Duran Duran officiates the opening of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham

British music icon Duran Duran will lead the opening ceremony of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

Returning to the city where her four-decade career began, Duran Duran will form the finale of the ceremony’s concert. City’s multiple Grammy Award-winner Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath and saxophonist Soweto Kinch will direct the dream sequence “Hear My Voice,” based on the title track of the 2020 film The Trial of the Chicago Seven, which reinterpreted by Birmingham-born RnB singers Indigo Marshall and Gambimi. The event is musically directed by rapper, artist and educator Joshua “RTKal” Holness, and the opening ceremony’s artistic director is theater producer Iqbal Khan.

At the ceremony, Samantha Oxborough, a Birmingham Conservatoire graduate and mezzo-soprano, will perform the UK national anthem, supported by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra conducted by Alpesh Chauhan, while musicians from The Royal Marines will provide, as part of the official opening of the Games a trumpet fanfare. A mass choir of over 700 voices, including 15 choirs from the West Midlands, will flood the arena, led by Carol Pemberton and Black Voices, one of Europe’s leading female a cappella groups. Other musicians performing include Grammy winner Lekan Babalola, singer Ranjana Ghatak, shawm player Jude Rees, bagpiper Chris Crouch and djembe player Abraham Paddy Tetteh.

Duran Duran’s Simon Le Bon said: “The 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham is a momentous event for the great city of Birmingham. And we at Duran Duran are honored to be a part of that in our hometown.”

Roger Taylor said: “We are so proud to return to our hometown to wrap up the Opening Ceremony of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. It is a true honor to be part of a global event that will bring together athletes from all cultural backgrounds around the world. Another milestone in what has been an incredible year for us.”

John Taylor added: “It’s so good to be attending the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games this year and performing with the CBSO for the first time. It will also be exciting to be around some of the world’s best athletes in hopes of getting some fitness advice.”

Khan said: “It’s this city’s music that really gives it its voice and this stunning line-up will reach global audiences as we celebrate the best of Birmingham creativity on an international stage.”

The games will take place from July 28th to August 8th. 8. The Opening and Closing Ceremonies will take place at the redesigned Alexander Stadium in Birmingham before a live audience of over 30,000.

https://variety.com/2022/music/global/duran-duran-commonwealth-games-birmingham-1235320858/ Duran Duran officiates the opening of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham

Charles Jones

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