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"MJ" highlights Michael Jackson's creative genius in musical coming to Denver Center for the Performing Arts

"MJ" highlights Michael Jackson's creative genius in musical coming to DCPA
"MJ" highlights Michael Jackson's creative genius in musical coming to DCPA 02:52

In 10 days the creative genius of Michael Jackson will be brought back to life at the Buell Theatre, as the Denver Center for the Performing Arts hosts "MJ" the musical for two and a half weeks.

"MJ" is a two-and-a-half-hour musical that uses Jackson's greatest hits to tell a story of how he created the Dangerous World Tour. However, the cast and crew do a great job at also telling the story of how Jackson developed a dedication to perfecting his craft.

"It is really inspiring to have art that outlasts you," said Roman Banks, the actor who was cast to portray Jackson in the national tour.

Banks said he has grown an even greater respect for Jackson through his role and has learned so much about why Jackson was so committed to entertaining to the highest level.


"He was so intentional with what he wore, how he wore his hair, how he moved and talked, the way he staged performances, the way he choreographed," Banks said. "Everything was so geniusly (sic) interpreted to not only serve the current time he was living in, but the time he wouldn't be here after."

CBS News Colorado's Dillon Thomas traveled to Salt Lake City for an exclusive advanced preview of the show. Afterward, he spent his day with the cast and crew backstage. There, all of those who spoke with Thomas talked about how they grew up not only listening to Jackson, but also imitating his dancing and singing.

Now that they are cast in the production, they said they've learned how well-rounded of an artist Jackson was.

"You can't just be a one trick pony," one of the cast members said.

Backstage the cast is consistently striving to make sure they imitate Jackson as best as possible for the audiences, something the production also educates audiences about.

"(MJ) talked about wanting to perfect perfection," Banks said. "It is continuing to be excellent, never settling."


"We are limitless, and MJ strived to be limitless to the end of time," said Jamaal Fields-Green, the alternate for MJ. "His fanbase is massive. So, there is a lot of expectations from people who come to see the show."

Those who are part of the show said they hoped audiences would walk away from the musical with a better understanding of Jackson's commitment to his art, while also feeling like they had a night to relive Jackson's music on stage.

"(The story is about) being the best artist, but also being the best person you can be in whatever you do. Giving it your all and owing it to yourself and others to give it 100%," Fields-Green said. "You get to see the human behind the icon. It really humanizes Michael. Of course, you are going to have the music, of course you are going to have the dance. But the story of it all is what pulls the audience in. To completely see who this juggernaut was. And he was a human being at the end of the day."

MJ plays the Buell Theatre April 10 through the 28. For more information on tickets from the DCPA visit the officials website

CBS News Colorado is a proud partner of the Denver Center for the Performing Arts.

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