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OIly Alexander returns to Nottingham and says 'it's exciting to come back with a brand new show'

By Caroline Barry

Years & Years singer, Olly Alexander is set to play Motorpoint Arena in the city centre on Monday, May 23. It's a triumphant return for the Channel Four-star as his band have played across the city centre including as part of Nottingham's Dot to Dot festival when he was just starting out.

Olly said: "In the early days, I played at Nottingham around 2015 so it's been a while. It's going to be exciting to come back with a brand new show. We have special guests, L Devine, Queer House Party and Eddy Luna performing with us. Eddy Luna is only performing in Nottingham as she is a local girl so it's going to be so exciting for the audience to see her."

Years & Years played Rock City as part of the Dot to Dot festival alongside Wolf Alice and Catfish and the Bottlemen. The festival sees multiple bands play across the city in different venues each year. Olly recalled the gig which was in Rock City and also remembered attending the infamous gig where The Pizza Underground were booed off stage and covered in beer.

Read more: Fear of 'the unthinkable' as popular Nottingham shop could close after 40 years as owners issue plea

Olly Alexander of Years & Years (Olly Alexander of Years & Years)

"I remembered playing Rock City and we played there a few times as part of the Dot to Dot festival. I saw Macaulay Culkin's band, The Pizza Underground there. It was actually shocking and the whole experience was wild as it was so funny. It's a really iconic venue."

The show is centered around the band's new album titled Nightcall which is centered around the idea of a night out with songs that make you want to dance. Nightcall is the third album from the band and a critically acclaimed follow-up to Palo Santo which was released in 2018. The three albums have earned the band, five Brit nominations and sold-out global tours.

"I wanted every song to feel as if you could get up to dance and feel like you've been taken somewhere really special. The tour is trying to reflect that and I've worked with Theo Adam, the creative director who put together my Brits performance with Elton John to create the show. He is such a visionary so we've been making a theatrical show with all the new songs but some Years & Years classics in there," he said.

Preparation has been intense for the tour with nonstop rehearsals. With so many moving parts, videos and dance routines to learn, Olly feels it has been a bit like a pop boot camp.

Olly said: "There is so much going on as we've been in proper production rehearsals because there are all these moving parts. We've had band, dance and rehearsals for the past six weeks to get everything together. We've also created these mini-movies to screen so it's been a long process where everything had to be lined up. It's like being in a pop boot camp but it's been good to get back to dancing and singing.

The tour starts will start on May 19 but the UK tour will start to include the US and European dates after June. The final date will be in Paris in October. Olly is excited to start the tour and planning to put everything into performing.

"I love sleeping in my own bed so I don't actually sleep well on a tour bus but sometimes the motion can rock me to sleep. Otherwise, I'm usually really excited to go on tour and look forward to every part of it. It's actually quite short for us as it's not going on for months so you can really put your all into it."

The tour will turn into festival appearances during the summer where the band is playing Glastonbury.

Olly said: "The tour will start to become festivals including Glastonbury and Wilderness before we play in Europe and the US. We are hoping to do a European tour in Autumn so it's going to take up a lot of time. I am hoping to get some new music too."

Fans were disappointed to note that It's a Sin did not pick up any BAFTA awards despite being nominated for awards. The critically acclaimed show has been 'life changing' for Olly but he didn't anticipate the reaction to the series. Following the show’s broadcast, the Terrence Higgins Trust reported a four-fold increase in HIV Testing Week stats from previous years.

"It was phenomenal as making the show meant a lot to me and it was a life-changing experience. I didn't anticipate how meaningful the show would be to people who watched it. It's so moving to see the impact that it has had and the conversations it created. I'll forever be amazed by it."

Years & Years play the Motorpoint Arena on Monday, May 23. Tickets are available through the Motorpoint Arena website and start at £35

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Dive Deeper:
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TOWIE star Megan McKenna announces she is performing at Glastonbury Festival this summer
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Get all your news in one place