Sonny G. has put his blood, sweat, and tears into his tribute show honoring pop icon Michael Jackson.
He spent two or three hours a day going over films, TV performances, videos on MTV and VH1, and studying anything he could find on the King of Pop.
“I would tape-record everything, play it back and I would just watch it, watch it, watch it, and then I would go apply it and then I would record myself,” Sonny G said. “Of course, I hated everything at first. I just kept practicing, and I mean still if I watch myself sometimes I’m like that’s not good, but I keep perfecting it.”
When Sonny G puts on his Jackson-inspired outfits and grooms his hair like the icon, he “melts” into character. Albuquerque will get to witness the result during the King of Pop Resurrected: Theatrical Michael Jackson Experience on Saturday, Aug. 3, at the South Broadway Cultural Center.
“It really brings the choreography alive, and then memorizing it and knowing the cues,” he said. “And then writing the show and everything, and knowing when the fog cannons go or the CO2 blast or just a bunch of stuff. It’s a lot of choreography and a lot of placement where will I be walking to. So, now, when I go to the rehearsals – I do about four days a week – I go through the entire show, which is almost a two-hour show front to back, like it’s a live show in the studio and then I’ll do probably another hour on what didn’t work, what didn’t feel right, what’s not organic. I’ll just work on everything. It pretty much plays in my head like a movie when I’m doing it. I’ll just try to match it so much.”
Sonny G brought a Michael Jackson tribute show to the South Broadway Cultural Center last year. He has added more to his current show to include a tribute to R&B, funk, pop, soul singer and songwriter Bruno Mars.
“It’s a really spectacular tribute,” Sonny G said. “You really feel like you’re there in concert with Bruno Mars. If anybody’s ever seen him in concert, he’s phenomenal. So we’re really trying to pay homage to that and stay true to the authenticity of it. I consider him a new icon, so that’s why I put him in the show.”
But the focus of the tribute show remains Jackson.
“I’ve added a couple of new things, special effects for the crowd and everything,” Sonny G said. “I can’t wait to bring it back. It’s just been a phenomenal turnout. Everybody loves it nationwide. It’s just been great. It’s 90 minutes – almost two hours of Michael Jackson hits.”