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Russell Crowe‘s Glastonbury set is the most brilliantly bonkers moment of the weekend

An actual Oscar winner! On the Acoustic Stage!

By Nick Reilly

Russell Crowe at Glastonbury (Picture: Aaron Parsons Photography)

As the saying goes: throw a pint at Glastonbury this year and there’s every chance it’ll end up hitting Paul Mescal on the bonce. Look, we definitely don’t condone that behaviour and we’ve definitely made up that saying. But you get the point, right? Worthy Farm is practically crawling with A-Listers doing their best to stay incognito and enjoy their weekend without a sea of selfies.

Which means, consequently, it’s a rare thing to see one front and centre and onstage as an actual, well, performer. Step forward, then, actual Russell Crowe to deliver one of the most surreal and bonkers moments of the weekend.

In one of the most unique sets we’ve seen this Glastonbury, the Antipodean Oscar winner delivers an Acoustic Stage set that flips between the surreal, the touching and the straight up David Brent.

The latter, in particular, comes as he performs a song called ‘Southampton’ and speaks of planning to meet a woman who was “at least three or four decades” younger than him in Paris, but she eventually ended up in Southampton. It’s an unintentionally hilarious anecdote, while his subsequent admission that “Southampton is never mentioned in the list of the top 500 places you have to visit while you are still alive” feels positively Partridge.

As for his voice? Well that’s the surreal part of it all. It’s a curious bluesy croon of a thing that you wouldn’t necessarily expect to emerge from the man AKA Maximus Decimus Meridius. This is best displayed late on during a cover of Dire Straits’ ‘Romeo and Juliet’ – which gets the tent primed for a silly singalong.

Russell Crowe at Glastonbury 2024 (Picture: Aaron Parsons Photography)

There’s time for stories too, best exemplified by a self-penned country song which comes packed with a yarn about how his awards room at home also plays host to a letter he received from Johnny Cash after the Man In Black watched Gladiator. “I looked at this letter and thought – am I writing this for you?” he admits. It’s a sweet moment, as is his story about an emotional trip to Rome with mother shortly after his father’s death.

It would be easily and understandable to baulk at this being a classic actor’s vanity project – and we must admit that not all the songs land in the way he’d have possibly hoped. But for the most part however, this brilliantly bonkers set conjures up the kind of random magic that only Glastonbury is capable of.

You can check back here for all of Rolling Stone UK’s Glastonbury content over the weekend.