brian news

JUNE 2015

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1 June - Brian and Kerry Ellis, Verona
7 June - Final episode BBC2 'Armada' [Anita Dobson]
9 June - 'London Road' film premiere/broadcast to cinemas
10 June - Brian and Kerry on BBC Radio 2 "Drivetime"
15 June - Brian in documentary "Thomas Chatterton: The Myth of the Doomed Poet" BBC Four 8:30pm - 9pm
18 June - Release Adam Lambert "The Original High" ft Brian May on 'Lucy'
30 June - Asteroid Day - London event info HERE and Ticket link
28 August -Release Motorhead "Bad Magic"album ft Brian May on 'The Devil'.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4

**Thu 25 Jun 15**
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Brian May at Addenbrooke's
Queen guitarist Brian May (pictured centre back) tweeted this picture of his visit to Addenbrooke's

June 25th 2015

Queen guitarist Brian May tweeted this picture of his visit to Addembrooke's. Queen guitarist Brian May said he made "a great new friend" when he visited a patient at Addenbrooke's yesterday.

The musician visited a young girl receiving treatment in hospital and later tweeted: "I made a great new friend @ACTcharity !!! Rock on Jess ! Bri".

Following his visit, Addenbrooke's Charitable Trust (ACT), the dedicated charity for Addenbrooke's and the Rosie Hospitals tweeted: "Thank you very much @DrBrianMay for visiting Jess today, it was a wonderful surprise for her and the staff!"

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**Thu 25 Jun 15**
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ITV This Morning

Brian May and film-maker Grigorij Richters will be ITV1's "This Morning" programme, next Monday 29 June at around noon or soon.

They will be talking about Asteroid Day (which is on 30 June) and the soundtrack Brian has recorded for the 51 Degrees North movie.

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**Wed 24 Jun 15**
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EVERYONE can sign !!! HERE


Petitioning . public and private and philanthropic organisations
To accelerate the discovery and tracking of Near-Earth Asteroids 100 fold (100X)

Asteroid Day 100X Declaration/Petition

To learn more about Asteroid Day click here

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**Wed 24 Jun 15**
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Brian tried a quick test of his Queen knowledge with the new Queen "Play The Game" official app. Can you do better than Brian?

Brian May tests his own knowledge of Queen. He LITERALLY 'Plays The Game'!

Do better than Brian in Queen’s only official app, download from the app stores here: Apple;, Android:

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**Tue 23 Jun 15**
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Brian May

23 June 2015 by Rebecca Black

One of the best-known musicians in the world has described the plans for a massive pig farm in Co Antrim as a "horrific prospect". Queen guitarist Brian May has spoken out in the Belfast Telegraph as Antrim and Newtownabbey Council considers plans for what will be Northern Ireland's biggest pig farm.

Farmer Derek Hall has submitted plans for the facility on the Rae Hill Road in Newtownabbey, and argues that it will allow his pigs more space and better conditions.

More than 2,000 people have written official objection letters to the council over the plans, and 184,000 people have signed an online petition against it.

Now Mr May has added his voice to the growing global outrage the plans have sparked. He told the Belfast Telegraph he was concerned because he feels the proposed pig plant is cruel and degrading to the animals, and also expressed worry it could put smaller farmers out of business.

"Mechanised farming on this scale is a horrific prospect," he said. "Cruel and degrading to the animals, it is the final unacceptable step into the complete denial that animals have any feelings, or any right to a decent life and a decent death. These vile factories are the antithesis of humane farming, and in the USA have already virtually wiped out traditional farmers of the land."

Mr May has urged the councillors to say 'no' to the plans. "The water run-off from such plants contaminates the water table, causing irreversible damage to the environment, and has been linked to sickness in the surrounding areas," he said. "There are so many healthier, more humane, more efficient, and ecologically more viable ways to feed ourselves. We believe these factories are an obscenity and Britain should say a firm 'no' to allowing them into our country."

Mr May is a committed animal rights activist and set up the campaigning group, the Save Me Trust.

Opponents of the pig farm will be holding a public meeting tonight at 7pm at the Elim Church in New Mossley.

