Prince gig ends fans' uncertainty

Prince announced a last-minute gig in London

Pop royalty Prince is to play London's Shepherd's Bush O2 Empire, ending days of uncertainty for fans of the Purple Rain singer.

The multi-instrumentalist announced the Saturday night show through his 3RDEYEGIRL backing band, when they appeared on BBC Radio 6 Music shortly before midday on Saturday.

Prince arrived in the UK earlier this month ahead of an "open-ended" series of gigs at "iconic venues in and around London".

But after a secret "sound-check" gig on Tuesday at Camden's Electric Ballroom - in which he played to little more than 150 people - and two full-length sets at the same venue the following night, talk of further performances went quiet.

The news vacuum prompted rumour and counter-rumour that the chart-topping star was playing capital venues such as Ronnie Scott's jazz bar and the 100 Club, as well as legendary Liverpool hang-out The Cavern Club.

But the latest announcement brought an end to that wait.

Within an hour of the gig being publicised, throngs of people had begun queuing outside Shepherd's Bush.

Doors open at 7pm, with the gig expected to start at 8pm.

Tickets are expected to cost around £10, but eager fans in the queue said they were expecting to pay as much as £70.

There has been no confirmation of how long Prince will play for, or whether he will perform twice tonight.

His latest single, PretzelBodyLogic, was released this week. Early indications suggested the track would not trouble the Top 100, though an internet campaign mobilised by an army of fans is expected to have helped improve its position.

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