Michael Jackson demands sing and sign
Michael Jackson wants all the children who will perform with him during his London residency to know sign language
Michael Jackson has demanded all the children in his choir know sign language.
The 'Thriller' singer is due to kick-off his 50-date residency at London's O2 arena next month and has sent an email telling promoters AEG the requirements he wants for his team of young singers.
A source said: "Normally when we cast choirs for acts, it's quite a laborious task. But in this case, it's proving a near impossibility. Jackson is a perfectionist and wants it exactly right and that means every child being able to do sign language.
"AEG are desperate to keep him happy and so are pulling out all the stops to make it happen. But it's a race against time."
The 50-year-old star also wants the choir to made up of "exactly equal" numbers of black, white, mixed-race and Asian children.
Auditions take place in London next week and the children will be paid to try out.
According to Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper, the email stated: "No past professional experience is necessary. due to children's work permit laws we will cast more than one choir."
Jackson is also looking for six snare drummers and has banned them from having beards.
Another email read: "They must be young adults, clean-cut and of mixed ethnicity.
"They must be real drummers, so please do not waste our time suggesting people who are not."
Last month, it was revealed Jackson - who is rumoured to be battling skin cancer - would kick off his concert run on July 13, five days later than originally planned.
Shows scheduled to take place on July 10, 12 and 14 have been moved to the end of the residency in March 2010.