Michael Jackson American Bandstand performing Dangerous – 20th April 2002

Michael Jackson performed his song “Dangerous” on the 20th April 2002 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in California. You may recognise the name of the venue because Michael Jackson performed “Billie Jean” (and the moonwalk!) for the first time, at the same venue 20 years early on March 25, 1983 for the taping of “Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever”. It must have been quite emotional for him to the venue, as well as return to this special taping of “Dick Clark’s 50th Anniversary of American Bandstand” – 50 years is long time and it’s not surprising that Michael honour his friend, Dick Clark, who this week past away. Dick Clark was a big player in US entertainment but also a man with a big heart. He was a generous man who actually cared for people and looked after the people he worked with.

Michael Jackson performing “Dangerous”

After a rousing introduction from Clark, Michael appeared on the stage to perform “Dangerous”. This is an interesting performance, and a good performance with quite a lot of changes from previous shows. A few things:

Michael Jackson looked strong

Michael looked strong and he looked bigger than usual, a healthy weight. He was crouching a little bit more than usual (he always crouched!) but I must also add that for me, it is very clear, that he is also on some kind of medication or whatever you want to call it. You can see it in his face and you can see it in his moves. The moves and situation are a lot better than the 2001 Madison Square Garden one, but I can notice it. Nevertheless, he still looks good and performed extremely well

Change of performance

This performance was based upon the “Michael Jackson and friends 1999” performance but with some additional changes. We have a different broken down introduction. Originally we had a fast(er) introduction to the song, then for the 1999 show we had an intro which was way too slow, and this was a happy medium. I still feel that the original, American Music Awards and latter parts of the Dangerous Tour performances were the best, but that a performance like this is PERFECT, for an INDOOR arena, TV taped show. That’s because you notice the small moves a lot more.

Michael was not happy and performed the song twice!

Michael Jackson actually performed the song twice that night. He was not happy with the performance or reaction. You can see the crowd were really into it and they obviously used lot’s of the second taping. This is not unprecedented. During the 1996 World Music Awards Michael Jackson was not happy with his performance of “Earth Song” and also performance the song twice. (You can read about that HERE). A great atmosphere in the end for taping.

6 Backing Dancers

Michael Jackson and Levelle Sminth used six backing dancers for this performance. He has switched from 4 core dancers on the History tour, from 6, to many more on other live shows. I think that the 6 work really well, and form some great formations behind Michael. Levelle Smith looks young and they all do a great job – they look very cool indeed. They all gelled with Michael and formed a great unit.

Female Dancer

The “Dangerous” girl also, was one of the best Michael has used. She looked very beautiful and she danced with a hard edge. Perfectly Dangerous! Another change was her coming down, precariously on the pole. She wore the same costume as the one made for the Michael Jackson and Friends concert, which looked good. Another change was that she appeared during the chorus of the song and did a few moves – this was a good addition and keeps the performance well rounded – the song is about a Dangerous girl and her reappearance gives the piece some balance. Additional, a great use of an explosive charge at the beginning. This was also the case in 1999, but the explosion was totally missed during the taping, so you wouldn’t notice that there was one at all by watching the footage alone. This was the case during many of Michael’s tours – explosions from “Smooth Criminal“, “Jam”, “Earth Song”, “Beat it” etc are sometimes not picked up on the camera, which is unfortunate – not the case on the occasion!

Michael’s Costume

The costumes were also the same that he used for his performance in 1999 but there was one addition! Did you notice it? During the 1999 show, probably for the first time, Michael wasn’t wearing short trousers, so you couldn’t really see his white socks. For this show Michael added his Smooth Criminal white spats! They actually looked really good and worked well.

Michael’s Dancer

The dancer with the gun, approached, which looked like, too close and onto Michael head on, which meant that Michael had to move, which subsequently meant he forgot to remove the cigarette from the dancers mouth, which he usually does (actually he often forgot to do this and the stage manger had to run on and remove it so he didn’t slip on it later (again – see 1999 show)

Michael’s vocal performance

As with most of the performance’s of this song, it was completely mimed. That said, his microphone was turned on for a portion near the end and you cold hear some breathing and a few mouthed words, if you listen carefully!

Dick Clark

Dick Clark passed away this week. Not only was he a great host but he was a great producer and business man. He used his brain and became a powerhouse in the industry. There is a great documentary about him which aired on Bloomberg. Another documentary about him and his friendship with two Savants, Flo and Kayand is quite emotional. The two twins have a fixation with him, and he actually became their friend – off camera. You can read about here. Respect to Dick Clark for that alone.

By Anthony King (c)

Related articles

MICHAEL JACKSON DANGEROUS TOUR MUNICH, JUNE 27, 1992
MICHAEL JACKSON HISTORY TOUR LIVE IN SEOUL, KOREA
MICHAEL JACKSON DANGEROUS TOUR BUCHAREST LIVE CONCERT/DVD
MICHAEL JACKSON AND FRIENDS 1999 CHARITY CONCERTS
MICHAEL JACKSON’S HISTORY WORLD TOUR 1996
MICHAEL JACKSON’S DANGEROUS WORLD TOUR 1992
MICHAEL JACKSON’S BAD TOUR 1988
EARTH SONG LIVE AT THE WORLD MUSIC AWARDS 1996, MICHAEL JACKSON LIVE IN MONTE CARLO



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