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 Jackson’s Musical Director Refused To Believe The King Of Pop Was Dead

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PostJackson’s Musical Director Refused To Believe The King Of Pop Was Dead

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MICHAEL JACKSON’s THIS IS IT musical director KENNY ORTEGA found it so hard to believe the King of Pop had died on 25 June (09), he insisted on calling the promoter who broke the news back - to make sure it wasn’t a hoax.
Ortega had already started rehearsals and was awaiting Jackson’s arrival when he first heard about the tragedy.
But he was far from convinced Jackson was dead - even when members of his own family called to confirm the bad news, which was being reported online and on TV.
MICHAEL JACKSON’s THIS IS IT musical director KENNY ORTEGA found it so hard to believe the King of Pop had died on 25 June (09), he insisted on calling the promoter who broke the news back - to make sure it wasn’t a hoax.
Ortega had already started rehearsals and was awaiting Jackson’s arrival when he first heard about the tragedy.
But he was far from convinced Jackson was dead - even when members of his own family called to confirm the bad news, which was being reported online and on TV.
He says, “Our phones started going off and text messages and phone calls saying, ‘Is it true? Have you heard? This station is saying that…’ and, for quite some time, I just kept thinking to myself that the gardener could be going to the hospital, not Michael; that anything could be happening.
“Knowing the media and the way that it works around Michael, I just didn’t go there at all. I didn’t allow it to be that. Then it got more intense and more intense and then eventually I got a phone call from my family and then some pretty well known journalists and then from the hospital itself, from one of our promoters who said, ‘Michael is here and it is Michael. We’ll let you know when we know more.’
“All of us got together, the entire company stopped and we and we put Michael into the circle and all of us just imagined him back with us and in good health. We wanted to believe that the circumstances would end up bringing Michael back to us. Time stood still.
“Then I received a telephone call from one of our promoters who said Michael had died. I made him repeat it three times because I thought that I was hearing voices. It didn’t feel real. It was surreal. Then I said, ‘You know what, I’m going to hang up and I’m going to call you back and if this is really you then you’re going to answer the phone and then I’m going to know it’s the truth.’
“We called him back and he answered the phone and I said, ‘Tell me something that only the two of us would know.’ He said, ‘Kenny, it’s me. It’s Paul. Stop it. Stop it. Michael’s dead.’ It just felt like everything inside of me, like a building, collapsed. Everything inside of me just collapsed like a bomb had dropped. It was dark and painful. It was really horrible.”
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