ENTERTAINMENT
27/05/2020 11:07 BST | Updated 30/07/2020 11:40 BST

Glastonbury's 50th Anniversary Will Still Be Celebrated With Epic BBC Coverage, Despite Festival's Cancellation

Coronavirus put paid to the 2020 festival, with organisers calling off the milestone event in March.

You’re reading our series Summer’s Not Cancelled, where we celebrate summer in this new normal. From rediscovering nature and cherishing time with friends and family, to virtual festivals and unforgettable staycations – summer’s still here, it’s just different.

Glastonbury might have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, but there’s still lots of action from the festival to enjoy this summer. 

The BBC has unveiled plans to still celebrate Glastonbury’s 50th anniversary, with hours of dedicated programming reliving some of the iconic festival’s best moments and memorable performances.

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Beyoncé headlined the festival in 2011

The Glastonbury Experience will be broadcast from Thursday 25 June to Monday 29 June across the BBC’s TV channels, iPlayer, radio and BBC Sounds.

A number of recent stand-out headline sets – including Adele in 2016, Beyoncé in 2011, David Bowie in 2000, and Coldplay in 2016 – will air on BBC Two, BBC Four and iPlayer. 

Performances by Amy Winehouse, Arctic Monkeys, Blur, Dizzee Rascal, Lady Gaga, PJ Harvey and The Rolling Stones will also be featured.

In addition to this, there will be three live 90-minute programmes aired during prime time slots on BBC Two from the Friday to Sunday to mark what would have been the three headlining nights of this year’s event. 

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Adele played the Pyramid Stage in 2016

Meanwhile, there’ll be a new pop-up channel deciated to Glastonbury on the iPlayer, with more than 60 previous sets available, while the BBC Sounds app will have “All Day Glastonbury” curated collections of back-to-back sets, as well as the biggest moments from across BBC Radio.

Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis said: “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!” 

Paul McCartneyTaylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar had all been scheduled to headline at this year’s festival, while Glastonbury organisers had booked Diana Ross to perform in the “Legends” slot, following Kylie Minogue’s appearance last year.

Glastonbury was officially cancelled back in March, with ticket holders offered the option to roll their ticket over to 2021.