Press Release | 16 Jun 2022

Elton John and Vodafone to wow Hyde Park crowd with augmented reality concert dedicated to NHS and frontline workers

The AR experience will accompany one of Elton’s most iconic songs, I’m Still Standing, paying tribute to the resilience of NHS and other frontline workers throughout the pandemic.

  • Elton John and Vodafone announce incredible live augmented reality (AR) experience for fans, to be performed during the singer’s Farewell Yellow Brick Road performance at American Express presents BST Hyde Park on Friday 24 June.
  • The AR experience will accompany one of Elton’s most iconic songs, I’m Still Standing, with the performance paying tribute to the NHS and the UK’s frontline workers who showed so much resilience throughout the pandemic.
  • To say thank you, Vodafone and Elton John are running a prize draw to offer NHS workers the chance to win exclusive ticket access to the sold-out show. Fans can find out more and take part in the prize draw.
  • Vodafone joins American Express presents BST Hyde Park as Official Connectivity Partner and will use the latest technology to deliver the stunning AR experience for fans.

Vodafone and British icon Elton John will come together on Friday 24 June to deliver a unique augmented reality performance at BST Hyde Park. It will pay tribute to the NHS and frontline workers for their incredible efforts during the pandemic.

In a first for the festival and to celebrate the return of the highly anticipated London event – the first BST Hyde Park in three years – the performance will use cutting-edge AR technology to take Elton’s highly anticipated Farewell Yellow Brick Road show to the next level.

The performance will celebrate the resilience and selflessness of the NHS and frontline workers, without whom the return to live music would not have been possible. Tied to one of Elton’s most iconic songs, I’m Still Standing, the spectacular time-synced 3D imagery will tell an impactful story of their unrelenting support during the pandemic and the resilience of the nation.

The experience will bring the lyrics to life and take fans on a journey through Elton’s incredible career – reimagining the track’s famous music video and paying homage to other classic Elton iconography, including a miniature Elton brought to life through AR.

Fans just need to download the ‘Elton John X Vodafone’ app, then point their smartphone camera at the stage throughout the performance to enjoy the experience. They can also capture photos and videos of the moment to share with friends on social using the app. Fans can download the app from Monday 20 June on iOS and Android.

As a token of thanks, Vodafone and Elton John are running a prize draw to offer NHS workers the chance to win exclusive ticket access to the sold-out show. Fans can find out more and take part in the prize draw.

Vodafone 5G gives deaf and hard-of-hearing fans a first-of-its-kind live music experience

The wearable tech lets fans feel the music through vibrations, delivered by 24 touch-points around the suit, to provide a multi-sensory experience.

Max Taylor, Consumer Director at Vodafone UK, said: “We’re thanking NHS and frontline workers for their efforts over the last two years with a technology tribute to them that will come to life in Elton John’s iconic song, I’m Still Standing. We’re excited to be back at festivals this summer, helping music fans feel more connected to performances than ever before.”

Elton John said: “The return of live music is such a special moment for me – and I’m sure for many people and it’s so important that we take a moment to thank those who made it possible. I’m Still Standing is all about enduring the bad times and bouncing back even stronger, and I’m delighted to be able to dedicate this performance to all those people who have helped us do that as a nation.”

I’ve always looked to push the boundaries through my performances, and I’m so excited to be working with Vodafone to take things to the next level once again.

The AR performance is part of Vodafone’s wider commitment to use its technology and connectivity to enhance festival experiences for music fans this summer.

Fans can download the experience for free on the ‘Elton John X Vodafone: #FeelTheConnection in AR’ mobile app, on iOS and Android, from Monday 20 June.

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Notes to Editors

The ‘Elton John X Vodafone presents #FeelTheConnection’ in AR mobile app requires an iPhone 8, Samsung Galaxy S10 or equivalent device to operate.

About American Express presents BST Hyde Park:

Set in London’s beautiful Royal Park, the event kicked off in 2013 with The Rolling Stones reliving their legendary 1969 gig, plus Bon Jovi, Lionel Richie and many more packing out the park for memorable summer nights.

In 2019, the festival experienced more once-in-a-lifetime moments – Celine Dion slaying the festival, Stevie Wonder stunning with a greatest hits set, Barbra Streisand charming fans and critics alike in a rare show, Florence + The Machine bringing a host of female performers to their day as well co-headliners The National and finally, Robbie Williams royally entertaining a sold out Hyde Park.

The event has featured many now-famous shows from Carole King, Stevie Wonder, Black Sabbath, Take That, Kylie Minogue, The Who, Blur, Kendrick Lamar and so many more.

Every year, each headliner is joined by a full supporting line-up across multiple stages, from major superstars to handpicked developing acts performing for fans from across the UK and the world.

And the midweek programme allows free access to the site with outdoor cinema, street food markets, children’s theatre, fitness classes, summer sports screenings, evening events, live music and much more.

About Elton John:

Elton’s career achievements to date are unsurpassed in their breadth and longevity. Elton is one of the top-selling solo artists of all time. In the UK and US charts alone he has 1 diamond, 32 platinum or multi-platinum, and 21 gold albums as well as over 70 Top 40 hits. He has sold more than 300 million records worldwide.

