The AFL has announced an all-Australian line-up that will perform at the Telstra AFL Grand Final Pre-Match and Half-Time Shows on Saturday 25 September 2021.
The AFL Pre-Match Show will feature a host of local Western Australian artists including alternative singer-songwriter John Butler, Fremantle’s ARIA-award winning alternative rock band Eskimo Joe, and guitar-slinging multi-award-winning artist Abbe May.
“I am so excited and honoured to be a part of the Telstra AFL Pre-Match Show for this year’s AFL Grand Final,” said Abbe May. “I know this will be a once in a lifetime experience and I am very proud to be involved with such an important community celebration.”
Also performing will be critically acclaimed musician Stella Donnelly, multi-award-winning duo Gina Williams and Guy Ghouse and sisters Donna Simpson and Vikki Thorn from much-loved Australian Folk-Rock group The Waifs.
Men at Work’s lead singer and successful solo artist Colin Hay will also feature in the Pre-Match Show as well as proud Yolngu man, rapper and Young Australian of the Year, Danzal Baker OAM- known as Baker Boy. In addition, September favourite Mike Brady AM will conduct a special performance remotely from Melbourne.
The Telstra AFL Half-Time Show will feature hometown favourites and popular contemporary rock band Birds of Tokyo alongside the West Australian Symphony Orchestra who will entertain fans in a spectacular performance under lights.
“What an absolute honour and thrill it is to be a part of this year’s Telstra AFL Half-Time Show and have the AFL Grand Final here for the first time in our home city,” said Ian Kenny, Birds of Tokyo. The band is beyond excited to let loose to a full house. This is going to be all time!”
The Welcome to Country will be conducted by proud Noongar man of the South-West region Richard Wally OAM, while the Australian national anthem will be performed by Perth-born Musical Theatre Star and leading lady of The Phantom of the Opera, Amy Manford.
“I am thrilled to be performing at such an iconic Australian sporting event and a particularly exciting moment in history for WA,” said Manford. “I will certainly take pride in singing our national anthem back on home soil, it will be a surreal moment in what has been an unpredictable year for myself and many others.”
AFL Executive General Manager Customer and Commercial Kylie Rogers said the first 2021 Toyota AFL Grand Final held in Perth was a great opportunity to showcase the best Western Australian music talent.
“After the success of a local all-Australian line-up at last year’s Grand Final in Queensland, we know there is incredible support to bring together home-grown talent again this year,” she said.
“The 2021 AFL Pre-Match and Half-Time Shows will celebrate Australian anthems and showcase a host of Western Australia music talent who are all incredibly excited to play in front of a full-house on home soil. This year’s line-up features artists spanning across multiple generations, so we’re confident there will be something for everyone to enjoy.”
“I’d like to thank our longstanding partner Telstra for their support in bringing the 2021 Telstra AFL Pre-Match and Half-Time Shows to life which highlights their ongoing commitment to connecting Australians and their long-term support for Australian sport and the arts,” said Ms Rogers.
“It’s been a tough time for live music so it’s fantastic to have the AFL continue their tradition of supporting homegrown artists,” said Mushroom Chief Executive Matt Gudinski.
“One of my Dad’s proudest achievements was producing the AFL Grand Final entertainment and he would be very excited to see the AFL Grand Final feature all Australian talent again.”
“I’m excited to see such great talent and watch them perform on one of the game’s biggest stages,” said Gudinski.
The 2021 Telstra AFL Pre-Match Show will commence at 4:15pm (AWST) / 6.15pm (AEST) with both the Telstra AFL Pre-Match and Half-Time Shows broadcast nationally on Channel Seven.
Image: Birds of Tokyo – photo by Cybele Malinowski