Blur to headline 'BT London Live' concert

21 February 2012

BLUR TO HEADLINE ‘BT LONDON LIVE’ CONCERT ON AUGUST 12 IN HYDE PARK

THE SPECIALS & NEW ORDER TO SUPPORT

PART OF CITYWIDE CELEBRATIONS FOR THE 2012 GAMES

www.btlondonlive.com

www.molpresents.com

BLUR - winners of the prestigious Outstanding Contribution Award at the Brit Awards 2012, were today announced as the headline act for the BT LONDON LIVE CLOSING CEREMONY CELEBRATION CONCERT in Hyde Park, a unique concert celebrating the climax of the city’s celebrations for the London Olympic Games and organised by the Mayor of London, The Royal Parks and the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.

BT London Live presents BLUR - Damon Albarn, Alex James, Graham Coxon and Dave Rowntree – for this milestone performance. It will be Blur’s single major live performance in 2012 and sees them back onstage in Hyde Park following their legendary sold-out dates of summer 2009.

This massive open-air concert staged in London’s Hyde Park coincides with one of the key moments of the London 2012 Olympic Games, Sunday August 12, the date of the Closing Ceremony. Not only will the thousands of ticketholders for this unique event see one of the UK’s biggest bands exclusively live on stage, but they will also be able to witness the London 2012 celebrations as giant screens in Hyde Park show highlights of the Closing Ceremony from the Olympic Park courtesy of the BBC.

Joining Blur for this ‘Best Of British’ line up will be The Specials and New Order with a Special Guest to be announced soon.

For over two decades, Blur has been one of the most influential and creative bands to come out of the UK, picking up awards, accolades and widespread critical acclaim. Their live career has spanned clubs, parks, dog-tracks, theatres, museums and arenas, and some truly memorable performances at festivals around the world – including an emotional return to Glastonbury in 2009.

Tickets for the BT London Live Closing Ceremony Celebration Concert go on sale Friday 24 February 2012 at 9.00am priced at £55.00 plus booking fee, and will be available from www.btlondonlive.com.

BT customers will have 48-hour priority access for tickets for the Opening and Closing Ceremony Celebration Concerts held at Hyde Park on 27 July and 12 August, via www.bt.com/londonlive.

Another BT London Live ticketed Celebration Concert in Hyde Park is set for Friday July 27 to coincide with the London 2012 Opening Ceremony. Headline acts and ticket prices for the BT London Live Opening Ceremony Celebration Concert will be announced shortly.

BT London Live’ is a partnership between the Mayor of London, The Royal Parks and The London Borough of Tower Hamlets, and is a key part of the citywide programme of events being organised by the Mayor of London to celebrate the London 2012 Games. Throughout the Games, BT London Live is offering plenty of other opportunities for the public to catch London 2012 sporting action live on big screens and enjoy top flight entertainment for free.

As previously announced three iconic open-air locations, Hyde Park, Victoria Park and Trafalgar Square will be transformed this summer to offer hundreds of thousands of Londoners and visitors to the city the chance to join in the excitement of the biggest sporting event on the planet – the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games.

As well as giant state of the art screens for crowds to watch live action from the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, each location will provide a stunning backdrop for a variety of entertainment and attractions for people of all ages, including live music, outdoor arts and performance, plus opportunities to try out different sports.

Log on to www.btlondonlive.com now for full details and to register interest.

Each BT London Live site will offer its own unique experience on the following dates:

BT London Live Hyde Park, July 27 – August 12

BT London Live Hyde Park, one of the eight Royal Parks, will deliver unparalleled viewing of the Olympic Games via a series of large screens, including the UK’s largest. The live BBC coverage will include the Olympic medal events; with cultural entertainment and live music also on offer. BT London Live Hyde Park will be free to access between July 28 and August 11. The Opening Ceremony Celebration Concert on July 27 and the Closing Ceremony Celebration Concert on August 12 will be ticketed but other days will be free to access.

