Nile Rodgers says Team GB made everyone feel like heroes after Tokyo success
Chic frontman Nile Rodgers has said Team GB made everyone feel like heroes after their success at the Tokyo Olympics.
The American musician, 68, was among the star-studded line-up who performed at the Team GB Homecoming Concert at the SSE Arena in London on Sunday.
The Grammy award winner and chairman of the Songwriters Hall of Fame said he wanted to perform as he sees the UK as his second home.
When asked why he wanted to perform in the celebratory event for Team GB, he told the PA news agency: “This was awesome because when you put it in context, and you think about what people sacrificed for an entire year of their life, not to mention what they had to do before that.
“And then they come home and we get to make them feel like heroes, and you know what, they made us feel like heroes, which is awesome.”
Also amongst the line-up was Yungblud who covered David Bowie’s Heroes alongside dance-circus company Motionhouse.
The 24-year-old alternative rock and pop-punk musician said his performance was in honour of his friend Sky Brown, who achieved Olympic gold in skateboarding at the Tokyo games at just 13 years old.
Griff, who won the rising star award at the 2021 Brit Awards, wore what she described as “the most prized position in the UK right now”, Tom Daley’s hand-knitted Team GB cardigan, which went viral after the Olympic gold-medallist diver was spotted knitting it during the Tokyo games.
The 20-year-old singer, speaking on the red carpet for the homecoming event, said: “Of course it’s incredible to welcome home the Olympians, especially after this year and to be such a new artist and be on the stage with people like Nile Rogers and Rag’n’Bone Man and all of these incredible Olympians, I just feel very honoured.”
Mica Paris also performed Rise Up by Andra Day alongside theatre company Chickenshed, and Laura Mvula was accompanied by contemporary dance company Rambert.
Discussing her song choice, Paris told PA: “It’s a really powerful song and lyrically it works, it’s perfect for everything that’s happened and the achievement of all of the athletes rising up together, sticking together, they were a team, they did it all together.
“Coming out on such a tough year with all the restrictions and everything else and they only had each other up, it’s amazing.”
The celebration also saw Bastille playing their new single Distorted Light Beam accompanied by a live string orchestra.
Also in the line-up was Anne-Marie, KSI, and Rag’n’Bone Man.
Presented by the National Lottery, the event was held in front of a live audience of 8,000 people, made up of friends and family of athletes, who were unable to travel to Tokyo, as well as keyworkers and National Lottery players.
The National Lottery currently funds more than 1,000 British athletes, with athletes benefiting from coaching, facilities and support teams so they can focus full time on training.
This support has helped Team GB leap from 36th in the medal table with a single gold in 1996 to second with 27 golds in 2016 and 65 medals in Tokyo, equalling their performance at the London Olympics nine years ago.
The event was hosted by BBC Radio 1’s Clara Amfo and Greg James and is also being aired on BBC One from 7.30pm on August 15.