*NSYNC will not be performing at the all-star salute to Michael Jackson due to scheduling conflicts, according to the event’s producer David Gest.
The pop group was originally scheduled to perform with Jackson on September 7, but Gest released a statement today (August 22) in which he explained:
“Michael Jackson and *NSYNC will not have time to rehearse the ‘Dancing Machine’ number with the Jacksons in the way Michael planned to present it. Unfortunately, *NSYNC will be rehearsing their MTV Video Music Awards performance on Wednesday and Thursday while Michael will be rehearsing for his shows at the Garden. The two schedules just conflict and *NSYNC will not be in New York prior to that. Michael looks forward to working with *NSYNC in the future as he is a very big fan of the group.”
The news must come as a blow to *NSYNC member Lance Bass, who recently told LAUNCH how much he was looking forward to performing with Jackson: “In some way, shape, or form Michael has affected everybody in the music industry – every writer, every singer, everyone. He’s one of the biggest influences in music of all times. Every metal-head knows who Michael Jackson is. Everybody knows who he is, and to be able to collaborate with him-that’s a dream we’ve all had.”
In addition to performances by Michael Jackson, the Jackson 5 and the Jacksons, the updated lineup without *NSYNC is as follows:
September 7: Marc Anthony; Bobby Brown; Ray Charles; Deborah Cox; Destiny’s Child; Gloria Estefan; Billy Gilman; Whitney Houston; James Ingram; Quincy Jones & The Legends Of Jazz including Herbie Hancock, Al Jarreau, Herbie Mann, Les McCann, David “Fathead” Newman, Jimmy Smith, Clark Terry & Cassandra Wilson; Liza Minelli; Monica; Mya; Jill Scott; Shaggy featuring Ricardo “Rikrok” Ducent & Rayvon; Britney Spears; Tamia; Usher; and many surprise guests.
September 10: Marc Anthony; Bobby Brown; Aaron Carter; Deborah Cox; Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott; Nelly Furtado; Gloria Gaynor; Whitney Houston; Al Jarreau; Gladys Knight; Lil’ Romeo; Ricky Martin; Liza Minelli; Monica; Mya; 98 Degrees; Jill Scott; 3T; Usher; Luther Vandross; Dionne Warwick; and many surprise guests.
The two-evening concert event will be filmed as a two-hour primetime special for the CBS television network, to air during the 2001-2002 season.