Derek Hall has rejected the comments by Mr May, saying his plans are "completely different" to the American pig units referred to. He has also invited the musician to his plant - if permission is granted for it to be built - to see conditions for himself. "Unlike America, the pig industry here is highly regulated and I have government inspections at least quarterly to ensure all guidelines are being met and, in my case, often exceeded and that the welfare of the pigs is of paramount importance," he said. "In America, the pigs are weaned at an earlier age which increases dependency on antibiotics and they also use drugs that are illegal here.

"All of our animals are born and reared on our current farm before being sent to market and this would not change. Many local consumers who want to eat pork, and supermarkets who sell it, want their products to be from the UK or Ireland where they know that the welfare of the pigs is being monitored. We plan to invest millions of pounds in the very latest state-of-the-art farming methods. This will give further enhanced welfare, giving animals up to 30% more space than government legislation states with an anaerobic digester to virtually eliminate odour and a full range of technology to massively reduce noise, dust and our impact on the environment.

If we do get planning permission for the new farm, once it is built I would be proud to welcome a visit from Mr May to see the conditions and high levels of animal welfare for himself."

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**Sun 21 Jun 15**
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Get your ticket for our 51 hour Ticket Sale for 30 June Asteroid Day London Event. Don't delay !! Offer Ends 23 June 2015 12:00

Details and booking here:

Asteroid Day London event banner

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**Sat 20 Jun 15**
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Dr Brian May's Wood is blooming and wildflowers are growing again & again!

May's Wood 1

May's Wood 2

May's Wood 3

May's Wood 4
Photos: Linda Lamon

Thanks to Linda Lamon

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**Fri 19 Jun 15**
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1 Chris Martin
2 Liam Gallagher
3 Mick Fleetwood
4 Brian May
5 Tom Meighan

6 Roger Waters
7 Mick Jagger
8 Matt Bellamy
9 David Bowie
10 Johnny Marr

Brian May on Spotify

Spotify reveals the most-listened to dads ahead of Father's Day
19 June 2015

Coldplay’s Chris Martin can sip from his ‘world’s best Dad’ mug and feel a bit smug this weekend as he can now also lay claim to the title of most-listened to dad, according to Spotify. The music streaming service has revealed the musical fathers whose tracks get listened to the most, and the Coldplay front man comes out on top, ahead of Eminem and Kanye West. French DJ David Guetta and Chris Brown complete the top five, while Michael Jackson, Justin Timberlake and Jay-Z also make the top 10. The music service has even been nice enough to create a playlist from the findings.

Spotify looked at the number of streams each over the last 12 months in order to come up with the list and also compiled one just of British dads.

On this list Liam Gallagher was second to Martin, with Fleetwood Mac’s Mick Fleetwood in third. Queen’s Brian May is fourth, ahead of Kasabian’s Tom Meighan. Roger Waters of Pink Floyd, Mick Jagger, Matt Bellamy, David Bowie and Johnny Marr complete the top 10. And again, there’s a playlist especially for the occasion.

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**Wed 17 Jun 15**
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  • "Beyond the horizon – Tribute to Stephen Hawking" will be the theme of the 3rd Starmus Festival, which will pay homage to the most famous British astrophysicist of all time and confirm the status of Starmus as the world's most ambitious science festival by bringing outstanding personalities in the field of science education and space exploration together in Tenerife once again.
  • In the words of Professor Hawking: "With this next edition, STARMUS confirms its position as a unique debating chamber for the future of the human race".
  • In addition to Stephen Hawking, Brian May will participate once again, in what he says will be "the greatest edition yet!"
  • Astronaut Michael López-Alegría, who is of Spanish origin, will be among the astronomers, astrophysicists and scientists participating in the event.
  • Tickets go on sale via the organization's web site today, 17 June.
  • The "Starmus" video, featuring a soundtrack by emblematic musician Rick Wakeman, is being released this week on the festival's YouTube channel .

Madrid, 17 June 2015 - The stars of the international world of science will shine brighter than ever in the Canary Islands during the third edition of the Starmus Festival, to be held on Tenerife from 27 June to 2 July 2016. Under the slogan "Beyond the horizon — Tribute to Stephen Hawking", the festival programme will be devoted to the best-known theoretical physicist and populariser of science of all time.

"I am honoured that Starmus III is titled 'Beyond the Horizon: A Tribute to Stephen Hawking'. The vision of Starmus became an incredible reality with its first two historic festivals in 2011 and 2014. With this next edition, Starmus confirms its position as a unique debating chamber for the future of the human race," declared eminent theoretical physicist, Stephen Hawking.

