Blur’s Damon Albarn to perform with the Syrian National Orchestra

Gig will take place at London's Southbank Centre on June 25

Blur frontman Damon Albarn will perform live with the Syrian National Orchestra for Arabic Music at a special gig in London later this year.

The performance will take place at London’s Southbank Centre on June 25, with conductor Issam Rafea leading the orchestra and a host of special guests promised. The gig is presented by Albarn’s Africa Express project and co-commissioned by 14-18 NOW and Holland Festival.

In 2010, Albarn’s Gorillaz project became the first British band to play in the Syrian capital of Damascus, performing a special gig at the Citadel, an 11th Century fortified palace.

The Southbank Centre have also confirmed a number of other gigs for the first half of 2016, with Wu Tang Clan‘s Ghostface Killah headlining the Royal Festival Hall on May 14 and Sun-Kil-Moon playing the same venue on July 22. Find more details on the Southbank Centre website.

NMENME/Pooneh Ghana

Albarn has collaborated with grime MC Kano on ‘Deep Blues’ from the latter’s upcoming album ‘Made In The Manor’. The album also features Wiley and Giggs, and will be released on March 4.

Meanwhile, he was also recently awarded with an OBE in the 2016 New Year’s Honours list for his contribution to music. The likes of Goldie and Idris Elba were also listed this year.