Isle of Wight Men: Noel Gallagher, George Ezra and Biffy Clyro to headline festival where vast majority of acts are white and male

First announcement of 29 acts features one non-white act, and seven women

Roisin O'Connor
Wednesday 23 January 2019 09:04
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Isle of Wight festival has chosen three all-white male acts to headline its event, for the second year running.

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, George Ezra and Biffy Clyro are headlining, with special guest Fatboy Slim announced for a slot on the main stage on Saturday night.

Also on the first wave of acts to be announced are DMA's, Courteeners, Gerry Cinnamon, IDLES, James, Jess Glynne, KT Tunstall, Lily Allen, Madness, Miles Kane, Mystery Jets, Richard Ashcroft, Bastille, Rick Astley, Sam Fender, Sigala, The Coral, Tom Walker, Wild Front, Anne-Marie and Dean Lewis also on the lineup.

Out of 29 acts confirmed so far, only seven are women and just one is non-white.

The announcement comes amid calls to improve diversity on British festival lineups. Several independent events have signed up to the Keychange initiative, which encourages festivals to achieve a 50 per cent gender balance by 2022.

Commenting on their headline spot, Scottish rock band Biffy Clyro said: "We are delighted to be headlining the Isle of Wight festival again. 'Tis a beauty. Hail Satan!"

Ezra said: "It's been less than 18 months since I was last at the Isle of Wight festival, but it already seems like a world away. In the time since, my second album Staying at Tamara's has been released and I've taken these songs around the world and back.

"It's going to be brilliant to return to the beautiful Isle and play those new songs to an audience that has now heard the record. I'm extremely flattered to have been asked to headline and can't wait to get up and play. See you soon!"

Isle of Wight celebrated its 50th anniversary last year with headliners Liam Gallagher, Kasabian, Depeche Mode and The Killers.

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