Whitney Houston is set to appear on the concert stage once again. Eight years after her death, a holographic Houston will go on a European tour that starts in England on Feb. 25 and runs through early April, with additional stops in Europe, Mexico, and North America to be announced at a later date, according to Billboard.
The tour will be brought to the fans by the late singer’s estate and BASE Hologram. The concert set includes a majority of her biggest hits: “How Will I Know,” “Saving All My Love For You,” “I Will Always Love You,” along with some unexpected songs, including a cover of Steve Winwood’s “Higher Love” that Houston first recorded three decades prior. The show, which was first conceived five years ago, used a body double along with hundreds of hours of Houston performances and extensive CGI synthesizing.
“We created the hologram the same way they did Carrie Fisher in the Star Wars movie Rogue One,” said Marty Tudor, CEO of BASE Hologram, which has previously revived performing versions of dead singers including Roy Orbison and Maria Callas. “It’s lengthy, it’s tedious, it’s a big, complicated process, but I think it worked.”
The concept of the performance is the brainchild of Houston herself, in at least one aspect. While on her final European tour, she had an “unplugged” section of her show, with a stripped-down band and minimal fanfare. Houston liked that so much that shortly before her death at age 48 on the eve of the 2012 Grammy Awards, she expressed a desire to one day do an entire tour that way, according to CNN.
Houston joins a list of music artists whose estates still earn money even after death. Michael Jackson, Prince, Bob Marley, and John Lennon (just to name a few) are all musicians who have earned big bucks posthumously. According to Forbes, Jackson, the King of Pop, earned an estimated $287 million from the sale of his estate’s stake in EMI Music Publishing to Sony in 2018, more than nine years after his untimely demise. Lennon, between his solo work and his Beatles oeuvre, still sells nearly 2 million albums annually.