George Michael’s family have reportedly blocked plans for a tribute concert in the late singer’s memory.
British television presenter Esther Rantzen, 77, had first broached the idea of a concert shortly after George’s death in December, 2016. Esther had hoped the event, which she envisaged being held at London’s Royal Albert Hall, would raise money for her charity Childline – of which George was an active supporter during his life.
However, as she attended the Pride of Britain Awards in the capital on Monday, Esther told the Daily Mirror that George’s relatives had halted plans for the event.
“There will no longer be a tribute concert because his family said no,” she said. “It was a real shame as I’d have loved to celebrate his music and give the fans a chance to say goodbye – and it would have been to benefit his favourite charity, too.”
But she added: “Once the family say no there’s nothing we can do.’
It had been touch and go as to whether the family would approve of the concert, with reports in April suggesting they were unsure whether to authorise the event or not. All was apparently resting on a meeting between Esther and the family, with a source telling the Mirror: “The most important thing about organising this is that the family approve of everything.
“At the moment there is a big possibility it won’t happen because the family aren’t on board. The meeting will either make or break plans.”
George was a big supporter of Childline, which Esther founded in 1986, during his career, and even donated £2 million ($2.6 million) in royalties from his 1996 hit Jesus To A Child to the organisation.