Garik Israelian, founder and director of Starmus, added: "we are very proud and honoured to have the consent of Professor Hawking to pay tribute to him; as a result, the next edition will be a historic milestone on a par with the stature of Stephen Hawking himself".

Considered as one of the most ambitious contemporary science festivals, the next edition of Starmus will feature ten Nobel prizewinners in the fields of Physics, Chemistry and Medicine: Harold Kroto and Eric Betzig (Chemistry, 1996 and 2014, respectively); biologists Carol Greider and Elizabeth Blackburn (shared award for Medicine, 2009); Robert Wilson and David Gross (Physics, 1978 and 2004, respectively); Adam Riess and Brian Schmidt (shared award for Physics, 2011); and the couple Edvard Moser and May-Britt Moser (who shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 2014).

In addition to a glittering line-up of Nobel prizewinners, the festival will feature renowned astronomers, astrophysicists and scientists, including notably astronauts Michael López-Alegría, Garrett Reisman, Chris Hadfield and Russell Schweickart, cosmonauts Alexei Leonov and Sergey Volkov, astrophysicists Neil deGrasse Tyson, Kip Thorne, Martin Rees, Jill Tarter and Robert Williams, and physicist Neil Turok.

Based on the variety of the panel of speakers, this international encounter, which has been gaining in strength since it was conceived in 2011, will cover a range of scientific disciplines. With input from the leading figures in these fields, the festival will debate not only astrophysics and astronomy but also biology, neuroscience, chemistry, physics and, of course, space exploration and the great challenges still facing humanity.

It will also analyse the diffuse relationship between science and science fiction in the area of technology applied to the future of humanity within the framework of a great, unique interactive show in which the public will have the opportunity to discover, through round table discussions, performances and exhibitions, the magic fusion between science, art and music, including the opportunity to visit the international observatories on Tenerife and La Palma.

In addition to the unique tribute and a stellar panel of speakers, the festival also has an Advisory Board composed of well-known figures in various fields, including Peter Gabriel, Alexei Leonov, Stephen Hawking and Brian May.

In addition to the honouree, Stephen Hawking, another repeat participant at Starmus 3 is Brian May, known worldwide for his career as guitarist and composer with rock band Queen. May: "There are many great things about Starmus, but I would emphasise above all how attendees mingle. The educational aspect pervades the entire festival, since the public can freely approach our world-class speakers. There is also the possibility of spending time in a privileged location on the island of Tenerife with people who are an inspiration in different walks of life. You never know who you are going to have breakfast with! I think Starmus 3, dedicated to that wonderful person, Stephen Hawking, will be the greatest of them all!"

Starmus Board

STARMUS BOARD: Rick Wakeman, Alexei Leonov, Garik Israelian, Brian May and Stephen Hawking

Starmus and its scientific and musical legacy

The festival has its own book, "Starmus: 50 Years of Man in Space", with a prologue by Stephen Hawking, which was presented last September in Southampton, UK, to herald the beginning of the second edition of Starmus in Tenerife at the end of that same month.

The magic of Starmus is not confined to science; music is also an essential component of the festival. And Starmus has a legacy in this field too, such as the "Starmus - Sonic Universe" album, released in 2013 by German band Tangerine Dream with guest artist Brian May, one of the most diverse and exciting musical collaborations of all times. A year later, the band NOSOUND presented an album recorded at the Teide Observatory in Tenerife. Famous British keyboardist Rick Wakeman, another of Starmus's musical ambassadors, gave a memorable concert with Brian May during the last edition, and will be providing accompaniment to Starmus 3 with his video composition "Starmus", to be released this week on the festival's YouTube channel.

One of the most prominent members of the Advisory Board, the great Peter Gabriel, former leader of UK bank Genesis, highlighted the close ties between astronomy and music: "Musicians explore and define what exists inside us, astronomers explore and define what exists outside of us. That's precisely what I love about Starmus: the combination of the two worlds".With an almost unbeatable confirmed panel of great minds, the countdown has begun to the next edition of Starmus, in June 2016, amid considerable international expectation. Over the coming months, the organization will unveil new features and surprises in connection with the world's top science event, which will raise the Canary Islands to stardom in science once again. Tickets go on sale today on the websites of the festival itself and of tour operator Kuoni,, which is the exclusive logistics operator for the event.

