decade, Gonzalez said he wanted to premiere his show in his hometown.

“We’re all about the arts in Pueblo,” he said. “I want to let people know Pueblo’s a positive place and you can make it if you have a dream and the tenacity to get it done.”

The performance will be filmed by Pueblo company Luminous Media Arts. Tickets for “American Music Icons” are $20. They are available at the arts center box office.

The evening will include a Halloween dance party and a costume contest with cash prizes.

IF YOU GO:

WHO: Sonny G.

WHAT: ‘American Music Icons’

WHEN: 7:30 p.m. today

WHERE: Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center, 210 N. Santa Fe Ave.

TICKETS: $20 at arts center box office

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Reserve And Cinrg Present: The Kiss 957 BOOBASH

Sources: Connecticut Reserve | All Things Michael

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Join us for a sinister evening for Connecticut Biggest Halloween Event The Kiss 957 BOO BASH, taking place right in Central Connecticut at the Reserve in Meriden.

Get ready for some spooktacular entertainment, as well as an eerie environment as we turn Connecticut’s finest Reserve into a ghostly haunted scene!!

Joby Rogers will be bringing the Ultimate Michael Jackson Xperience to Reserve alongside United Rhythms Dance Studio as they preform THRILLER to get the night started!

Multiple performances to follow throughout the evening all leading to Moodswing’s Very Own DJ DSTAR!

Supporting music by Connecticut’s own, Dj Leon Corzo aswell as NYC’s Dj Levek..

Three levels of mystery patiently await you so please dress in your most extravagant costumes for great prizes and drink specials!!

You Don’t want to miss out on this incredible night!!!

Get tickets here

Flash Back To The ’80s Costume Bash (Charity Event)

Sources: Framingham Patch – By Susan Petroni  | Edited By – All Things Michael

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Tease your hair big, toss on those acid-washed jeans, stirup pants and neon top and headband and rock out to Madonna, Michael Jackson and Prince at an awesome 80’s costume party this Friday night. And, at the same time you will be helping to raise money for three local food pantries.

Sponsored by TD Bank, the Totally 80’s Costume Bash is the United Way of Tri-County’s “Totally Rad” fundraising event where they aim to raise funds for their three food pantries in Framingham, Marlborough and Greater Clinton.

The event is Friday, October 24 at the Verve in Natick from 8 p.m. to midnight.

Advance tickets are $40 each or two for $75; tickets at the door the night of the event will be $50.

Passed hors d’oeurves, food stations, and a cash bar will also be available.

In addition there will be chances to win prizes for those who participate in one of the many contests including – best Moon Walk, gnarliest Air Guitar Player, or Totally Awesome Costume of the evening.

Funds raised at the event will help eliminate hunger in our local neighborhoods. As the numbers of unemployed and under-employed continue to seek assistance, the United Way of Tri-County needs your help now more than ever. Serving 34 cities and towns in MetroWest, Norfolk and Worcester Counties the three food pantries combined currently serve thousands of individuals each month.

The United Way of Tri-County, headquartered in Framingham, partners with many food distributors to provide healthy and nutritious groceries and meals to the growing number of individuals and families in need.

Through its affiliation with the Greater Boston Food Bank, the United Way can utilize their food dollars to the maximum. For every $1 spent, the United Way can purchase $4 worth of food. And in 2013 the United Way of Tri-County was recognized as a leader in addressing food insecurity and honored as the GBFB’s Annual Community Partner of the Year. Yet staff will tell you that individuals are still not getting their nutritional needs met. People are still hungry so there is more work to be done. Join us for a party with a purpose.

“We want the Totally 80’s Costume Bash to feel like it did in the 80’s, with big hair, big shoulder pads and big results for the food pantries”, said Paul Mina, President and CPO of the United Way of Tri-County. “This is a chance to be silly and have fun for a great cause. We’re asking the community to dig into their closets and pull out those stir-up pants and acid washed jeans and join us for an evening with a purpose.”

