Singer-songwriter, Sting, and entertainers Ant and Dec will join a stellar cast at the Great North Run Million opening ceremony on Thursday 4 September. The former Police frontman will perform ‘The Last Ship’, from his album and upcoming Broadway play of the same name - inspired by and drawn from his childhood growing up beside the Swan Hunter shipyard.
Ant and Dec will open the show on the Newcastle Gateshead Quaysides, and be a part of a special ceremony - involving the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) - which will officially acknowledge the Bupa Great North Run as the first event in the world to reach its one millionth finish.
Ant said: “We were the official starters of the Bupa Great North Run in 2010, and for us, the sheer scale of the event then seemed incredible. When you think about that happening year on year for over 30 years, resulting in the finish line being crossed one million times - it really is a special milestone.”
Dec added: “The show will be like nothing we’ve ever seen on the Tyne before. Obviously, as a Newcastle fan, I’m looking forward to hearing Mark Knopfler play Local Hero live, but we’ve heard a little bit more about what to expect and the whole night will be an epic celebration of everything that has made our region great.”
Alongside Sting and Dire Straits legend Mark Knopfler, the event will also feature Jimmy Nail, performances from multi-platinum selling Chase & Status, with narration from Tim Healy and Jill Halfpenny. The Sage Gateshead will be transformed into a giant screen for large-scale projections of film and animation.
Anyone who has ever taken part in the Great North Run, or who has a place in this year’s event, is eligible for one of 10,000 free tickets for the event, by applying at the Great Run website. The half marathon takes place on Sunday 7 September.