Kitchen nightclubs at Twitter parties: celebrities who helped make 2020 more bearable | Ents & Arts News


After months of lockdowns and restrictions, live music and theater performances are still far from returning to normal – but some stars have gone above and beyond to bring entertainment into our lives and make things better a bit.

With extended periods stuck at home during what has been a truly strange and horrible year, we need our favorite TV shows, music and books more than ever.

So here we salute the celebrities who did their part to make a difference during the COVID-19[feminine[feminine pandemic.

Tim Burgess

When the UK entered its first lockdown in March, Tim Burgess knew music could help keep morale high. While other artists have taken the route of streaming concerts, with more or less success, the singer of the Charlatans had a different idea: listening evenings, on Twitter, with everyone pressing the same album by same time and fans interacting with the artists who created them.

Burgess had actually hosted listening sessions before, but realized they could be more important than ever during the pandemic. From Oasis and Blur to Kylie Minogue and Paul McCartney, over 600 iconic albums have been celebrated and, 10 months later, the parties are still going strong, every day. Which means the musician spent a lot of time on Twitter in 2020. “I just thought it might be useful, that simple,” he told Sky News, when the eavesdropping started. “It was that idea – we can listen together, separately. ”

Not only did the parties bring people together, but they also gave fans time to sit down and listen to their favorite albums in full – something that has been lost in the age of streaming. There’s no doubt that Burgess’s listening parties have helped a lot during tough times, and with live music still out of reach, it looks like this will continue into 2021 – we’ll see you on New Years for Fatboy Slim and the so fit, You’ve come a long way, baby.

Sophie Ellis-Bextor

It’s the healthy and somewhat chaotic feeling of Sophie Ellis-Bextorthe kitchen nightclubs that made it the highlight of online music lockdown. While other stars tried to recreate the polish of a show on stage, it was about having fun with the family at home – but with a big ball of glitter and with our star adorned with glitter all the time. , of course.

With her kids jostling and bickering in disguise in the background, Ellis-Bextor took us down on Instagram with hits including her 2000 Groovejet smash (If This Ain’t Love) and Take Me Home – reworked for encourage all of us to stay at Home.

And of course there was a Christmas disco – with a performance by Dancing Queen. “Shimmy through this, my darlings,” she said. “There is no other way to do it. Someday we’ll do it in real life together but for now my home is your home. »God bless Sophie Ellis-Bextor.

Dolly Parton à Glastonbury en 2014

Dolly Parton

“Vaccine, vaccine, vaccine, vacciiiiine” was the tweet that was circulating when it appeared that Dolly Parton had donated $ 1 million (£ 814,000) at Vanderbilt University Medical Center – a partner of US company Moderna, which developed one of the COVID-19 vaccines.

Fans say she has cured the coronavirus. While that milestone is still a long way off, the country singer has certainly done her part. Earlier in the lockdown, she also did weekly online readings for children and recorded a new song called When Life Is Good Again, devoted to the pandemic and the lockdown.

“When life is good, I’ll be a best friend,” she sang. “I will open my heart and let the whole world in. I’ll try to make amends, when life is good again. When life is good again, Parton will have played a big role in making it happen.

Bill Bailey et Oti Mabuse, lauréats de Strictly Come Dancing 2020.  Pic: BBC / Guy Levy

Bill Bailey et Oti Mabuse

Strictly Come Dancing is always happy, but this year’s series, which the producers managed to pull off despite all the coronavirus restrictions, was the sparkling Saturday night TV we needed to keep our spirits up. Along with Claudia Winkleman’s gorgeous bangs, the highlight of 2020 was of course seeing comedian Bill Bailey lift that glitter trophy alongside his professional dance partner, Oti Mabuse.

At the start of the series, many may have viewed the 55-year-old as one of the more comedic acts, but how he proved them wrong. Was he the best dancer? Technically, no, but he was up there, and definitely the most entertaining. Her and Mabuse’s dance on The Sugarhill Gang’s Rapper’s Delight was the show’s biggest viral moment. They fully deserved to win – and the brilliant Mabuse for the second year in a row, nothing less.

Plus, after playing Queen’s The Show Must Go On in the finale, Bailey had this message of hope: “It’s not just a song about the arts, it’s a hymn about not giving up, to keep hope, to overcome that. is it – The Show Must Go On. It’s a hymn to be strong and to go through it all. ”

We don’t cry, you cry.

