Glastonbury Music Festival Kicks off With Kaiser Chiefs

7:16 AM PST 06/27/2014 by Georg Szalai
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The Rolling Stones rocked Glastonbury in 2013.

The U.K. event, the world's largest greenfield music festival, is expected to draw 175,000 people, with two deaths reported so far and the BBC apologizing for a weather alert that caused viewer dismay.

LONDON – British music festival Glastonbury kicked off Friday with a morning performance by the Kaiser Chiefs.

The festival, considered the world's largest greenfield music festival, is expected to draw around 175,000 people, with the BBC offering more than 250 hours of TV, radio and digital coverage.

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The Kaiser Chiefs were a surprise opening act on the fest's "Other Stage" Friday. They are set to headline another stage Friday night.

"Glastonbury sing along if you know the words," said frontman Ricky Wilson, a coach on the BBC's The Voice UK, as he started "Every Day I Love You Less and Less," according to a BBC report. "If you don't, sing along anyway."

Other acts on Friday's lineup include Disclosure, Blondie, Lily Allen, Paolo Nutini and headliners Arcade Fire. The band will play the main Pyramid Stage, with EDM star Skrillex headlining another stage.

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On Saturday, Metallica will be the headline performers, with Kasabian playing the headline spot on Sunday. Other performers include Dolly Parton,‎ ‎Massive Attack, Lana Del Rey, De La Soul, Kelis, Rudimental, The Pixies, Richie Hawtin, Goldfrapp, Bonobo, Interpol and Suzanne Vega.

The weather forecast calls for rain during the festival, with TV footage showing ‎thousands of fans wearing rain ponchos. Glastonbury takes place in Somerset, England, on Worthy Farm.

The BBC had to apologize for a TV weather forecast after the 10 p.m. news this week ahead of the festival that had featured an erroneous subtitle, drawing viewer criticism online. It said that Glastonbury attendees should "prepare for rape" instead of "prepare for rain."

Meanwhile, two people have died on the festival site since it opened its gates earlier in the week, according to U.K. media reports.

A 26-year-old man died from what the BBC said was a suspected reaction to illegal drug ketamine, according to a BBC report Friday. It also said that on Wednesday, a 67-year-old woman died in her sleep on the site from what were believed to be natural causes.

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The BBC said it "will once again be bringing audiences more of the music they love from over 100 acts - delivering the biggest, broadest and best moments from Worthy Farm."

Bob Shennan, controller of BBC Radio 2 and director, BBC Music, said: "Glastonbury is one of the world's most famous music festivals, and once again the BBC will be providing audiences with a magical weekend of coverage, in a way that only the BBC can."

Headliners in 2013 included The Rolling Stones, The Arctic Monkeys‎ and Mumford & Sons.

Glastonbury in South West England has a population of about 9,000. The festival actually takes place in nearby Pilton, which has less than 1,000 inhabitants.

E-mail: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai








 

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