Since its first edition, the festival has been supported and sponsored by the Tenerife Island Government through Turismo de Tenerife, its tourist agency, as part of its ongoing bid to position the island as one of the great meeting places for the astrophysical community thanks to the privileged conditions of the Tenerife sky, coupled with the experience of astronomical observation and research accumulated by such world-class institutions as the Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands.

Turismo de Tenerife

Tenerife Tourism Corporation is a public body dependent on the Tenerife Cabildo set up to market and enhance the values of the island as a tourist destination. Through the union of different public administrations and the private sector, it operates in three key areas:  tourism promotion, improvements in destination and economic promotion. Its powers include destination upgrades and attracting foreign investments for the development of different projects on the island.  Over 500 partners take part in the management system, to jointly develop and strengthen the planning of tourism strategies.

Cabildo de Tenerife

Tenerife Cabildo is the island’s governing body, public administration and representation. Its powers include providing services and finance or coordinating services with the different municipalities from its departments such as Tourism, Economy, Environment, Culture, Farming, Highways and Land Planning, among others.

Follow Starmus and Tenerife on social networks! 
Starmus -
Twitter | Facebook

Turismo de
Twitter | Facebook

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**Wed 17 Jun 15**
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BP Spotlight: 'Poor man's picture gallery': Victorian Art and Stereoscopic Photography
Tate Britain: Display
7 October 2014 – 1 November 2015
ADMISSION FREE | Part of the series BP Spotlights

Here are details of a related TV programme you may have missed.... and there's a surprise or two!!

15 June - "Thomas Chatterton: The Myth of the Doomed Poet"
BBC Four 8:30pm - 9pm



From approx 18:53 - 26:07 approx


Shows like the colossal art treasures exhibition in Manchester in the summer of 1957, which ran for 141 days and attracted over a million visitors, provided the perfect showcase for “The Death of Thomas Chatterton”, as the painting had come to be known. Being toured round the country, the painting was disseminated to a far wider spectrum of society, including the new urban poor, than if it had remained in private ownership in London. And tapping into a growing Victorian fascination with death, Wallace’s painting proved a palpable hit. At a time of great and rapid urbanisation, the doomed and beautiful Chatterton represented a glimpse of something other.

This was the poet as dandy, yes, but more than that, this was the poet as counter cultural self-sacrificial, utterly intoxicating and dead. But even Wallace’s painting, like Chatterton himself, was to have a curious afterlife.

One of the many eager visitors who had queued to see Wallace’s painting on its tour was a dental surgeon, turned photographer, named James Robinson, and so moved was he that he decided to recreate the scene in the popular form of 3D stereoscopy - and now we can see it in an exhibition at Tate Britain. Displayed alongside Wallace’s painting for the very first time is Robinson’s remarkable take on the Chatterton myth.

At first glance it looks identical to Wallace’s painting with composition and colours, painstakingly copied, but look closer and you begin to notice differences. Chatterton’s face is not the same and the colours don’t look as vivid as they do in the oils, but in order to fully appreciate the stereoscopic image you need to view it as the Victorians did. It takes a moment for your eyes to adjust, but It’s extraordinary when they do. it’s like the hyper-real version of one of Wallace’s paintings, and your’e in the garret with Chatterton. It’s quite remarkable.

The driving force behind this exhibition comes as something of a surprise as it turns out to be none other than Queen guitarist, Brian May, who owns one of the world’s greatest collections of stereoscopic cards


For me it goes back a very long way to my childhood when we used to get little stereo cards in Weetabix packets, and I remember the first time it fell out of the packet. What is this? - two little images that are very flat and quite boring but then you send off your one and sixpence for the viewer and you put the card in the viewer and suddenly this magic happens and you can feel like you can walk in there and it becomes a real-life experience, an immersive experience.

MSR: It it’s an odd effect. When I first looked through the viewer at “The Death of Chatterton” painting, which is a painting I know very well, it’s been so lovingly reproduced, there’s a strange hyper reality to it, which is a slightly odd thing with a death scene. Wonder how do you feel this relates to the painting, when you step into the stereoscopic world of Chatterton’s garret?

BM: Yeah, the painting is already immersive in it’s way, isn’t it. It’s designed to draw you in. You feel like you’re in that room with him. Of course, it lends itself perfectly to the stereoscopic medium and Robinson in 1859 obviously paid his six shillings to go and see the painting and thought, “Ah, I can do this at home and I can make stereoscopic version of this”.

