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80s Classical is back for 2020

After this summer’s world premiere performance, the Orchestra of Opera North will return to Millennium Square on Friday 24 July 2020 for the second instalment of 80s Classical, joined by pop legends Jimmy Somerville, Belinda Carlisle, Go West and T’Pau’s Carol Decker.

A highlight of the debut line-up, founder and lead vocalist of Bronski Beat and The Communards Jimmy Somerville will be back to perform electrifying, orchestrally-enhanced versions of some of his most iconic songs, including Never Can Say Goodbye, Don’t Leave Me This Way and Smalltown Boy. “I’m so excited to be returning to Leeds and to be collaborating once again with the wonderful Orchestra of Opera North on these truly unique orchestral arrangements of my catalogue”, says Jimmy. “Last year was such a memorable evening and I can’t wait to perform in Millennium Square again”.

Having begun her career in the most successful all-female band in history, The Go-Go’s, Belinda Carlisle went on to score international solo hits including Heaven is a Place on Earth, Circle in the Sand and Leave a Light On. The American superstar singer, musician and author joins the bill to perform orchestrated versions of her songs for the very first time. “I am absolutely thrilled to be able to perform some of my best loved songs in front of a 60-piece symphony orchestra and to be involved in such a fresh and exciting event”, she says. “I always get a great reaction from my fans in the UK and I know this is going to be a really special occasion”.

To anyone of a certain age, the sound of Go West’s King of Wishful Thinking will bring visions of Richard Gere speeding through the Hollywood Hills in Pretty Woman. The Brit Award-winning duo, made up of lead vocalist Peter Cox and rhythm guitarist and backup vocalist Richard Drummie, were paid the ultimate accolade when a shot-for-shot remake of the song’s video by Paul Rudd and The Tonight Show’s Jimmy Fallon went viral last year. Peter and Richard will take the stage to perform King of Wishful Thinking and more earworms including top ten smash We Close Our Eyes.

After her outstanding performance at last year’s concert, T’Pau singer and songwriter Carol Decker returns with pure 80s pop gold Heart and Soul and China In Your Hand.

An ensemble of backing vocalists will perform a crowd-pleasing selection of 80s favourites including Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’, Toto’s Africa and The Jacksons’ Can You Feel it, among many more.

Tickets for the event, priced at £33 (standing) or £39.50 for reserved seating (limited number), go on sale at 10am on Friday 6 December. Watch this space for further announcements about next year’s Opera North in the City weekend, part of Leeds City Council’s Summer Series programme in Millennium Square.

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