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Music

David Bowie tribute to be staged at National Space Centre

A live David Bowie tribute performance is set to take place at the UK’s largest planetarium later this month.

The planetarium, located at the National Space Centre in Leicester, will host the four special performances titled ‘Bowie: Oddity to Mars’ from 20th-22nd May 2021. The concerts will celebrate the late Starman’s music between 1969 and 1972, a period that saw Bowie shoot to global stardom under his alter ego Ziggy Stardust.

The music will be performed by a five-piece Bowie tribute band named David Live in the Sir Patrick Moore Planetarium. Meanwhile, the planetarium dome will give visitors a 360-degree screening of NASA footage depicting the journey of Apollo 17 and one of the centre’s own shows to accompany the music.

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“It is really fitting this hit show is our first big evening event, following the pandemic,” said Malika Andress, head of marketing for the National Space Centre in a statement. “David Live are phenomenal, bringing the music of David Bowie to life in our planetarium alongside stunning visuals created by our in-house team.”

The shows are to be held in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 17 mission in 1972. Apollo 17 marked the last manned journey to the moon. 

In 1969, Bowie rose to fame with his first hit single ‘Space Oddity’. The single was inspired by the Stanley Kubrick film 2001: A Space Odyssey and the 1960s zeitgeist surrounding space travel and astronomy. 

Discussing the writing of the song in 1969, Bowie said: “The publicity image of a spaceman at work is of an automaton rather than a human being … and my Major Tom is nothing if not a human being. It came from a feeling of sadness about this aspect of the space thing, it has been dehumanised, so I wrote a song-farce about it to try and relate science and human emotion. I suppose it’s an antidote to space fever, really.”

The song was released on July 11th, 1969, as the label had wanted to capitalise on the concurrent Apollo 11 Moon Mission, which launched five days later. The mission became the first successful manned flight to the moon and earned Bowie his first glimpse of fame in the USA.

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