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Back to basics (and the ‘80s) for Rewind

14 February 2020

AS PART of the management team which has assumed control of ‘80s-themed festival brand Rewind from radio group Global, the event’s founder says it is being taken “back to its roots”.

Rewind was the last festival asset that Global, whose radio stations include Capital, LBC and Classic FM, divested after it decided to abandon its multi-million-pound bid to be a major festival owner. (see LIVE UK issue 236),

Global had acquired Rewind in October 2016 from David Heartfield’s Impresario Festivals for an undisclosed sum, with Heartfield now working with LN-Gaiety, the Live Nation Entertainment (LNE) joint venue with Irish live music entrepreneur and LNE non-executive chairman Denis Desmond and wife Caroline, and SJM Concerts.

“We are reversing a number of changes that were introduced by Global, and that has a lot to do with the line-up, because it had drifted away from the core focus with lots of non-‘80s acts having been involved,” says Heartfield.

This year’s Rewind festival line-up is headed by Jimmy Somerville’s Big Band-Tastic Boogie – an exclusive show created for the festivals.

Launched in 2009 as the ‘80s Rewind Festival, focused on artistes who enjoyed their heyday in that decade, comprises Rewind South (cap, 40,000) in Henley-on-Thames, Rewind North (20,000) in Cheshire, and Rewind Scotland (30,000) in Perthshire.

Heartfield says other changes will include a 4,000-capacity big top hosting evening venue called Club Tropicana.

Other acts to playing Rewind include Wet Wet Wet, Billy Ocean, Bananarama, Trevor Horn Band, Nick Heyward, Roland Gift, Hue And Cry and Grandmaster Flash. Weekend camping tickets for the July-August events cost £140.

Global sold these, and other festivals, just two years after spending what is believed to have been £90 million to acquire a portfolio of festivals that made it the second largest festival operator in the country.

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