Entertainment

Queen to tour Japan for what could be last time

Brian May of Queen and Adam Lambert perform live on stage at the Isle of Wight Festival (PA Archive/David Jensen)
Brian May of Queen and Adam Lambert perform live on stage at the Isle of Wight Festival (PA Archive/David Jensen)

British rock band Queen are returning to Japan with the band set to play the city of Sapporo, which they last visited more than 40 years ago.

The Rhapsody tour is coming to four cities in Japan, with the concert remaining a tribute to the legacy of lead singer Freddie Mercury who died in 1991 due to complications relating to Aids.

American artist Adam Lambert will lead vocals while Sir Brian May plays the guitar and Roger Taylor performs on the drums.

Teasing that this could be the band’s last tour in Japan, Taylor said: “We are so excited to be returning to Japan, the country that has always held a special and most honoured place in our hearts.

Isle of Wight Festival 2016
Brian May of Queen and Adam Lambert perform live on stage at the Isle of Wight Festival (PA Archive/David Jensen)

“This may be the last time… who knows? We promise to bring a very real spectacular for you to enjoy.”

In the autumn, the band will kick-start their 22-date North American tour, which will lead into the Japan tour, starting in February 2024.

The tour will begin on February 4 in Nagoya, with the band going on to perform in Osaka on February 7, Sapporo on February 10 and finishing with two shows at the Tokyo Dome on February 13-14.

The band last played at Sapporo, capital of the Japanese island of Hokkaido, during the Hot Space tour of 1982.

The country is a regular feature on Queen’s touring schedule and the band and Lambert returned to the country in 2020 to perform four sold-out shows.

Speaking about the performances, Lambert said: “The Japan shows back in 2020 were so much fun, the audience were incredible. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to come back. Can’t wait.”

Decorating the Rhapsody tour setlist is a back catalogue of hits which include We Will Rock You, Don’t Stop Me Now and Radio Ga Ga.

Alongside Lambert, May and Taylor, Spike Edney will perform on keys, with Neil Fairclough on bass guitar and Tyler Warren on percussion.

Tickets for the Rhapsody tour go on pre-sale for Japanese customers from August 10 at to October 6, with tickets awarded lottery-style.

Tickets for overseas customers go on pre-sale from October 7 to October 25.