6 Jul

Rock Star To Lead Great North Celebrations

Mark KnopflerTickets are now on sale for the Great North Run Millon Opening Ceremony on the Newcastle Gateshead Quayside on Thursday 4 September. Organisers have confirmed that Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler will perform at the ceremony which marks the millionth finisher at the 13.1 mile event. 

In celebration of the milestone, a world's first, the opening ceremony will feature live music, film and a dance performance, all of which will be held on the Quayside. Four-time Grammy winner Knopfler is best known as the lead guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter for the rock legends Dire Straits, who have sold over 120 million albums to date. Knopler was ranked number 27 in Rolling Stone magazine's list of 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.

He commented: “I’m proud to have been a supporter of this great event from the beginning and am looking forward to being there to play ‘Local Hero’ once more on 4 September 4 when the Bupa Great North Run gets ready to notch up its millionth finish.”

Bupa Great North Run founder Brendan Foster, said: "We're absolutely thrilled to be able to announce, on the day our tickets go on sale, that the music legend Mark Knopfler will be opening our event playing the world-famous tune 'Local Hero'. Mark, who hails from the North East, and Dire Strait's music were our soundtrack in the early days of the Great North Run - that particular track has now become the Great North Run anthem. What better way to kick off this world first event?"

 The Great North Run Million opening ceremony will be broadcast on BBC2 on Sunday 7 September as part of the Bupa Great North Run coverage.

Tickets are now on sale through Ticketmaster, priced at £12 for an adult and £7 for a child (aged 12 or under).