Lewis Capaldi steals the show at Radio 1's Big Weekend in Middlesbrough

After putting in a shift at a Middlesbrough Greggs selling pasties before his set, you could have put money on the fact Lewis Capaldi was going to go down a storm with the North East Big Weekend crowd.

Sunday, 26th May 2019, 10:46 am
Lewis Capaldi on the New Music Stage at Radio 1 Big Weekend in Middlesbrough

The Scottish singer's rise to the No 1 album spot has been unstoppable, fuelled by his emotionally-charged gravelly tones and his incredibly self-deprecating humour which has seen him win a legion of loyal fans on social media.

Many of them packed into The New Music Stage on the first full day of Radio 1's Big Weekend in Stewart Park, Middlesbrough, to see him perform tracks from debut album Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent. So many, in fact, that security had to put barriers up to stop people entering the area. He could have easily played the much larger main stage, twice.

But when the star was booked months ago, no one could have predicted quite how fast his ascent to stardom would be. Chants of "Oh Lewis Capaldi" to the tune of The White Stripes' Seven Nation Army rang out as he arrived on stage in style showered in ticker tape.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Then it was down to the serious business of his painfully beautiful tracks such as Grace and Bruises whose sing-a-long-ability fitted perfectly in a festival setting. He closed with aching lament and No 1 long runner Someone You Loved. For those who missed him at Big Weekend you can catch him today at This Is Tomorrow at Newcastle's Exhibition Park.

Day one of Big Weekend provided a pick'n'mix of acts and a mixed bag of weather as early sunshine turned to drizzle. It didn't dampen the spirits of the 30,000-strong crowd, however, who formed very lengthy queues at the loos.

High production values led to slick sets from the likes of Sigala who brought an Ibiza vibe to the grey skies with a tropicana-themed lively set featuring surprise turns from his long list of A List collaborators including Craig David on Ain't Giving Up, Becky Hill on Wish You Well and a rousing, jump in the air cameo from Ella Eyre on summer anthem Came Here For Love.

Rain soon descended on the first full day of Radio 1 Big Weekend in Middlesbrough

Other highlights came from the effortlessly smooth Khalid who was moved to the Main Stage after Jess Glynne pulled out, tweeting her apologies to fans. The US singer proved a perfect replacement, entertaining the soggy crowds with his distinctive laid-back vocals on tracks such as Talk, Location and Better. He was joined by Billie Eilish and her ethereal vocals for a hypnotic performance of Lovely.

Meanwhile, DJ Annie Mac stepped into the breach to fill Khalid's New Music Tent slot with a surprise set in the marquee.

By the time Miley Cyrus closed the first day with a rock chick set - including new songs from her new record - complete with a giant Gucci belt you could practically see from the back of the crowd, no one cared about the weather as they danced with parmos in the rain.

Around 30,000 are expected for day two today which will include sets from Little Mix, Catfish and the Bottelemen, Jax Jones, The 1975, Ellie Goulding and Rita Ora.

Khalid on the Main Stage at Radio 1 Big Weekend in Middlesbrough

See Lewis Capaldi do work experience at Greggs here.

Crowds at Stewart Park for Radio 1 Big Weekend in Middlesbrough
Sigala on the Main Stage at Radio I Big Weekend in Middlesbrough
Miley Cyrus closed the first full day of Big Weekend in Middlesbrough
Headliner Miley Cyrus at Radio 1 Big Weekend in Middlesbrough