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David Gest

  • Birthplace: Los Angeles, California
  • Birthday: May 11
Date of passing: 
April 12, 2016

David Gest was a music producer and reality television star who known for his starring role on the self-titled British reality series This Is David Gest, as well as the unscripted programs I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here! and the U.K.'s Celebrity Big Brother. Gest, who for a time was married to singer-acytress Liza Minnelli, was also a concert promoter and music-industry veteran, and in 2001 he staged two Michael Jackson concerts at Madison Square Garden, featuring a reunion with the Jackson Five.

Gest had been a long-time friend of Jackson and contributed as a writer and producer on the 2001 concert, which aired as the CBS television special Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Celebration. Gest also served as a producer on the 2011 feature documentary Michael Jackson: The Life of an Icon.

Additionally, he appeared on many British reality television shows, often centered on celebrities, including Soapstar Superstar, Greased Lightnin’, Grease Is the Word, Are You Smarter Than a 10 Year Old?, Celebrity Ding Dong, Celebrity Juice, and Cash in the Celebrity Attic.

David Gest was a music producer and reality television star who known for his starring role on the self-titled British reality series This Is David Gest, as well as the unscripted programs I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here! and the U.K.'s Celebrity Big Brother. Gest, who for a time was married to singer-acytress Liza Minnelli, was also a concert promoter and music-industry veteran, and in 2001 he staged two Michael Jackson concerts at Madison Square Garden, featuring a reunion with the Jackson Five.

Gest had been a long-time friend of Jackson and contributed as a writer and producer on the 2001 concert, which aired as the CBS television special Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Celebration. Gest also served as a producer on the 2011 feature documentary Michael Jackson: The Life of an Icon.

Additionally, he appeared on many British reality television shows, often centered on celebrities, including Soapstar Superstar, Greased Lightnin’, Grease Is the Word, Are You Smarter Than a 10 Year Old?, Celebrity Ding Dong, Celebrity Juice, and Cash in the Celebrity Attic.

Gest began his career in music at the age of 17, when he landed a job as a publicist for London Records, where he was later promoted to director of national publicity. He helped handle the careers of Tom Jones, ZZ Top and Al Green, among others. Then he started his own public relations firm, whose early clients included Green, Burt Bacharach and the Doobie Brothers.

Gest and Minnelli married in 2002 at a celebrity-studded ceremony, including Jackson as best man and Elizabeth Taylor as maid of honor. They separated the following year and were divorced in 2007.

In 2007 he published a memoir titled Simply the Gest.

He died April 12, 2016, in London, England. He was 62.

 

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