BT London Live Victoria Park, July 27 – August 12

BT London Live Victoria Park in Tower Hamlets will provide a more intimate viewing experience with a 'sports café' style approach to enjoying the London 2012 Olympic Games. Two giant screens will share the park with a series of smaller screens showing BBC live coverage. There will be an emphasis on sports participation with a range of ‘have a go’ sessions at the Victoria Park sports courts, and a series of evening concerts and cultural entertainment will enliven the site. The Opening and Closing Ceremonies will be broadcast live at BT London Live Victoria Park from the nearby Olympic Stadium.

BT London Live Trafalgar Square, August 29 – September 9

Once the focus shifts to the London 2012 Paralympic Games, BT London Live will relocate to Trafalgar Square, where a giant screen will show live coverage courtesy of Channel 4 Television. There will also be sporting activity, cultural entertainment and evening concerts.

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson commented: “We're working with amazing partners to create a summer like no other and this barnstorming line-up has some of the best British music of the past few years. It's one of the many highlights in the plethora of celebrations we are hosting across the city and for everyone attending it will be a fitting climax to the celebrations of the Olympic Games. But even if you don't make the concert, all the BT London Live sites are putting on plenty of great entertainment on other days, as well as live sporting action, for free.”

Colin Buttery, Acting Chief Executive for The Royal Parks said: "Hyde Park is set to host the largest BT London Live site and The Royal Parks is looking forward to welcoming thousands of visitors from London, the UK and across the world to join in the celebrations. The summer of 2012 is going to be unforgettable and the atmosphere in BT London Live Hyde Park and throughout the capital will be electric. With eleven Olympic and Paralympic events taking place across six Royal Parks, including the Triathlon and Marathon Swimming competitions in Hyde Park, The Royal Parks is playing a key role in hosting some very exciting events."

Mayor of Tower Hamlets, Lutfur Rahman said: "The Closing Ceremony Celebration Concert promises to be a great event and sets the tone for the rest of the celebrations. I look forward to welcoming Londoners and visitors from across the country and further afield to join in the festival atmosphere at Victoria Park which will be hosting a unique programme of music and sports during the Olympics.”

There are three options for entry into ‘BT London Live’.

1. The Opening and Closing Ceremony Celebration Concerts at Hyde Park on July 27 and August 12 will be ticketed. Tickets will be available via btlondonlive.com.

2. Walk in on the day – all BT London Live dates except the two Celebration Concerts in Hyde Park will offer free access, with people able to turn up on the day, subject to capacity. Hyde Park and Victoria Park will also offer 'Guaranteed Entry Advanced Tickets ' for access before 2pm – see below.

3. Guaranteed Entry Advanced Tickets – up to four tickets per person will be available to be booked in advance for entry in to BT London Live Hyde Park or BT London Live Victoria Park before 2pm on a specified day, a transaction fee of £3.50 will apply per booking. Registration via btlondonlive.com will be required for these tickets. These tickets will not be available for the Opening and Closing Ceremony Celebration Concerts and on days that the Triathlon takes place – this applies to Hyde Park only. The Triathlon will take place in Hyde Park on Saturday 4 August and Tuesday 7 August.

Notes to Editors

Blur as we know it was born in 1989 when the band signed to Food/EMI. Debut album Leisure (1991) announced the arrival of a band with popsuss warped by an art-punk eccentricity. Yet Blur had more in them: namely, a revolution in the sound of English popular music. Second album Modern Life Is Rubbish reintroduced the idea that English rock music could be cool, and by the time their third album Parklife emerged in 1994, the rest of the UK had caught up.

The Great Escape (1995) refined the sound palette of Britpop, but Blur were already moving on. 1997's Blur was an about-face - scuffed and noisy and un-English. Follow-up 13 was an even a more radical adventure in sound as William Orbit refereed a truce between organic punkpop and new-fangled technology.

