Glastonbury 2023 has broken previous digital audience records for viewing and listening on the BBC – with content streamed a record 50.3m times across BBC iPlayer and BBC Sounds to date – up 47% on 2022.
On BBC iPlayer, viewers streamed sets and Glastonbury programming from Worthy Farm a record 47.5 million times, up 49% on the year before. And on BBC Sounds, listeners played Glastonbury content 2.8m times, up 26% on the previous year.
On BBC iPlayer, the Glastonbury live channel proved the most popular – with Sunday, when Sir Elton John headlined the Pyramid Stage, topping the charts after it was streamed 4.3m times. Saturday’s live channel came second, with 3.8m streams, Friday’s live channel third with 3.2m streams – and live coverage from the Pyramid and The Other Stage followed with 2.1m and 1.9m streams respectively.
On BBC Sounds, Zoe Ball – Live from Worthy Farm topped the list with its brilliant mix of special content including live performances from Texas and Olivia Dean, chats with Fatboy Slim, Basil Brush and Glastonbury’s Emily Eavis, and Joe Wicks leading a workout for the team on site and listeners at home. This was followed by Dermot O’Leary – Live from Glastonbury, Radio 1 Dance, Jo Whiley – Live from Glastonbury and Craig Charles: The Farm before the Storm.
Lorna Clarke, Director of Music said: “This year audiences got to enjoy an unbeatable range of performances from this iconic festival wherever and whenever they wanted to. It’s fantastic that record numbers streamed our content – a whopping 50.3m times on BBC iPlayer and BBC Sounds – as people got to witness the range and breadth of what took place at Worthy Farm over the weekend. From headliner sets to live shows and specially curated content, our new Glasto-Cam and the BSL stream, we had something for everyone, brilliantly brought to audiences by our skilful teams. Glastonbury on the BBC doesn’t stop when the festival gates close, and viewers can still enjoy BBC iPlayer’s Glastonbury Channel – which continues until Friday 30 June – along with over 90 sets that will be available on demand for the coming weeks.”
This year on BBC iPlayer, BBC’s famous Glastonbury webcam launched as a soundtracked live stream, and for the first time ever, performances on the Pyramid Stage were streamed live in British Sign Language. Glastonbury’s Greatest Hits – back-to-back iconic performances from past festivals, streamed 24 hours a day, and the hugely successful Glastonbury Channel on BBC iPlayer returned with presenters bringing live sets, performance highlights and interviews with special guests to viewers. Audiences were also able to move between continuous live streams from the five main festival stages and watch the Pyramid Stage in Ultra HD.
On BBC Sounds, Clara Amfo, Jack Saunders and Jo Whiley ranked all-time classic Glastonbury moments in Glastonbury Top 10 podcast, and Glastonbury Daily Playlist charted a collection of live tracks performed by artists on the previous day. A range of BBC Radio’s shows broadcast live from Worthy Farm with special editions.
The digital figures follow the news that a record 21.6m people, over a third of the UK population, watched the BBC’s Glastonbury TV coverage with over 40 hours of linear programming available to audiences. The audience was up 7% on last year across linear television.
Elton John’s headline set on Sunday night on BBC One received the biggest ever overnight audience for a Glastonbury set with a 5 min peak overnight audience of 7.6m and average of 7.3m/48.9% share.
Following a recent multi-year extension, the BBC is Glastonbury Festival’s exclusive, multimedia broadcast partner. This year there was more live coverage than ever before with a record number of hours on BBC One and more programming in the lead up, including an updated version of Glastonbury: 50 Years and Counting, plus further content to discover on BBC Sounds and BBC iPlayer, with scale and discovery at the heart of the BBC’s Glastonbury coverage. The BBC delivered over 40 hours of linear coverage across its TV channels, 85 hours of live radio broadcasts, content on BBC Sounds, and an increase in scale and accessibility on BBC iPlayer, with even more themed and live streams. And for the first time, the BBC streamed the Pyramid Stage performances live in British Sign Language, making our coverage more accessible than ever before. BBC