George Michael defends Olympic closing ceremony performance

Singer was accused of playing his new track 'White Light' for promotional purposes

George Michael has defended his performance at the Olympic closing ceremony.

The singer played his new single ‘White Light’ – which is inspired by his recent life-threatening battle with pneumonia – at the ceremony on Sunday (August 12). It led some to accuse him of using the ceremony to promote his new material.

“I hope you are not bothered by the press reports of my scandalous ‘promotion’!!!” the former Wham! singer wrote on Twitter. He also performed his 1990 hit ‘Freedom’.

Earlier this week, Kasabian told NME that George Michael was their highlight of the evening. “George Michael did a monster,” Serge Pizzorno said. “Playing his new single blew my mind! He’s on his own in the middle of it, lost, looking for his Range Rover!”

The closing ceremony also featured performances from Beady Eye – where Liam Gallagher performed Oasis’ ‘Wonderwall’ for the first time since the band split in 2009 – as well as The Who, Muse, Elbow and the Spice Girls.

All the bands have seen a surge in sales following the event, with Oasis’ 1995 album ‘(What’s The Story) Morning Glory’ rising to Number 34 in the iTunes Album Chart.

Sunday’s event – titled ‘A Symphony Of British Music’ was conceived as a celebration of the last 50 years of British music.