Tickets for the event can be purchased online at http://www.uwotc.org/totally80s or by calling the United Way of Tri-County office at 508.872.3291.

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Free Thriller Flash Mob Workshop |Pink and Blue Bash For Cancer Awareness

Sources: New Hampshire – By Katie McQuaid | All Things Michael

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I can’t be the only one who tries to dance like Michael Jackson, or at least one of his back-up zombies, every time “Thriller” comes on at a party. Or at the gym. Or in the frozen food aisle at the grocery store.

With Halloween approaching, one Manchester dance studio is looking to give wannabes like me some real Michael Jackson dance skills by offering a free “Thriller” Flash Mob Workshopthis Wednesday. Instructors at the Royal Palace Dance Studio will teach the iconic “Thriller” choreography from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at their 373 South Willow St. school.

Of course, once you know the dance, you are going to want show off your new skills in public. That’s why you need a ticket to the first ever Pink and Blue Bash to benefit the Friends of Norris Cotton Cancer Center this Friday.

The evening will include 80s music, lots of dancing to “Thriller” and other hits of the decade, and silent auctions. Prizes will be awarded to individuals with the best pink costume, the best blue costume and the best 1980s-themed costume.

With pink as the symbolic color of breast cancer awareness, and blue the color people wear for prostate cancer support, this Halloween party aims to raise awareness and encourage screenings for both.

“When my dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer, he realized that there are so many pink ribbons for breast cancer and no blue ribbons for prostate cancer. My goal is to get the blue ribbons out there to bring awareness to the fact that screenings for men are as important as mammograms for women,” says Crissy Kantor, founder of Chill Spa, which is hosting the event at the Executive Court.

Tickets for the bash cost $35 per person and can be purchased at Chill, or on the web at tinyurl.com/pinkbluebash.

 

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Odyssey Dance Theatre Presents “Thriller”

Sources: City Weekly | All Things Michael

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Now in its 18th season, Odyssey Dance Theatre’s Halloween production—inspired by Michael Jackson’s classic 1983 short film/music video—has become a scarily attractive tradition for Utah audiences. Once again, ODT has two separate casts touring the region for the entire month of October, taking the company’s widely popular formula of pop familiarity, broad comedy and contemporary jazz/ballet movement all the way to Idaho. The thrill of Thriller for eager audiences is the company’s blend of contemporary culture with dance and a macabre sense of humor. Fan favorites include Curse of the Mummy (think mummy hip-hop artists) and Dem Bones (which features black-lit tap-dancing skeletons). Then there is always the Romeo & Juliet-inspired Frankenstein & Frankenstein, in which the big creature loves his bride to the point of smothering her. And don’t forget the infamous and Irish-enraging River of Blood Dance, a gory massacre in which a sniper picks off the performers one by one. (Jacob Stringer) Odyssey Dance Theatre: Thriller@ Kingsbury Hall, 1395 Presidents Circle, University of Utah, 801-581-7100, Oct. 10-Nov. 1, 7:30 p.m., 2 p.m. Saturday matinee, $25-$45. OdysseyDance.com, KingTix.com

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Annual Thriller In The Pit Dance Party To Be Held Friday For Eve Carson Scholarship

Sources: The Herald Sun | Edited By – All Things Michael

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Chapel Hill – A dance party will be held at the Pit at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Friday in honor of The Eve Carson Scholarship.

The Eve Carson Scholarship board, along with UNC Dance Team and other UNC-Chapel Hill dance groups, will teach and dance to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” according to a news release.
Students, campus organizations and university leaders will dance to “Thriller” and other big dance hits. The UNC Dance Team will teach a step-by-step tutorial before the performance. All attendees are invited to dance and are encouraged to arrive early.

This event aims to promote awareness of the scholarship, to encourage the motto of “students celebrating students” and of living out the Carolina Way.

The Eve Carson Scholarship is open to all juniors, and the application is due on Oct. 10.

