Glastonbury headliner Philip Glass to pay tribute to David Bowie

David Bowie will be celebrated at Glastonbury with the festival's first ever classical music headliner.

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David Bowie performing at Glastonbury Festival in 2000. Picture: PADavid Bowie performing at Glastonbury Festival in 2000. Picture: PA
David Bowie performing at Glastonbury Festival in 2000. Picture: PA

American composer Philip Glass’s Heroes Symphony, written in 1996 in homage to Bowie’s 1977 album Heroes, will be brought to life with an immersive laser performance by Chris Levine on the Park Stage on June 25.

Starting just before midnight, Charles Hazlewood will direct a classical orchestra featuring Army of Generals and members of the British Paraorchestra for “a 45-minute symphonic meditation” inspired by Bowie’s album.

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Festival organiser Emily Eavis said: “We are delighted that David Bowie’s life will be celebrated by Glastonbury’s first ever classical music headliner.

“Bowie’s performance of Heroes in his 2000 Pyramid set was one of the all-time moments in our history and it just feels so right that we will relive it again on Saturday night through the brilliance of Philip Glass’s symphony.”

Award-winning British conductor Hazlewood added: “If Bowie had any interest in what might be played by all of us after he’d gone, then I reckon a world class orchestra breathing fire into Glass’s Heroes Symphony would make him very happy indeed.

“And with the added genius of laser virtuoso Chris Levine creating a visual counterpoint to Glass’s luminescent textures, this will be the most extraordinary sound and vision ever witnessed at Glastonbury.”

The performance will be broadcast live on BBC Four.

• Philip Glass’s Heroes Symphony will play on The Park Stage on June 25 from 11.45pm to 0.30am. Glastonbury runs from June 22 to 26