A brand new YouTube festival has been announced as the ongoing pandemic continues to leave live music in a weird new space. This time it is Teenage Cancer Trust, a long-running and well-valued charity in Britain, which has been affected. But the organisers have found a cunning way around not being able to use the Royal Albert Hall as they have done for many years—online streaming.
The organisers have confirmed that as part of Teenage Cancer Trust Unseen, there will be a host of previously unseen performances from some of the event’s incredible history live-streamed for the waiting audience. Each night will see a new act with Ed Sheeran kicking things off on October 8th until The Cure’s unseen show closes down the even on October 19th.
Heading over to YouTube’s TCT Unseen will provide you with all the information you need on when and how to watch the performances. What we can certainly say with a heavy degree of authority is that the acts and performances lined-up to appear truly are impressive. As well as Ed Sheeran and The Cure, there is also room for Paul McCartney, Pulp and Muse.
One of the event’s principal organisers is The Who frontman Roger Daltrey who has been a part of the event form the very beginning. This year was the 20th anniversary of the event’s inception and was set to welcome a serious array of talent including The Who, Paul Weller, Noel Gallagher, Nile Rodgers & Chic, Mumford & Sons, Stereophonics and Groove Armada.
Speaking with NME, Daltrey said of the difficult decision to cancel the shows: “It was heartbreaking. Coming up to the shows, I could see the car crash was happening. But it’s important to say we’ve only postponed, not cancelled, because we’re hoping all the artists who were due this year will be there next year instead.”
In the meantime, the way to help the charity, who have lost around £5 million due to cancellations because of lockdown is to take part in their raffle. The winner will receive the hand-painted Schecter guitar Robert Smith played during The Cure’s Teenage Cancer Trust shows in 2014, as well as a host of other prizes. The chance of winning the guitar is worth the fiver entry alone.
For Daltrey, it is simple: “I know times are hard for everybody, but if everyone donated the price of a cup of coffee or even £1, it’d be enough. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that viewers realise donating is incredibly necessary. It’s the only way for charities like us to raise income. Charities like Teenage Cancer Trust, Marie Curie, Art Click and Macmillan Nursing work within the NHS, but they’re not part of it. If these charities fall apart from lack of funding, the burden on the NHS would be every bit as bad as coronavirus.”
Enter the raffle, donate and buy merchandise to support the Teenage Cancer Trust here.