Seventh album Think Tank (2003) was Blur’s first as a three piece after the temporary departure of founding guitarist Graham Coxon, featuring an eclectic variety of rhythms and textures and glorious melodies.

In 2009 Blur reconvened as a four-piece to play a series of UK shows including two sold out dates at Hyde Park and a historic Sunday night appearance at Glastonbury. A film about Blur, No Distance Left To Run, was released in 2010.

The Mayor of London is hosting a huge programme of free events and celebrations to add to the excitement of 2012, including ones especially commissioned for a citywide programme of free events that will add to and complement the London 2012 Festival. BT London Live brings live action from the Games and sporting activities and entertainment to Hyde Park, Victoria Park and Trafalgar Square. Other events include Secrets, with artists and performers transforming hidden and lesser known locations, and Showtime, an outdoor arts festival in high streets, parks and open spaces around the capital. News and information about these will appear on the website www.molpresents.com. This will also feature events and happenings in the build up to A Summer Like No Other, including the St George's Day and St Patrick's Day celebrations and the Russian Maslenitsa festival. To be the first to know what's happening, sign up or follow us at www.molpresents.com / www.facebook.com/mayoroflondonpresents / www.twitter.com/molpresents

The Royal Parks, which manages eight Royal Parks including Hyde Park, will play a central role in helping to deliver a successful London 2012 Games. In addition to hosting BT London Live Hyde Park, the largest BT London Live site, 11 Olympic and Paralympic Games will take place across six Royal Parks. These events include the Triathlon and Marathon Swimming competitions in Hyde Park, the Equestrian and Modern Pentathlon events in Greenwich Park and within St James’s Park, the Beach Volleyball competition on Horse Guards Parade and the Road Race events on The Mall.

Almost 40 million Londoners and tourists visit the eight Royal Parks each year. The 5,000 acres of historic parkland provide unparalleled opportunities for enjoyment, exploration and healthy living in the heart of London. The Royal Parks are: Bushy Park, The Green Park, Greenwich Park, Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, The Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill, Richmond Park and St James's Park. For further information please visit: www.royalparks.org.uk or sign up at www.facebook.com/TheRoyalParksLondon.

London Borough of Tower Hamlets Tower Hamlets is the heart of the ‘East End’. Rich in history, it presents a vibrant mix of old and new, creating a bustling community unique in culture and character. Taking its name from the Tower of London and the hamlets that surround it, Tower Hamlets covers an area of eight square miles and has a population of around 220,000. It is bounded by the Thames to the South and the boroughs of Newham (east), Hackney (north) and the City of London (west).

As one of the six Olympic host boroughs, the Mayor of Tower Hamlets, Lutfur Rahman and the council are looking to maximise the benefits that London 2012 will bring to the borough’s residents. Projects include the £11 million High Street 2012 programme which is rejuvenating the thoroughfare that links the city to the Olympic Park, and the promotion of Brick Lane as Curry Capital 2012 to generate tourism. Visit www.towerhamlets.gov.uk

About BT

BT is one of the world’s leading providers of communications solutions and services, operating in more than 170 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to our customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband and internet products and services and converged fixed/mobile products and services. BT consists principally of four lines of business: BT Global Services, Openreach, BT Retail and BT Wholesale.

In the year ended 31 March 2011, BT Group’s revenue was £20,076 million with profit before taxation of £1,717 million.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York. For more information, visit www.bt.com/aboutbt

 

For further information regarding BT London Live please contact:

Ali Castriotis at LD Communications, E: [email protected] or

Kate Etteridge at LD Communications, E: [email protected]

T: 0207 439 7222

Please send all accreditation requests to, E: [email protected]

For other information, please contact:

Ben McKnight at the Greater London Authority, E: [email protected] T: 020 7983 4071

Katy Murray at The Royal Parks, E: [email protected] T: 0300 061 2146

Shalina Hussain at Tower Hamlets, E: [email protected] T: 020 7364 4754

BT Group Newsroom, T: 020 7356 5369. From outside the UK dial +44 20 7356 5369