21 Mar 2014

Wow! Music icon Kate Bush announces live comeback

Kate Bush will play a run of dates in London later this year, 35 years since her last tour.

Kate Bush announces 2014 concert dates. (Getty)

“I am delighted to announce that we will be performing some live shows this coming August and September,” the singer announced on her website.

Kate Bush will play 15 nights at London’s Hammersmith Apollo from late August until mid-September with a show called Before the Dawn.

The news sent Twitter into overdrive with the hashtag #katebushtwittermeltdown doing the rounds on the social media site as fans described a mix of excitement and worry about the huge demand for tickets.

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The 55-year-old has famously not toured since the spring of 1979. A complex combination of music and choreography during what was nicknamed the “Lionheart tour” has generally been blamed for her lack of live action since, bar a few small charity appearances. The 1979 show included mime, magic and readings and was a critical success but is thought to have exhausted the “perfectionist” Bush. She was also distraught when a lighting director, Bill Duffield, was killed in an accident at the start of the month-long tour.

In a rare interview with Mojo magazine in 2011, Kate Bush said: “It was enormously enjoyable. But physically it was absolutely exhausting.

“I still don’t give up hope completely that I’ll be able to do some live work, but it’s certainly not in the picture at the moment because I just don’t quite know how that would work with how my life is now.”

A Kate Bush comeback was rumoured during the run-up to the London Olympics. A remix of her song, Running Up That Hill, was released and used during the closing ceremony. But no physical appearance followed.

Often labelled “reclusive” by music journalists, Kate Bush released the album Aerial in 2005 after a 12-year absence from the music scene. Since then there has been 2011’s Director’s Cut, made up of remixed songs from classic albums The Red Shoes and The Sensual World, followed by 50 Words for Snow, her last album of new music in the same year.

Below: Kate Bush on stage in 1979

‘Beauty beyond belief’

Kate Bush took the pop world by storm in her teens, reaching number one with Wuthering Heights at the age of 19. Her mix of theatrics and prolific songwriting drew comparisons with David Bowie. Both became superstars of the late 1970s and 1980s.

Her mix of undulating ballads, filmic concept albums and weird dance moves have influenced generations of musicians from Madonna to Lady Gaga via Tori Amos, PJ Harvey and Florence and the Machine. John Lydon, of the Sex Pistols, described her work as “beauty beyond belief”.

She was awarded a CBE in the 2013 new year’s honours list.

The first show is on Tuesday 26 August, with tickets on sale at 9.30am from Friday 28 March.