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Thursday, 8 March, 2001, 09:51 GMT
Best man Jackson meets fans
Uri Geller and Michael Jackson
Uri Geller and his best man Michael Jackson
Hundreds of Michael Jackson devotees queued for hours to catch a glimpse of their hero at a fans' convention in London on Wednesday night.


I am humbled by the incredible entertainment

Michael Jackson
Jackson put in a brief appearance at the 10th annual Michael Jackson Day at the Hammersmith Apollo, London, a few hours after acting as best man at Uri Geller's wedding.

The singer took to the stage to tell fans he was overwhelmed by their welcome.

He said: "I am humbled by the incredible entertainment. I thank you from the bottom of my heart."

He said he was working on a new album which would be ready in two months, adding: "I love you all from the bottom of my heart, thank you."

Jackson and Rabbi Shmuley Boteach
Jackson with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach
All proceeds from the event went to his Heal the Kids Foundation.

Wedding guest

Earlier in the day he had kept guests at psychic Uri Geller's wedding ceremony waiting, when he turned up two hours late.

Geller invited the singer to the Jewish ceremony, where he renewed his wedding vows with his wife Hanna, 50, at their Berkshire home.

There was tight security for more than one hundred guests, who included broadcaster Sir David Frost, Eurythmics' Dave Stewart and former Formula One world motor racing champion Nigel Mansell.

Jackson handed Geller a gold ring to place on his wife's finger after a blessing ritual performed by Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.

The guests were treated to a lavish kosher banquet in a marquee in Geller's garden, which included sushi, smoked salmon and falafel.


Michael was incredible - he came here with two broken bones in his foot

Uri Geller
Jackson, who arrived at 1500 GMT, did not mingle with guests but remained seated with his friends Geller and Rabbi Boteach in the chuppah, a canopy used to perform Jewish marriage ceremonies.

Mixed reception

A handful of Jackson fans waited outside the house in Sonning for a glimpse of their hero, but most villagers appeared unmoved.

"Most people in the village probably haven't heard of Wacko Jacko," said school assistant Valerie Backhouse.

Geller praised the singer for attending the ceremony.


It was unbelievable to see Michael sat at my chuppah

Uri Geller
"It was great," he said.

"Michael was incredible because he came here with two broken bones in his foot.

"He was pleasant, stopped for autographs for my friends and their children.

"It was unbelievable to see Michael sat at my chuppah."

Crutches

Jackson is still on crutches after a fall at his California ranch Neverland, despite Geller's "laying-on of hands" at his London hotel.

"I chose Michael because he is a good friend and I wanted him to experience a Jewish wedding," Geller said.

Geller, who married Hanna in a civil ceremony nearly 30 years ago, added: "I was astounded that here I was after so many years getting married in a Jewish manner.

"And Michael gave me the ring which I put on Hanna's finger."

Jackson, 42, was also late for his address to students at the Oxford Union on Tuesday night, missing a specially arranged dinner.

The father-of-two was launching his global initiative for children called Heal the Kids, which has been founded with the help of Geller and Rabbi Boteach.

See also:

07 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Jackson's drizzly reception
06 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Jackson calls for children's rights
06 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Jackson address: Full text
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
A life in pictures: Michael Jackson
06 Mar 01 | Entertainment
The rabbi, the psychic and the pop star
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Jackson's CD spree
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Oxford's star chamber
05 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Jackson's life in the spotlight
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