80s Classical: Icons Return to Leeds for Open-Air Symphonic Spectacular!

80s Classical

80s icons Jimmy Somerville, Nik Kershaw, Go West, Carol Decker and Yorkshire’s very own John Parr will be taking centre stage in front of a live audience once again at the rescheduled 80s Classical at Leeds Millennium Square on Friday 10 September 2021.

After a joyous reception for the sold-out world premiere of the concert back in 2019, there were two postponements due to COVID. But now, the 60-piece Orchestra of Opera North returns to the outdoor venue in the heart of Leeds for another spectacular symphonic reboot of the chart-topping sounds of this momentous decade. Joined in person by the original artists.

Jimmy-Somerville-80s Classical

“It is going to be truly special”

After wowing the crowds in 2019, Jimmy Somerville returns. He’ll be performing some of his most iconic songs, including ‘Never Can Say Goodbye’, ‘Don’t Leave Me This Way’ and ‘Smalltown Boy’. “The first 80s Classical was such a memorable evening. And after everything that we have all been through over the past two years I can’t wait to perform to a packed live audience in Millennium Square once again. It is going to be truly special”, says Jimmy.

Also returning from the 2019 edition to perform pure 80s gold is synth-pop superstar Nik Kershaw. His hits include ‘Wouldn’t It Be Good’ and ‘I Won’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me’. T’Pau singer and songwriter Carol Decker with her classics ‘Heart and Soul’ and ‘China In Your Hand’ is on the bill too.

New to the 80s Classical family and performing with a live Orchestra for the very first time are Go West. They’re Brit Award-winners made up of lead vocalist Peter Cox and rhythm guitarist and backup vocalist Richard Drummie. They’ll be performing their hit single from the Pretty Woman soundtrack ‘King of Wishful Thinking’, together with other top ten smash hits including ‘We Close Our Eyes’.

Nik Kershaw 80s Classical

“Talented ensemble”

Yorkshire’s ‘Man in Motion’ John Parr will be performing his worldwide hit ‘St Elmo’s Fire’. And completing the line-up is a talented ensemble of backing vocalists, Bianca Claxton, Gavin Condor and Adetoun Anibi.  They’ll perform an array of crowd-pleasing 80s favourites including ‘Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’’ and Toto’s ”Africa’. Liverpool-based club and 80s event specialist DJs Sonic Yootha will also help get the party started in the lead up to the main performances. They’ll also be keeping the crowd entertained during the interval.

The masterminds behind 80s Classical are composer and arranger Cliff Masterson and Musical Director Steve Anderson. Their credits include Kylie Minogue, Emeli Sandé and Leona Lewis. “We’re absolutely thrilled to be back at Millennium Square for a second instalment of 80s Classical after what seems like a lifetime ago now” says Cliff.

Go-West-80s Classical

“Pop icons”

Phil Boughton is Director of Orchestra and Chorus, Opera North. He said: “Building on the success of our previous Millennium Square events, the first 80s Classical reached new heights. The atmosphere created by over 4,500 people – not to mention the talent and charisma of the pop icons who took the stage with us – made it one of the highlights of our year. After such a difficult year for us all we are thrilled, finally, to be returning to Millennium Square.”

Doors for the event on Friday 10 September will open from 6.30pm. DJs start from 6.45pm, and the main performances from 8.15pm. A licensed bar and several street food catering concessions will be available within the specially created outdoor arena. The venue is also fully accessible with a raised viewing platform, disabled toilets and a Changing Places unit.

Tickets are priced at £33 (standing) or £39.50 for reserved seating (limited numbers). They’re available now at www.millsqleeds.com, by calling (0113 376 0318). You can also buy them in person from the City Centre Box Office in Leeds Town Hall.


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