Ed Sheeran gives local unsigned acts chance to perform at his homecoming gigs

Pop star Ed Sheeran is giving three local unsigned acts the chance to perform in front of crowds of up to 45,000 people at his homecoming gigs in Ipswich.

The 28-year-old, who grew up in Framlingham, Suffolk, will play four shows in his home county in August.

Support acts confirmed for the shows are Lewis Capaldi, Passenger and The Darkness, with the unsigned acts from in and around Suffolk to open the first three nights of the gigs.

Lewis Capaldi
Lewis Capaldi

The singer-songwriter, who will perform at Chantry Park on August 23 to 26, has asked BBC Introducing in Suffolk to nominate a trio of artists.

He received support from the radio show, which is broadcast on BBC Radio Suffolk, in the early stages of his career.

Angelle Joseph and Richard Haugh, who present the show, will make their selections from local acts who have submitted their music via the BBC Introducing Uploader.

Mr Haugh said: “This is an incredibly generous gesture from Ed, whose act of kindness will mean the world to the three artists chosen.

“To be offered a slot alongside one of the biggest acts in the world, returning to his home patch, will be something they will cherish for the rest of their lives.”

The opening act for the fourth night of the Ipswich dates will be chosen by local skateboard company Hoax, which credits Ed Sheeran as a brand ambassador, via a national battle of the bands competition.

The three unsigned acts will be chosen from artists from in and around Suffolk who have submitted their music to the BBC Uploader by July 4 at www.bbc.com/introducing/uploader