Inside Silverstone’s new era of live music
Silverstone director of music Jamie Scott has spoken to IQ about launching a new era of live music at the famous racetrack for next month’s Formula 1 Aramco British Grand Prix.
Scott, who was appointed to the role last year, has curated four nights of live music and entertainment for the iconic motor racing circuit, starting with a Best of British launch party headed by Calvin Harris, Jess Glynne and Cat Burns on 6 July.
The weekend slots will then be headlined by Jax Jones (7 July) and Black Eyed Peas (8 July), with Tom Grennan closing proceedings following the Grand Prix on 9 July.
Grammy-nominated and Ivor Novello Award-winning songwriter and producer Scott recruited Library Productions, which manages Glastonbury’s Pyramid Stage, to create bespoke staging for the expanded music arena, which now accommodates up to 45,000 people.
“The whole music area has been redeveloped and the capacity doubled to 45,000, which shows huge intent,” Scott tells IQ. “The idea is to put the music on an equal par with the racing and get great British talent on there. So, you won’t just be coming to watch the race, you’re going to be coming for days of entertainment. Hopefully we get a great race and people feel on the Sunday that they’ve been to an all-encompassing four days.
“The British Grand Prix is steeped in heritage – we’ve got three British racing drivers in the top 10 in the world – so it’s a huge time in British motorsport and we wanted to equal that with the music. Like every world sport now, Formula 1 is all about entertainment and the experience; it is on the tip of everyone’s tongue because of what it means to people, and it is now connecting with a younger demographic [via Netflix series] Drive to Survive, and this feels like a great way to start.”
“Silverstone has massive intentions of being a 365 day-a-year leisure venue for great entertainment”
The live music offering will be provided at no extra cost to existing ticket holders.
“There is a lot of synergy between the British music industry and British motorsport, it just needed to be brought together,” suggests Scott. “We want to make Silverstone a place that global artists want to come and play. It has its own unique aura; it’s a beautiful place and it’s just about trying to elevate that and and lift the offerings for years to come.”
Live music has become a key part of the festivities at F1’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix weekend, which celebrates its 15th edition in November with Yasalam After-Race Concerts headlined by Foo Fighters, Tiësto and Ava Max at Yas Island.
Elsewhere, last year’s inaugural Miami Grand Prix brought acts such as Post Malone, Maluma and The Chainsmokers to Miami Gardens, while the 2023 Las Vegas edition in November has concerts by the likes of J Balvin, Major Lazer and Mark Ronson at the T-Mobile Zone at Sphere. Formula 1 was acquired by Live Nation shareholder Liberty Media in 2017.
“I think the inspiration and the intent has come from Formula 1 being under new ownership,” says Scott. “Clearly, the entertainment value is is an important aspect now with other races like Miami and Las Vegas. Silverstone obviously hosts the Formula 1, but it’s also got MotoGP and the Silverstone Classic and we want to enhance it again next year. It has massive intentions of being a 365 day-a-year leisure venue for great entertainment.”
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