The scholarship was established in 2008 to commemorate and celebrate the life of the former student body president who was slain that same year.

Eve Carson Student Body President UNC-Chapel Hill Trustee
She had envisioned a junior-year merit-based scholarship and included it in her platform for student body president in 2007.

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Time: 11:45am at Chapel Hill

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New 1980s Themed Pizza Restaurant Features Life-Sized Michael Jackson Replica And Other Cool Stuff

Sources: Coloradoan | Edited By – All Things Michael

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From behind bright pink Ray Bans, Alex Morgan gets nostalgic about his new Fort Collins pizza place and decade-themed museum.

“Ohh,” he draws, “the eighties are the best.”

Morgan is a week away from opening Totally 80’s Pizza, a project he’s been working on for the last decade, by collecting a restaurant’s worth of 1980s-themed paraphernalia.

Bon Jovi's "You Give Love a Bad Name" plays next to "The Goonies" movie poster at Totally 80's Pizza

Bon Jovi’s “You Give Love a Bad Name” plays next to “The Goonies” movie poster at Totally 80’s Pizza

Formerly Amici Pizzeria, which closed in August as the owners moved back to Italy, the walls at 1717 S. College Ave. are now covered in pink and teal accents. Display cases hold Jem, Barbie and Pee-Wee dolls, My Little Pony, Care Bears and signed photographs like the one of Paula Abdul dancing with a cartoon cat in “Opposites Attract.”

“Everyone will notice something different,” Morgan says of the diverse collection that also includes empty pop cans and niche cereal boxes.

His most prized artifact? The original hand-written lyrics of A-ha’s one hit, “Take on me” (1985).

His most expensive piece? A handmade and life-sized Michael Jackson replica, complete with facial scruff, that Morgan commissioned.

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Morgan, who is in his late 30s, lived with his wife in Hawaii before moving their young family to Northern Colorado. The couple also own Daddy O’s Barbershop in Loveland.

Morgan says the 1980s were a special time in history.

“To me, it’s kind of the last of the innocent times,” he said. “It was the decade of fun … and nothing goes better with fun than pizza.”

Once open, he sees Totally 80’s as a date spot and a place to take the family.

The restaurant will have a fast-casual atmosphere, with customers ordering personal, medium or large pies at the counter, from ’80s accessorized employees.

All of the restaurant’s booths are surrounded by I Spy-worthy memorabilia, wall-mounted TVs will play period music videos, and three arcade games will provide distraction by the entrance.

Owner Alex Morgan, left, with Alf, a DeLorean and the Fort Collins Ghostbusters van at Totally 80's Pizza

Owner Alex Morgan, left, with Alf, a DeLorean and the Fort Collins Ghostbusters van at Totally 80’s Pizza

“There are plenty of places to eat in Fort Collins, and plenty of places to eat pizza,” Morgan said. “We want to create an experience.”

Totally 80’s Pizza

What: 1980s-themed pizza place with an all-you-can-eat salad bar and local beer on tap.

Where: 1717 S. College Ave., Fort Collins CO

When: Opening Oct. 1

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NME Photography Exhibit At Royal Hall Features Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse And More

Sources: NME |Edited By – All Things Michael

The ‘Behind NME Lines’ exhibition will run from September 23 to October 23

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London’s Royal Albert Hall is to host an exhibition celebrating NME’s music photography.

Opening on September 23, the ‘Behind NME Lines’ exhibition is a retrospective of iconic covers from our 62-year history, featuring some of the industry’s most renowned photographers including Dean Chalkley and Kevin Cummins, and profiling an array of music icons from Michael Jackson, The Beatles, Sex Pistols, The Who, Public Enemy and Amy Winehouse. The exhibition will run until October 23.

The exhibition can be viewed when attending performances at the venue or on the following free open days:?

Saturday September 27, 10am–4pm?
Saturday October 4, 10am–4pm?
Saturday October 18, 10am–4pm

For more information and ticket details, visit the Royal Albert Hall website.