2021 – Sir Elton John personally phoned Olly Alexander to ask him to perform ‘It’s A Sin’ at the BRIT Awards.
The duo performed their single ‘It’s A Sin’, which has been released in support of Elton’s AIDs Foundation, at the annual music awards ceremony on Tuesday (11.05.21) and when Elton called, the Years and Years star was quick to oblige and agree to the performance.
Speaking to the Daily Star newspaper’s Wired column, he said: “Elton phoned me and asked if I would be up for doing a special performance for the BRITs. When I was on stage with him, I thought back to being a little kid watching him at the BRIT Awards and I thought, ‘I just can’t believe I’m doing this.'”
Ahead of the performance, Elton’s husband David Furnish gave a moving speech in which he compared the HIV and AIDs crisis in 1981 to the current COVID-19 pandemic.
He said: “When a new virus broke out in 2020, the whole world reacted immediately. Governments took action, cities closed down, scientists created vaccines, and we all talked about it night and day. Quite rightly, given the pain and suffering which has been reaped on so many people the world over. But when the same thing happened in 1981, there was silence. That was the year HIV arrived, but people with HIV and AIDs were treated with ignorance, fear, shame, and stigma.
“That silence allowed AIDs to grow into the greatest disease affecting our planet. But we fought back. Campaigners and activists and allies shouted down the silence and demanded to be heard. We refused to let men, women, and children die in shame, and by fighting together, we’ve changed the world.”