David Gest

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David Gest
David Gest.png
Born David Alan Gest
(1953-05-11) May 11, 1953 (age 62)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Occupation Producer, television personality
Spouse(s) Liza Minnelli (m. 2002; div. 2007)[1][2]

David Alan Gest (born May 11, 1953) is an American producer and UK television personality. Gest produced the highest rated musical television special in history, Michael Jackson: 30th Anniversary Celebration: The Solo Years in 2001, which was the last reunion of Michael Jackson and the Jacksons in 17 years and Jackson's last solo concerts. Gest appeared on the 2006 series of the British reality television show I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!. He became the first American to have three prime-time series in the UK. He recently appeared in Celebrity Big Brother in the UK but due to illness had to leave after 13 days. He frequently made tabloid headlines during his marriage with Liza Minnelli.


I'm a Celebrity, Get Me out of Here![edit]

Gest finished in 4th place on the 2006 series of I'm a Celebrity, Get Me out of Here! on ITV in the UK and proved to be so popular he was the only contestant (as well as American) to get three prime time television series after the show finished. His stories and "Get Me Outta Here" song with fellow contestant Toby Anstis made Gest a national star. He was voted off the show on November 30, 2006, a day before the show finished. Two days later, Gest appeared on the Royal Variety Show in London in front of Prince Charles, for which he received a standing ovation. Another two days later, a controversy arose on the cover of 2 major UK papers stating that more than 35,000 votes were unjustly not counted in Gest's favor when the network ITV1 had a voting glitch which would have changed the outcome of the show but Gest declined a recount.

Other work[edit]

In January 2007, Gest appeared as a judge on ITV1's Soapstar Superstar, for one night replacing Michael Ball who was coaching the singers.

Later that month it was announced that Gest had signed a one-year deal by ITV to appear in his own reality series entitled This Is David Gest. The show began on April 22, 2007. He also took cameras for a rare glimpse of the Jackson family house in Encino, California, where he met Tito and his children as well as matriarch Katherine Jackson. He was one of the four judges on ITV1's entertainment series Grease Is the Word and also starred on "Greased Lightnin'".

Gest paid ITV to be released from his contract in July and ITV came back saying they had no idea what to do with him. Gest was quick to come out and say that he wanted to be released: "My lawyers negotiated an early release so I could host The Friday Night Project on Channel 4", Gest told The Sun.[3] Gest also stated his ratings were the best ITV ever had in that time slot and had been asked to renew his contract. Gest has appeared on more than one hundred shows on UK television.

In April 2007, his autobiography, titled Simply The Gest, was released. The book is a mixture of memoirs, and Gest's personal views on life.

In June 2008, Gest contributed a monologue to the song 'Bring You Down' by Attic Lights in which he delved into his split from Liza Minnelli. In one line, Gest says: "I never knew a woman could be so cold."[4]

On 12 December 2010, Gest appeared on Channel 4 in a Christmas special edition of Come Dine With Me alongside Diarmuid Gavin, Hannah Waterman and Sherrie Hewson. Gest won joint first place with Gavin on the show.

Gest toured the UK for nearly two months from January 31, 2014 with his show entitled 'David Gest's Legends Of Soul Live Concert!' featuring 10 legendary soul acts. The tour was so successful he announced an additional 30 dates in the UK of 'David Gest's Soul Legends Live In Concert!' that began on October 9, 2014. He appeared on a "repeat" of Celebrity Fantasy Homes on the 14 June 2014 on the British Really channel. Gest toured the UK in September 2015 playing 14 cities with 'David Gest's (I've Had) The Time Of My Life Tour!', featuring legendary Righteous Brother Bill Medley in his first ever UK tour. The tour played to sold-out theatres with more than 200,00 people attending and lasted until mid October. 12 legendary R&B acts appeared on the bill with Medley including Deniece Williams, Peabo Bryson, Billy Paul, Dorothy Moore, Atlantic Starr's lead singer Barbara Weathers, Freda Payne, Gregory Abbott, The Tymes, CeCe Peniston and former Three Degrees lead singer Sheila Ferguson, to name a few. He will be touring the UK again in July 2016 playing 24 dates.

On 5 January 2016, Gest entered the Celebrity Big Brother house as a contestant. On 18 January 2016, Gest left the house on medical grounds.

Personal life[edit]

Gest was born in Los Angeles and grew up in Southern California where he counted Michael Jackson and his brothers as his childhood best friends. He currently resides in Memphis, Tennessee and York, Yorkshire.

Gest has admitted that in the 1980s he had two plastic surgery operations from the same plastic surgeon used by Michael Jackson. He has stated he regrets the operations but no one could have stopped him at the time.[5]

Gest and Liza Minnelli were married on March 16, 2002, and separated less than a year and a half later in July 2003.[6] In October 2003 he sued her for $10 million claiming that she had been violent and physically abusive during their marriage, behavior the affidavit blamed on Minnelli's persistent alcoholism.[6] Minnelli denied the accusations, claiming Gest was simply after money. The suit was dismissed in September 2006 for lack of triable issue of fact.[7]


  1. ^ "Minnelli/Gest Divorce To Be Finalised This Week". Femalefirst.co.uk. 2007-04-19. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  2. ^ "The David Gest and Liza Minnelli Divorce". Recordssitereviews.com.  Archived November 27, 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "Yahoo News UK & Ireland - Latest World News & UK News Headlines". Uk.news.yahoo.com. 2011-04-20. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  4. ^ Dingwall, John (2008-06-06). "David Gest's star role on new Attic Lights song". Dailyrecord.co.uk. Retrieved 2015-07-01. 
  5. ^ Mccaffrey, Julie (16 April 2007). "David Gest:My Story - Part 1". The Daily Mirror. Retrieved 28 September 2010. 
  6. ^ a b Maull, Samual (17 January 2007). "Minnelli, Gest End Lawsuits, to Divorce". The Washington Post. Retrieved 28 September 2010. 
  7. ^ "Hubby Claims Liza Minnelli Beat Him". thesmokinggun.com. 21 October 2003. Retrieved 28 September 2010. 

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