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UK cricket stadia to host concerts this summer

Cricket venues in England and Wales will become outdoor concert venues this summer as part of a new partnership between a new cricket competition, The Hundred, and the BBC’s emerging-music platform, BBC Music Introducing.

The Hundred, which kicks off in July, is a cricket tournament which aims to attract younger and more diverse crowds to cricket, its ‘100-ball’ format ensuring that each match will last less than three hours. It will feature eight men’s and women’s teams from London, Manchester, Leeds, Nottingham, Cardiff and Hampshire.

The tie-up with BBC Music Introducing will see artists including Jerub, Lady Sanity, Oscar Welsh, the Orielles, Coach Party and Rachel K. Collier performing at their respective local cricket grounds, with the shows (along with the match) broadcast on the BBC and Sky TV.

Lady Sanity, who will perform at Edgbaston Stadium (25,000-cap.) at Birmingham Phoenix game, says: “I’m excited to finally be on a stage, especially in Birmingham. I can’t wait to perform at The Hundred and get back to live audiences.”

“It’s been far too long since we were last on stage together,” collectively add the Orielles, who will play a Manchester Originals home match at Emirates Old Trafford (26,000-cap.). “We can’t wait to hit the stage at Emirates Old Trafford and watch Manchester Originals smash it all summer.”

In addition to the live performances at matches, a local BBC Music Introducing DJ will be associated each of the eight new teams, tasked with curating a soundtrack which reflects their city and the people, artists and sportsmen and women in it. “From walk-out music to game reaction sounds, the venue DJs are in full control of the sound of their team,” explains a Hundred spokesperson.

“We are curating a real festival line-up to deliver a groundbreaking music programme”

Jess Iszatt, the DJ for London Spirit, says: This time just over a year ago, I was already looking forward to being a part of The Hundred, but it is safe to say I am even more buzzing to be a part of a huge major event coming back this summer, like coming out of a cold dark winter hibernation. We all know that both sport and music are key in helping maintain mental and physical wellbeing, and during the pandemic both the sporting and music world have been halted.

“I can’t wait to be playing great new music that I have discovered over the past year while cheering on London Spirit.”

Sanjay Patel, The Hundred managing director, comments: “In collaboration with BBC Music Introducing, we are curating a real festival line-up to deliver a groundbreaking music programme that is integrated into a world-class sporting event, unlike anything that has been delivered before.

“Each of the acts, DJs and hosts we’ve announced embody the spirit of The Hundred in their own way and they’ll be bringing the energy all summer long. With fast-paced cricket on the pitch and live music performances off it, we’re delivering on our promise to provide entertainment for the whole family.”

Adult tickets for Hundred games start at £10, while under-16s will pay £5 and under-fives go free.

The Hundred matches and live performances announced so far are:

Fri 23 July: Birmingham Phoenix vs London Spirit, Edgbaston, Birmingham – Lady Sanity
Mon 26 July: Trent Rockets vs Northern Superchargers, Trent Bridge, Nottingham – Jerub
Weds 28 July: Manchester Originals vs Northern Superchargers, Emirates Old Trafford, Manchester – The Orielles
Mon 2 Aug: Oval Invincibles vs Welsh Fire, Kia Oval, London – Oscar Welsh
Mon 16 Aug: Southern Brave vs Oval Invincibles, Ageas Bowl, Southampton – Coach Party
Weds 18 Aug: Welsh Fire vs London Spirit, Sophia Gardens, Cardiff – Rachel K Collier


This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.

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Grande, Bieber, Coldplay for LN Manchester benefit

Ariana Grande will return to Manchester this Sunday (4 June), headlining a star-studded benefit in aid of the families of the victims of last Monday’s bombing.

One Love Manchester, underwritten by Live Nation and produced by Festival Republic in association with SJM Concerts, will take place at the Emirates Old Trafford Cricket Ground (50,000-cap.) and feature performances by Grande, Justin Bieber, Coldplay, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, Pharrell Williams, Usher, Take That and 1D’s Niall Horan.

Tickets will go on sale through Ticketmaster at 10am on Thursday 1 June, while those who attended Grande’s tragic show at Manchester Arena on 22 May can register to attend for free.

All net proceeds for the show, which will be broadcast on BBC TV and radio and Capital radio, will be donated to the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund.

“We will not quit or operate in fear. We won’t let this divide us”

In an open letter to fans, Grande (pictured) – who postponed her Dangerous Woman tour in the wake of the Manchester Arena attack – says: “My heart, prayers and condolences are with the victims of the Manchester Attack and their loved ones. There is nothing I or anyone can do to take away the pain you are feeling or to make this better. However, I extend my hand and heart and everything I possibly can give to you and yours, should you want or need my help in any way.

“We will not quit or operate in fear. We won’t let this divide us. We won’t let hate win… Our response to this violence must be to come closer together, to help each other, to love more, to sing louder and to live more kindly and generously than we did before.

“Music is meant to heal us, to bring us together, to make us happy. So that is what it will continue to do for us. We will continue to honour the ones we lost, their loved ones, my fans and all affected by this tragedy. They will be on my mind and in my heart every day, and I will think of them with everything I do for the rest of my life.”


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Manchester turns Anti-Rihanna at Old Trafford gig

Rihanna’s Anti world tour rolled into Manchester on Wednesday evening, and while the crowd at the 26,000-capacity Old Trafford cricket ground welcomed the Barbadian singer (pictured) and guest star Drake with open arms – especially those she sent pizza to – other Mancunians weren’t quite so appreciative.

Residents, many living miles from the stadium, vented on Twitter that they could hear the concert clearly  from their living rooms (Karl Bonsworth wrote: “I’m about 10 miles away and can hear the bass from here! That is SOME sound system! #TurnitdownabitRihanna), and one – Jeannette Davidson, who lives in Failsworth, around eight miles away – phoned the Manchester Evening News to complain, telling the paper: “The noise is ridiculous. We are miles away and can still hear the whole thing. The windows are closed, too, and it’s still coming through into the house.

“I’m shocked that it’s this loud so far away. I feel sorry for the people who live right by it. They got a free concert whether they wanted one or not.”

“Noise levels were compliant with the acceptable levels as laid out in the licence provided by the council”

Despite this, a joint statement from the venue and Trafford council said the actual number of complaints was “small in number” and that “noise levels were compliant with the acceptable levels as laid out in the licence provided by the council to allow the concert to go ahead”.

A spokesman for Lancashire County Cricket Club (LCCC), which operates the ground, Lancashire County Cricket Club, adds that the sound may have travelled “due to atmospheric conditions”, but “we do try to mitigate that this as much as possible”.

LCCC communications manager Paul Holliday, who sent the statement to IQ, declined to comment on whether the venue would be implementing any measures to avoid similar sound leakage in future.


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