• BREAKING NEWS ABC shows live and on-demand -- Download the WATCH ABC app!

Michael Jackson makeup artist testifies in AEG lawsuit

A court sketch shows Michael Jackson's makeup artist Karen Faye breaking down on the stand Thursday, May 9, 2013, in the wrongful death suit against AEG. (Sketch by Bill Robles)
May 9, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Michael Jackson's makeup artist took the stand Thursday in the wrongful death suit against AEG, giving a behind-the-scenes look at how promoters dealt with Jackson's pain and trouble sleeping.

Jurors viewed images through the eyes of Karen Faye, who for 27 years applied the star's makeup, covered his scars and testified that she was once asked to give Jackson injections of pain medication.

Breaking down several times, Faye testified that it was burns to Jackson's scalp that started it all. His hair caught fire in the 1983 shooting of a Pepsi commercial.

Faye said Jackson began to use medicated pain patches. Later, a doctor administered medication.

The tour director then was Paul Gongaware, who went on to become CEO for AEG Live, now being sued by the Jackson family. The plaintiffs accuse AEG execs of causing Jackson's sedative overdose death through negligence.

Faye told jurors that before one concert in the 1990s, which included a stunt that shot Jackson in the air, she found Jackson out of it.

She stated that he was kind of glazed over, and that he stumbled and fell over. "He can't go on," she told the doctor. "You can't make him."

Faye said that the doctor responded by grabbing her around the neck, pushing her against the wall and telling her, "Yes, I can."

The testimony is elicited by Katherine Jackson's attorney in an effort to show that AEG knew Michael Jackson's history and physical limitations, yet allegedly still pressured him to perform beyond his capabilities.

Faye told the court that even decades earlier, Jackson needed as many as two days to recover from a concert. The adrenalin wouldn't let him sleep.

For the This Is It tour, the schedule alarmed her. She testified she told director Kenny Ortega that Jackson could not do it.

She stated that the shows were too close and that there had to be changes.

Ortega "kind of fluffed it off," she stated, adding that he didn't seem concerned.

Faye resumes her testimony Friday, when AEG will get their chance to question her.


Load Comments