Simply Fantastic

About 200,000 music fans converged on Budapest’s Heroes’ Square June 27 for the annual free open-air concert paid for by telecom giant T-Mobile and the local government.

This year it was Simply Red’s turn to entertain the crowd that gathers at Ötvenhatosok Tere, a large open space between Dózsa György Ut and the actual square.

“It was amazing as always. Everything was fantastic,” said Gabi Toth from promoter Showtime, which has previously brought in a string of international talent including Sting, Santana, Pet Shop Boys and Elton John.

The annual freebie, which has been called “Connection Day” as its sponsor has always been one of the telecom giants, traditionally marks the end of the Budapest Fair weekend festival celebrating the withdrawal of the Soviet troops from Hungary in 1999.

The square, which was originally built to honour the eight knights who are said to have founded Hungary at the end of the ninth century (there’s a statue of each one), became a public rallying point during the politically troubled years that followed WWII.