This year, Glastonbury 2020 would have been the 50th anniversary of the iconic festival.
The festival, organised by Michael Eavis and his daughter Emily Eavis has been held at Worthy Farm in Somerset since it began in 1970, when Eavis opened his farm for the first time to over a thousand people. It's grown a lot since then. From Thursday 25 to Monday 29 June over 200,000 people were set to gather at the farm, before this year's festival was cancelled.
While the festival itself is cancelled — as all are this summer — the BBC is broadcasting The Glastonbury Experience across TV, Radio, Sounds app and iPlayer, to celebrate the festival and bring it to life for those of us at home.
Lorna Clarke, Controller, BBC Pop, said in a press release: “Glastonbury Festival has for decades been a huge moment in the BBC’s music calendar. Even though Worthy Farm can’t be full of thousands of music lovers this year, the BBC will celebrate with four days of memories and archive footage across TV, BBC iPlayer, radio and BBC Sounds, to give our audience a taste of the festival in their own homes.”
While it's certainly different from the usual spectacle, the BBC's impressive efforts have full support and collaboration from the festival organisers.
Emily Eavis said in the release: “There are so many memorable sets being played across the BBC over what would have been our 50th anniversary weekend. Personally, I’m looking forward to a weekend of reflecting on the history of our festival and going back to some classic performances from David Bowie, Adele, REM, Beyoncé, The Rolling Stones, Jay-Z, Billie Eilish and lots more. Me and my dad will definitely be watching!”
You can really get into the spirit at home too, and that may mean tents, wristbands and decorations to create a festival feel. The BBC wants you to share on social media the ways you're bringing the festival home using the hashtag #Glastonbury2020, and will then share these photos and videos on their channels.
Glastonbury 2020: What's on TV?
Presenters including Clara Amfo, Edith Bowman, Jo Whiley, Lauren Laverne and Mark Radcliffe will host four days of programming across BBC Two, BBC Four and BBC iPlayer. There will be documentaries, special programmes and classic Glastonbury performances from some of the biggest artists in the history of the festival shown in full, including Adele (2016), Beyoncé (2011), David Bowie (2000),and Coldplay (2016).
Glastonbury 2020: TV highlights
- Friday 26, Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 June, each night of the main festival weekend, there will be a 90-minute programme on BBC Two at 8.30pm. The programmes will celebrate some of the festival’s greatest performances since BBC coverage began in the 90s, with the BBC promising unique acoustic performances and rarely seen archive moments. Artists featured include Amy Winehouse (2007), and The Rolling Stones (2013).
- On Thursday 25 June on BBC Four, Edith Bowman will introduce a broadcast of Julien Temple’s acclaimed film Glastonbury, which the release says : "Celebrates and documents the history of this famous festival. Concert footage, interviews, archive and home video collected from attendees themselves combine in this film to capture the essence of Glastonbury. "
- Blue Peter joins The Glastonbury Experience on CBBC Thursday 25 June at 5.30, with children performing, dancing, and creating their very own music festivals to earn a Blue Peter Music badge, designed by Ed Sheeran.
The amazing #BluePeter Music badge has launched! Designed by #EdSheeran, this badge is made to inspire young people to have a go, explore and share the magic of music. 💙🎹🎧🎼— CBBC (@cbbc) September 26, 2019
Find out more 👉 https://t.co/x8QbHjfxMV#BBCMusicDay pic.twitter.com/M4HLhDXVFo
Glastonbury 2020: What's on iPlayer?
BBC iPlayer is the new home to an entire pop-up BBC Glastonbury channel, bringing viewers back-to-back iconic sets and highlights from throughout the festival's history.
iPlayer will also host all the TV coverage, live and as catch up, plus over sixty historic sets available to watch on demand.
From 10am on Thursday 25 June until late Monday 29 June, fans will have access to highlights and hidden gems from the BBC’s TV coverage and acoustic sessions.
Glastonbury 2020: iPlayer highlights
- Specially commissioned film, The Best of BBC Music Introducing at Glastonbury, is available from Monday 22 June. Voiced by BBC Radio 1’s Huw Stephens and Introducing’s Jaguar the programme promises to "explore and remember some of the major names that have played the BBC Music Introducing Stage early on in their careers."
- Historic Glastonbury sets on-demand on iPlayer, including: George Ezra (2019), The Killers (2004), Lewis Capaldi (2019), Radiohead (1997), Foals (2019), The XX (2017), Lana Del Rey (2014), Primal Scream (2011), Christine & The Queens (2016), The Chemical Brothers (2019) and Billie Eilish (2019).
The Trailer for Julien Temple's iconic documentary. Watch on Thursday 25 June on BBC Four and then on iPlayer.
Glastonbury 2020: What's on BBC Radio?
Across the BBC's radio stations expect a long weekend full of archived tracks, live sets, memories and interview with Glastonbury artists past and present.
- A series of special shows from Jo Whiley will be made up of of Jo’s memories of Worthy Farm, as well of those of her fellow Radio 2 presenters and listeners, and are being aired on BBC Radio 2 from 22 June.
- Sunday 28 June, BBC Radio 6 Music will be all about emerging artists who would have played at Glastonbury in 2020 in a special episode of The BBC Music Introducing Mixtape (2-3pm).
- BBC Radio Somerset is broadcasting three special shows on the Friday 26, Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 June (6-10pm), highlighting the impact the festival has had on the county over its 50 year history.
- On Sunday afternoon, Sounds Of The 70s With Johnnie Walker will reflect on the Glastonbury performances from that decade.
Glastonbury 2020: What's on the BBC Sounds App?
All live radio programmes will be available to listen to on the BBC Sounds App,
The app will be filled with audio highlights from radio coverage across the week, over 20 archive performances and All Day Glastonbury curated collections of back-to-back sets from over the years. Plus surprise mixes from DJs who would have performed in 2020.
FULL SCHEDULE Local media Somerset Live have combined a handy full TV and Radio listings for the weekend.
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