Just For One Day - Live Aid, one of the most famous concerts of all time, is to become a stage musical in London next year. The original event, at Wembley Stadium on 13 July 1985, was organised by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia. The musical, called Just For One Day, will feature songs played that day by acts including Queen, U2, Sir Elton John, Sir Paul McCartney and Sting. It will be on at London's Old Vic Theatre from 26 January to 30 March.
One thing that Geldof wants to make very clear is that there will not be anyone pretending to be the singers. "This isn't a tribute thing. I wouldn't have anything to do with that. So, there isn't a person dressed up as Freddie wearing a crap moustache. The songs drive the drama along," he says.
The plot of Just For One Day, named after a line in David Bowie's Heroes, will balance a behind-the-scenes look at how Band Aid and Live Aid came together, with a love story inspired by real events. "The story is based on actual testimony from the day," explains Geldof. "It's real people telling their story throughout this. So it's complex theatre." The musical is being made with the full permission of the Band Aid Charitable Trust, which will receive 10% of every ticket sale.
Price Hike - Ticket prices for Glastonbury Festival next year will rise to £360. It is a £20 increase from this year's event, which cost £335 plus a £5 booking fee - and a £75 hike from the price in 2022. Fans will be able to buy ticket and coach travel packages on 2 November, and standard tickets on 5 November.
Glastonbury co-organiser Emily Eavis made the pricing announcement on social media and said people would need to register in advance on the festival's website. Despite a price increase of £70 between 2019, when tickets were sold for the 2020 concert, and last year, tickets for the 2023 event sold out in 61 minutes.
Budget Cuts - The Scottish government has reimposed a £6.6m budget cut on arts body Creative Scotland. The cut had been reversed earlier this year after a campaign by the Scottish arts sector, but was reintroduced a week ago in the autumn budget. Creative Scotland will use National Lottery funding reserves to plug the gap, but said the moment was a "tipping point" for an already fragile sector.
The Scottish government said the funding would resume next year. Speaking at Holyrood on Thursday, Creative Scotland CEO Ian Munro said: "Reimposing this cut, just two weeks before regularly funded organisations were due to receive their quarterly payments would amount to a forty per cent reduction. It's enormous in terms of an already fragile sector. This would have been a tipping point."
Heavy Metal Ballet - A ballet built around the music of Birmingham heavy metal superstars Black Sabbath is attracting new audiences, according to producers. Birmingham Royal Ballet says more than 60% of tickets in Birmingham for Black Sabbath - The Ballet were sold to people who have never attended a ballet before.
The show’s opening night saw Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi joined by singer Ozzy Osbourne's wife Sharon, fellow band member Geezer Butler and Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant. Following its Birmingham run, the show will move to Plymouth Theatre Royal from 12-14 October and London’s Sadler’s Wells from 18-21 October.
Grand News - Blackpool Grand Theatre has been given listed building consent for £500,000 of repairs to secure the future of the venue. Plans were previously submitted by owner Blackpool Grand Theatre Trust to Blackpool Council, which mainly focus on the building’s dome after a survey found this to be in “poor condition”.
The survey also found the venue’s work surrounding the base to be “cracked beneath a rainwater downpipe” and the timber access hatch was “allowing water to ingress” due to its condition. The trust explained that securing relevant permissions and the development of architectural plans to RIBA Stage 3 were “foundational aspects of many major grant applications”. It added that remedial works to the roof and west wall were also needed. Repairs will be undertaken in spring next year so as not to affect the theatre’s performances.
(Jim Evans)
3 October 2023

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