Years & Years have today launched a brand new project, ‘Rendezvous’, which will be introduced at the band’s forthcoming headline London show at the O2 Arena on December 5th.
‘Rendezvous’ was conceived by Olly Alexander as a project – and, in the future, a festival –designed to create “a project to celebrate LGBTQ+ voices and provide a space that’s respectful, inclusive and inspiring for everybody. A chance to shine a light on the incredible talent from within our community and our allies.”
Listening to my LGBTQ+ peers has been my most powerful teacher, and I am lucky I’ve been able to meet so many like-minded people, but I know that isn’t always easy to find.
“My hope is that the launch of ‘Rendezvous’ will encourage people to make new connections, new ideas, make friends, be inspired and have a lot of fun!”
Years & Years’ headline show at London’s O2 Arena will be the first taste of what to expect from ‘Rendezvous’. The band have today confirmed a line up featuring friends and allies from the community; joining Hotly tipped Norwegian popstar Astrid S is ‘pop futurist’ Rina Sawayama, Voguer Jay Jay Revlon with The Kiki House of Tea, and LGBT inclusive choir Urban Voices Collective.
Off the stage at all venues, the Terrance Higgins charity will be manning stands, staffed with outreach workers, where attendees can receive condoms and other sexual health materials. Bathrooms at the venue will have gender-neutral options.
The whole evening will be compered by model and activist Munroe Bergdorf, who said of the event: “Not only am I a huge Years & Years fan, but I love Olly and the band’s continued message of love and inclusivity. I can’t wait to be part of this fantastic event and celebrate on stage with everyone at The O2!”
Commenting further on future plans for ‘Rendezvous’, Olly Alexander writes: “I’m asking myself how can we uplift members of the LGBTQ+ community? Is there a way to share our platform and the opportunities we’ve been given with our fans, other Artists and human beings in the world?”
How can we empower marginalised voices and build bridges with a wider audience, straight, queer and everything in between.
“We’ve played in countries where it’s not okay (or even legal) to be openly gay or queer and those crowds are some of the loudest, most ferociously joyous, we play to. Not all of the audience is gay, but everybody- including us on stage – feel the power of coming together in mutual support and celebration. And dancing.
“The status quo is changing – for the better. Even so we’re used to festival lineups being dominated by mostly male acts, with female acts sidelined along with LGBTQ+ artists. This gets more complicated with artists who live at the intersection of race and sexuality, or artists who don’t fit a gender binary. We believe that these artists deserve to be seen and heard and that audiences deserve to see and hear them too. I’m really excited to launch ‘Rendezvous’ at our show in London next month where we’ll be giving people a taste of where we hope to take the project in 2019.”
Years & Years – UK Headline Tour
28/11 The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
29/11 O2 Apollo, Manchester SOLD OUT
30/11 Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham
02/12 O2 Apollo, Manchester SOLD OUT
04/12 Brighton Centre, Brighton SOLD OUT
05/12 The O2 Arena, London