It seems like it took in less than a week to do it and he had it advertised within a week.

If you put the original James Robinson stereo though, into a stereo viewer of the period, a Brewster viewer - this is how it’s done - you then open up the top to get some light in, and the view you get is quite stunning. Now this is a very old, faded and damaged card but the effect is still there. You still get this immersive experience. It still works.

MSR: It is like stepping into the room isn’t it, yeah.

BM: You get then the Victorian experience. But I have a very interesting thing here, which really nobody knows about. We discovered another version of the James Robinson view.

MSR: He’s alive.

BM: He’s alive. (laughs) But this is never ever seen. We now realised that there were two views, at least, of Chatterton - one with him alive, and one where he’s sadly passed away.

MSR: He’s, he’s alive but it looks like it’s about 30 seconds before the painting: his shoes off and he’s got all his torn up poems beneath. He’s not that cheery, is he?

BM: No, he’s got his poison ready.

MSR: He’s got his poison ready but isn’t it strange and ironic, this icon of the poetic death and it’s the one in the death that survived…

BM: The legend lives on.

MSR: The legend lives on. Do you find the painting and its stereoscopic image that striking? What draws you?

BM: I’m fascinated, yes. I think to all of us who’ve been involved in this, it becomes something that lives with you. It’s a kind of haunting experience. Chatterton was a kind of Victorian icon, I suppose, you know, representing the purity of the artist and the pain of the artist, and, yeah, I think we feel very drawn to it, in fact we’ve been trying to recreate it ourselves. As you have magnificently done it here. [chuckling] This is amazing .

MSR: Comparatively Pete Docherty on a Babyshambles album cover uses the image of “The Death of Chatterton” and I guess he has a similar image of a sort of popular bohemian figure. Do you think is stretching it too far to think of rock stars in a similar kind of vein to Chatterton?

BM: There is a parallel, isn’t there. It’s a kind of the tortured artist figure, I suppose, and you could think of Kurt Cobain. I think there’s a little truth in it actually. I think, you know, the artist frequently is this way because he is tortured and sometimes it leads to great creativity and success. Sometimes it leads the other direction down to despair and death, and I feel it’s still definitely, you know. I achieved success and fulfilled a lot of my dreams but I still very often get that feeling: Is it really worth anything, you know? What am I really doing? What’s my motivation? It runs through your life as an artist, this kind of self-questioning.

So in its extreme form maybe this is it. Maybe here’s he torn up poetry of the man who killed himself. It is a real story. It’s a fictional painting and it’s a fictional stereoscopic card, but it’s a real story. So maybe it’s the ultimate “Bohemian Rhapsody”.

(Laughing) Yeah, that’s completely ruined it for you, hasn’t it, yeah.

Michael Symmons Roberts' documentary on the tragic poet, Thomas Chatterton, who also holds a fascination for Brian May of Queen - helping unravel the myth.

Poet Michael Symmons Roberts explores the mythic afterlife of the 18th-century poet Thomas Chatterton. With access to rare documents and artifacts, and featuring a surprising interview with Queen guitarist Brian May, Michael explains how Chatterton's tragic early death in his London garret aged just 17 was immortalised by a succession of poets and painters and photographers - most notably by the pre-Raphaelite Henry Wallis in his masterpiece known as The Death of Chatterton - and how these successive images of the young Chatterton have saddled poets ever since with the notion of the doomed young artist suffering and ultimately dying in service to the muse.

Brian May and Michael Simmons Roberts

Michael Symmons Roberts at the Tate Exhibition
Michael Symmons Roberts visits The Tate Stereostopic Exhibition

















Death of Chatterton - alive
Thomas Chatterton - ALIVE !!

Death of Chatterton - Bri



The Death of Chatterton painting at the Tate
Tate Exhibition [Photo: Dana Kubick]

Stereoscopic Exhibition at the Tate - near Chatterton painting
Tate Exhibition [Photo: Dana Kubick]

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**Wed 17 Jun 15**
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After the outstanding successes of "Armada" and "London Road", Anita Dobson, the lovely, talented Mrs May, has a theatre run coming up soon - a comedy. She is fab in comedy !!!

1- 18 July - 'She Stoops To Conquer' Theatre Royal Bath. Tickets

Anita Dobson - She Stoops To Conquer

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