Probyn Chosen To Showcase London

Live Nation will be running the entertainment planned for London’s Trafalgar Square and three city parks during the 2012 Olympic Games.

The Mayor of London, The Royal Parks and Tower Hamlets Council announced the decision Feb. 25.

LN’s not getting paid for the job, although it will have the commercial rights to stage concerts and offer hospitality packages, food and drink concessions and merchandising opportunities.

The English capital is keen to use the Olympics to put itself in the shop window as a tourist destination.

Chief ops officer John Probyn, who runs his company’s summer outdoor shows in London’s Hyde Park and Download Festival, believes it’s likely to be “the biggest thing I will ever do in my lifetime” but he says he’s looking forward to it.

“Live Nation has produced some of the biggest multi-artist events in London including Live 8, Concert for Diana, Wireless Festival and Hard Rock Calling, but this event reaches entirely new levels,” he said. “Combining every magical sporting moment throughout the London sites and showcasing a world class lineup of multi-cultural activity and internationally known artists, this will be the most exciting chapter in the history of Live Nation in the UK.”

Probyn and his team will organise and promote events at what are being called “Festival Live Sites,” which will be at Hyde Park, Victoria Park, Trafalgar Square and Potters Fields Park on the banks of the River Thames and next to City Hall.

Hyde Park, where LN stages Wireless and Hard Rock Calling, is the largest of the London Live Sites and will also host the Triathlon and Marathon Swimming events.

The sites are being created to enable Londoners and visitors to come together to experience and celebrate the excitement of the Games on large outdoor screens.

There will also be a unique programme of free entertainment during the Olympic and Paralympic Games, including concerts, cultural and artistic performances and exhibitions to showcase London and the UK to the world.

Probyn sees it as a remarkable opportunity for the city and the UK to show the rest of the world how to celebrate en masse and embrace the spirit of the Games.

“Whether it is watching the Games as they unfold, or seeing a fabulous international act performing against these wonderful backdrops, we’re in for a summer to remember,” said London Mayor Boris Johnson.