Irish duo John and Edward Grimes, AKA Jedward, pose on the red carpet arriving to attend the 2017 MTV Europe Music Awards (EMA) at Wembley Arena in London on November 12, 2017


When Jim Corr, Ian Brown, Van Morrison, and Right Said Fred rallied together to become some sort of weird supergroup complaining about masks, there was two unlikely heroes who weren’t afraid to face them. Ladies and gentlemen, we give you John and Edward Grimes, better known as Jedward, who have repeatedly criticized those who violate coronavirus restrictions, regardless of size or fame.

After Corr attended a protest, they tweeted, “G’wan left the whole country ‘breathless’ from Covid because of your silly behavior. (Breathless, to all the non-Corrs fans out there, was a number one hit for the group in 2000.) And in response to a tweet since Brown has deleted, the Irish twins said: “The audience has lost everything. respect and credibility for your opinions! Your music and your cheekbones are a dream ❤️ but your tweets are a nightmare. ”

And it’s not just the coronavirus restrictions they’ve taken a stand on, also participating in the Black Lives Matter protests and using their platform to demand better compensation for nurses and to support Joe Biden. And to “all we have offended” this year, they have this message: “You deserved it! Be a better version of yourself for 2021! ”

Frank Turner performs at Virgin Money Unity Arena on September 7, 2020 in Newcastle

Frank Turner

Punk-folk singer Frank Turner was one of the musicians supporting the Save Our Venues campaign, supporting hundreds of venues threatened with permanent closure because they had to keep the doors closed.

“I hope we come out to the other side with a better appreciation of what the arts and live music in particular bring to people’s lives,” he told Sky News in May.

Running a small room is “a pretty thankless job at the best of times,” he said, and “certainly not a way for anyone to become a millionaire.” The musician therefore did his part to help.

By performing albums from his online back catalog for 16 weeks, he helped raise just under £ 200,000 for the cause. He also tested a socially distant show at Clapham Grand in London.

Manchester United's Marcus Rashford in action during the Premier League match against Leeds United at Old Trafford on December 20, 2020

Marcus Rashford

Far from the music, the star of England and Manchester United Marcus Rashford was the undisputed hero of the pandemic. By campaigning for funds to help feed vulnerable and underprivileged children, he was able to get the government to change its mind by providing cash for the holiday season.

In November, Boris Johnson phoned the footballer to tell him £ 170million was set aside for the Christmas holidays. But Rashford didn’t just stop at meals, revealing weeks later that he was starting a book club to help kids experience the escape from reading – claiming his own family had to prioritize reading. food versus pounds when it came to budgeting when he was. Young.

“We know there are over 380,000 children across the UK today who have never owned a book, children who live in vulnerable environments,” he said. “This has to change. My books are, and always will be, for every child, even if I have to deliver them myself. We will reach them. ”


Dame Vera Lynn

Known as the darling of the forces for her frontline visits during WWII, Vera LynnThe music of provided the same moral boost at the start of the first lockdown.

We’ll Meet Again was referenced by the Queen during her speech on the coronavirus pandemic in April, and the singer has teamed up to re-record the song with Katherine Jenkins (pictured above) to raise money for charities.

She died in June at the age of 103, her words once again comforting her in times of crisis.

East 17 in 1995. From left to right: Tony Mortimer, John Hendy, Terry Coldwell and Brian Harvey

Tony Mortimer

Special mention goes to Tony Mortimer (left in photo above), formerly of East 17 fame, who not only discovered the joy of reading his first novel during lockdown (Secrets Of The Greek Revival, a mystery house haunted by American novelist Eva Pohler, according to an interview in The Times) but loved it so much that he has since read over 70 books, and was even forced to write his own with the help of a practical guide from Stephen King.

It hasn’t been released yet, so it might be a bit early to call him a cultural hero, but the idea of ​​a tough old man in the boyband world discovering a love for literature as he ages 50 years old is so heartwarming as it should be. included.

Like Mortimer, many of us have turned to literature on lockdown – there’s no better escape than burying ourselves in a good book, after all. I look forward to reading his own work in the not too distant future.

Crédits photo: Sophie Ellis-Bextor – Richard Jones; Strictly Come Dancing – BBC / Guy Levy


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