Dudamel to Participate in the London 2012 Festival

The London 2012 Summer Olympics may be 37 days away… But, Gustavo Dudamel will be getting people into the Olympic spirit this week.

On Thursday, June 21, the 31-year-old Venezuelan conductor will help kick off the London 2012 Festival, a cultural celebration across Britain tied to the Summer Olympics.

Gustavo Dudamel

Dudamel, who won a Grammy this year for Best Orchestral Performance, will lead Venezuela’s Orquesta Sinfónica Simón Bolívar in a big open-air concert at Scotland’s Stirling Castle during the kick off event, which will include a fireworks display by Lake Windermere in northwest England.

The London 2012 Festival, which runs through September 9, will include 12,000 events and performances across the United Kingdom in celebration of the Summer and Paralympic Games. Organizers say there will be 10 million tickets for free and paid-for events in such fields as film, music, theater, fashion, dance and art.

Musical stars, including Jay-Z, Rihanna, David Guetta and Elton John, films from the likes of Alfred Hitchcock and Mike Leigh and art from Yoko Ono and others will all be part of the festival, which is being described as “the biggest festival the U.K. has ever seen.”

With a budget of around £55 million ($86 million), the celebration is seen as a chance to showcase Britain’s cultural heritage and get the country in the Olympic spirit.

One of the most star-studded events of the London 2012 Festival will be a BBC Radio 1 show being dubbed the “biggest-ever free live music event.” The lineup for the June 23 and 24 extravaganza, which will feature six stages in the Hackney Marshes area of East London, includes Jay-Z, Rihanna, Flo Rida, David Guetta, Jessie J, Lana del Rey, Leona Lewis, Florence and the Machine and more.

Click here for a complete look at the London 2012 Festival.

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