Robbie Williams pulls out of Olympics closing ceremony

Singer withdraws from closing party due to his impending fatherhood

Robbie Williams has reportedly pulled out of the Olympic Games’ closing ceremony.

The concert will take place on August 12 at London’s Olympic Park and is confirmed to feature the likes of The Who, Take That, George Michael and Emeli Sandé, with several other surprise performers also scheduled to play.

According to today’s (July 2) Daily Mirror, Williams was set to perform a number of his own hits and a cover of David Bowie‘s ‘Life On Mars?’, and, it was thought, he would also join his bandmates in Take That for part of their set. However, he has now reportedly pulled out as his wife Ayda Field is due to give birth to their first child at around the same time as the ceremony.

A source told the paper: “Robbie quit a few weeks ago. He had been lined up to perform solo material and it was hoped he would sing with Take That. However, just as rehearsals were kicking off, he said there was an unfortunate clash of dates. It meant organisers had to adjust the entire schedule, because Robbie is an extremely high-profile performer, and had been given such an important role in the finale.”

They continued: “A lot of organisers are now very unhappy. It’s such a huge moment for British music and they thought they had the perfect line-up. Obviously, Robbie has to put his family commitments first. It’s just a shame he didn’t realise earlier.”

Asked to confirm this, a spokesman for Williams said: “He was asked to do the closing ceremony but due to the imminent birth of his baby, he couldn’t take part.”

Duran Duran, Snow Patrol, Paolo Nutini and Stereophonics will play a huge show in London’s Hyde Park this summer to mark the start of the Olympics on July 27. Blur will headline another show in Hyde Park to celebrate the end of the games. They will be joined by New Order and The Specials on August 12 for the gig.