MOBO Awards set to return to Leeds

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IT brought some of the biggest stars in urban music to Leeds two years ago - and now it is set to return, with the 22nd MOBO Awards coming to the city in November.

Two years ago Stormzy was the main victor on stage at the First Direct Arena, taking home the awards for best male act and best grime act, but it was Leeds that was the true winner, with hotels booked up, thousands of music fans in attendance, and the eyes of the music world firmly on the city.

BIG WINNER: Stormzy on stage at the 2015 MOBOs in Leeds.

BIG WINNER: Stormzy on stage at the 2015 MOBOs in Leeds.

Among the unforgettable performances on the night were Lethal Bizzle, who opened the show in style arriving in a Lamborghini, rarely-seen FKA Twigs, best female winner Ella Eyre, and mega star CeeLo Green, who closed the show with a medley of his greatest hits.

Preparations for MOBO’s return to Leeds on November 29 are now well underway - but the names of those who will be performing on the night remain a tightly guarded secret for now.

MOBO founder Kanya King said: “We are truly excited to return to Leeds – we had an amazing experience here two years ago thanks to all our partners and a very enthusiastic and welcoming audience. 
“I still have people coming up to me saying what an electrifying show it was. Looking at the list of musical talent this year, it promises to be another exciting celebration of the best in urban music.”

The MOBO Organisation was founded in 1996 to champion and elevate urban music genres in the mainstream music industry, and past performers have included Jay Z, Rihanna and Destiny’s Child.

Stormzy on stage at the MOBOs in Leeds in 2015

Stormzy on stage at the MOBOs in Leeds in 2015

Last time round, city dignitaries said the success of the event made a great case for its bid to be crowned European Capital of Culture 2023.

And this year’s event, as momentum builds ahead of the submission of Leeds’s official bid on October 27, will be another chance for the city to shine while showcasing its multi-cultural roots.

Leader of Leeds Council, Coun Judith Blake, said: “It is hugely important that as we bid for European Capital Culture we find every opportunity to showcase the cultural diversity of the city on an international stage and MOBO Awards with its support for emerging artists and world wide reputation for championing music of black origin is a fantastic platform for this.”

THE MOBO Awards honour the biggest stars in urban music - and the organisation has played an instrumental role in elevating black music and culture to mainstream popular status in the UK.

Mobo founder Kanya King. Picture Yui Mok/PA Wire

Mobo founder Kanya King. Picture Yui Mok/PA Wire

Founded by Kanya King (pictured), the awards recognise the achievements of artists who perform music in genres ranging from Gospel, Jazz, RnB, Soul, Reggae to Hip Hop.

Tickets for the awards go on sale on Friday at 9am from www.mobo.com and www.firstdirectarena.com.

THE MOBO Awards honour the biggest stars in urban music – and the organisation has played an instrumental role in elevating black music and culture to mainstream popular status in the UK.

Founded by Kanya King (pictured), the awards recognise the achievements of artists who perform music in genres ranging from Gospel, Jazz, RnB, Soul, Reggae to Hip Hop.

FKA twigs performing at the MOBOs in Leeds in 2015

FKA twigs performing at the MOBOs in Leeds in 2015

Tickets for the awards go on sale on Friday at 9am from www.mobo.com and www.firstdirectarena.com

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