MJ's promoter to provide 11,000 tickets for memorial
Moscow: Michael Jackson's promoter has announced that 11,000 free tickets would be available to the public for the King of Pop's memorial service, to be held next Tuesday in Los Angeles.
The head of AEG Live, Randy Phillips, announced on Thursday that the ceremony would be held at the Staples Centre, which is owned by the company.
Ken Sunshine, a spokesman for the Jackson family, said the public memorial service would start at 1700 GMT.
Los Angeles City Council official Dennis Zine said the family should consider delaying the memorial to allow planning time, as larger number of people are expected to attend the ceremony.
"If you can imagine 100,000 people show up and you have 20,000 capacity, there is not sufficient room. Now you have a crowd-control problem," Zine told reporters Thursday.
On Tuesday morning, Michael Jackson's body will be escorted by a motorcade from the Forest Lawn Mortuary in Los Angeles to the Staples Centre. Hundreds of thousands of fans are expected to gather along the highway.
US President Barack Obama paid tribute to Jackson in an interview on Thursday night.
When asked by a reporter why he hadn't yet commented on Jackson's death, the President said, "Look, you are the first person who has actually asked me about it."
"I think that Michael Jackson is, will go down in history as one of our greatest entertainers. I grew up on his music. Still have all his stuff on my iPod. I think that his brilliance as a performer also was paired with a tragic end, in many ways, sad personal life. But I'm glad to see that he is being remembered primarily for the great joy that he brought to a lot of people through his extraordinary gifts as an entertainer."
Michael Jackson died on July 25 following cardiac arrest at the age of 50. The circumstances of his death remain uncertain. Investigators are awaiting a toxicology report.