He holds the record for the biggest-selling single of all time, “Candle in the Wind 1997”, which sold over 33 million copies. Released in 2017 ‘Diamonds’ the Ultimate Greatest Hits album, became Elton’s 40th UK Top 40 album and has spent over 200 consecutive weeks in the top 75 of the UK album charts, over 110 of these in the top 20. This release celebrated 50 years of his songwriting partnership with Bernie Taupin. August 2018 saw Elton named as the most successful male solo artist in Billboard Hot 100 chart history, having logged 67 entries, including nine No. 1s and 27 Top 10s. ‘The Lockdown Sessions’, an album of collaborations recorded during the COVID-19 Pandemic, was released in October 2021 and went straight to number 1 in the UK album Charts, becoming Elton’s 8th UK number 1 album in the process. It’s lead single “Cold Heart (PNAU Remix) with Dua Lipa” became a bona fide global hit, reaching number 1 in the UK and Australian singles charts. Its success meant that Elton became the first-ever solo artist to score a UK Top 10 hit single in six consecutive decades. In America, he holds the record for the longest span between Billboard top 40 hits at 50 years.

Elton announced the ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour at New York’s Gotham Hall in January 2018. Encompassing five continents, and over 350 dates, this five year long tour started in September 2018 and marks his retirement from touring after more than 50 years on the road. In 2019 it was named Billboard’s Top Rock Tour and Pollstar’s Major Tour Of The Year. To date, Elton has delivered more than 4,000 performances in more than 80 countries since launching his first tour in 1970. 2019 also saw the release of ‘Rocketman’ and global bestselling autobiography, ‘ME’. An epic fantasy musical motion picture of Elton’s life, ‘Rocketman’ has been a commercial and critical hit, taking close to $200m at the box office. It has won an Oscar, two Golden Globe Awards and a Critics’ Choice Award and garnered BAFTA nominations. Its soundtrack was also nominated for a GRAMMY Award.

Among the many awards and honours bestowed upon him are six GRAMMYs, including a GRAMMY Legend award, a Tony and two Oscars, a Best British Male Artist BRIT Award, induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Kennedy Center Honor, Legend of Live Award, 13 Ivor Novello Awards between 1973 and 2001 and a knighthood from HM Queen Elizabeth II for “services to music and charitable services”.

In 1992, Elton established the Elton John AIDS Foundation, which today is one of the leading non-profit HIV/AIDS organizations and has raised over $515 million to date in the global fight against HIV/AIDS. In June 2019 President Emmanuel Macron presented Elton the Légion d’honneur, France’s highest award, for his lifetime contribution to the arts and the fight against HIV/AIDS. Elton was awarded the Companion of Honour in the 2021 New Year Honours list. The highest acknowledgement in the list, Elton became one of only 64 people to hold the honour. September 2019 saw The Royal Mail issue a set of 12 stamps as a tribute to Elton being one of the most popular and enduring music artists of all time. Elton was only the second individual music artist to be featured in a dedicated stamp issue. In July 2020 the Royal Mint released an Elton John commemorative coin, the second in their music legends series to celebrate ‘one of the most successful and enduring artists of all time’. Always a tireless champion of new artists, Elton has been a leading industry voice in lobbying the government for young artists visa-free touring rights in Europe post-Brexit.

About The Royal Parks:

The Royal Parks manages, protects and improves over 5,000 acres of historic parkland and green space so that everyone has the opportunity to enjoy their natural and historic environments.

It costs around £45 million a year to care for the eight royal parks and your purchase today has helped us raise vital funds for a sustainable future. Thank you.

If you would like to do more to support The Royal Parks charity, please visit royalparks.org.uk/support-the-parks to find out about opportunities such as volunteering or taking on some of London’s most popular sporting events.

About Vodafone UK

Vodafone UK is a technology communications company that connects people, businesses and devices to help our customers benefit from digital innovation. Our services span mobile, fixed-line connections, home and office broadband, and the Internet of Things (IoT).

We have a strong track record as a tech pioneer, making the UK’s first mobile phone call, sending the first text message, and making the UK’s first live holographic call using 5G in 2018. We were also the first to start carrying live 5G traffic from a site in Salford, Greater Manchester. As of March 2022, we have 5G in 380 locations across Europe – 141 in the UK and 239 across Germany, Spain, Italy and Ireland. Our 4G network coverage currently reaches over 99% of the UK population.

Today, Vodafone serves more than 18 million mobile and fixed-line customers in the UK. To help deliver Gigabit UK, our full-fibre broadband roll-out programme now covers 26 UK towns and cities, rising to 35 over the coming months, through partnerships with CityFibre and Openreach. Our full fibre services are now available to more than eight million homes across the UK.

Sustainability is also at the heart of what we do: as of 1 July 2021, 100% of the grid electricity we use in the UK is certified to be from renewable sources.

For more information about Vodafone UK please visit: www.vodafone.co.uk.

Vodafone UK Media Relations

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Email: ukmediarelations@vodafone.com

Twitter: @VodafoneUKNews

Website: https://newscentre.vodafone.co.uk

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