Uri and Michael roll into town
BY MARTIN BROOKS
12:00 – 07 June 2002
The Michael Jackson Express, due to roll into the city next week, is all sold out.
The 100-plus fans will be treated to a touch of Orient Express-style luxury as they board the train to the big event at St James’s Park next Friday.
The seven-carriage first class train – hired by Exeter City Football Club at a cost of £12,500 – will be pulled by locomotives Prince William and Prince Henry.
The train will pull out of London Paddington on Friday, heading for its destination of Exeter St David’s. But its arrival time is being kept hush hush.
Mike Lewis, joint vice-chairman of the football club, said: “We’ve been advised by the transport police that the time of arrival should be kept a secret. They suspect that if we advertise the exact time of arrival there will be mayhem at the station, with fans clamouring to get a glimpse of the star.
“I imagine it’s going to be the train trip of a lifetime for fans of Michael Jackson and the other performers.
“Michael Jackson will be in one coach, Patti Boulaye in another and other special guests in a third.
“The remaining four coaches will be taken up by the 115 people who bought tickets. Almost all the tickets went to European fans but some were bought by fans in the US.
“I can’t say whether they will be able to meet Michael Jackson or Patti Boulaye. It will be up to the individual stars. But I can guarantee that all the ticket holders will be invited to meet and speak to Uri Geller.”
Mr Lewis added: “We hired the train through a company called Rail Charter Services and the cost of hire will easily be met by the sale of tickets. I understand all seven coaches will be quite luxurious and they are all old-style first class coaches. They call them the Pride of the Nation Rolling Stock – they are as good as you get.”
The fundraising event at St James’s Park- An Audience with Michael Jackson – has had a growing list of stars added to it since it was first announced.
Among the big names the organisers say have agreed to appear with Jackson are illusionist David Blaine, 70s pop diva Patti Boulaye and controversial radio personality James Wale.
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“Uri Geller gave an absolutely resonating talk on his life and career. He had every single magician in the room on the edge of their seats trying to digest as much information as they could. Uri emphasized that the path to frame is through uniqueness and charisma and that professional entertainers must be creative in their pursuits of success and never shy away from publicity.”
Tannens Magic Blog
“The man is a natural magician. He does everything with great care, meticulous misdirection and flawless instinct. The nails are real, the keys are really borrowed, the envelopes are actually sealed, there are no stooges, there are no secret radio devices and there are no props from the magic catalogues.”
James Randi (In an open letter to Abracadabra Magazine)
Sir Elton John
“Eternity is down the hall And you sit there bending spoons In your mind, in your mind”
“I Have watched Uri Geller… I have seen that so I am a believer. It was my house key and the only way I would be able to use it is get a hammer and beat it out back flat again.”
“Better than watching Geller bending silver spoons, better than witnessing new born nebulae’s in bloom”