Expect To Hear Lots More Buskers In Tube Stations Over The Next 2 Weeks

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Expect To Hear Lots More Buskers In Tube Stations Over The Next 2 Weeks
A young woman puts a coin in a violinist's case
280 musicians are auditioning in selected stations across the tube network. Image: Eleanor Bentall/TfL

Expect to hear lots more buskers on the Underground over the next two weeks.

For the first time since the pandemic, TfL is auditioning some 280 musicians for the chance to join the ranks of 200 or so buskers who are already strumming/plucking/bashing their stuff on the network. It is essentially, the X Factor of the London Underground, with each 10-minute slot presided over by a panel featuring a professional musician and station staff (not to mention an audience of thousands of passing commuters). So far as we're aware, however, the panel will not sit on swivel chairs, and pivot a la Tom Jones on The Voice.

A panel watching a busker perform
One of these people looks a lot like Seal. We doubt Seal will be at every audition. Image: John Zammit/TfL

The auditions are playing out at Bank, Blackfriars, Canary Wharf, Farringdon and Southwark stations at a rate of about 30 per day, so if you're passing through, you may well get a blast of one of the musicians who'll be frequenting one of more than 40 designated pitches across the Underground, Overground and Elizabeth line later this year.

Emma Strain, TfL's Customer Director, says: "In a diverse, multicultural city like London, music truly is a common language. As Londoners pass through our stations and go about their busy lives, it has the power to cheer them on during the good times and lift them up in their lower moments."

Last Updated 29 February 2024

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