Damon Albarn in the Running to Direct Olympics Opening Ceremony | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
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Damon Albarn of Blur and Gorillaz

Damon Albarn in the Running to Direct Olympics Opening Ceremony

Blur/Gorillaz Frontman in Consideration for 2012 London Games

Sep 24, 2009 Photography by Wendy Lynch Redfern Bookmark and Share

Damon Albarn, he of Blur and Gorillaz, is in the running to be the artistic director for the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony, according to the British newspaper The Independent. Albarn has had preliminary discussions with the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Locog). He is one of several people in the running for job. Oscar-nominated film director Stephen Daldry (The Reader, Billy Elliot) is also a strong contender for the position. Locog has also considered having four different artistic directors for the opening and closing ceremonies of both the Olympics and Paralympic Games. It could take up to six months for an artist director or artist directors to be chosen.

Albarn's Blur was one of the leaders of the mid '90s Britpop movement and Albarn was born in the east London area where the games are being held, which is why he is considered a viable choice to director an opening ceremonies that would show off British culture. He and his Gorillaz partner, artist Jamie Hewlett, created music and animation for the BBC's TV coverage of the 2008 Beijing Games. Albarn is no stranger to staged shows, having co-created with Hewlett and Chinese actor/director Chen Shi-zheng the 2007 opera Monkey: Journey to the West.

The chief executive of Locog, Paul Deighton, warns that they won't have the budget to pull off the kind of spectacular opening ceremonies that China did. "I doubt we will have 20,000 people doing things in unison in our opening ceremony. That's just fine. That's the beauty of the contrast," he told The Independent.

(Via NME)


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