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Capacity boost for AMG’s revamped O2 City Hall

Academy Music Group (AMG) has breathed new life into O2 City Hall Newcastle following a significant revamp.

The 95-year-old venue has benefited from a brand-new, state-of-the-art retractable seating system, major restoration works and enhancements in house sound and lighting production.

The multi-functional auditorium has increased its capacity from 2,135 to 2,600, while also offering a 2,000-cap fully seated option with improved comfort and sightlines.

“When we acquired O2 City Hall Newcastle back in May 2019, we knew that it needed significant adjustments to reinstate it to its former glory and get it firmly back on the schedule for major touring acts” says AMG’s chief operating officer Graham Walters.

“It’s a stunning room, one that has seen the biggest names in rock and pop over the last four decades. Investment in modern facilities – including the option to have an all-standing auditorium – had to be on the agenda to offer a flexible space, as well as keeping a seated configuration. This way, we can hugely extend the variety of live music and events to tour in Newcastle and make sure we preserve its future for people and the community to enjoy for generations to come.”

“We’re thrilled to be part of this next phase in the venue’s story”

Opened in 1927, the Grade-II-listed venue is one of Newcastle’s first dedicated concert venues, which also houses an original Harrison & Harrison organ. As part of its revamp, AMG has also installed new additional toilets and refurbished the basement bar and a new extra bar area at balcony level, as well as a brand-new LED ceiling-lighting system in the main auditorium, plus a significant investment in a full production install of PA and stage lighting systems.

“This development paves the way for many more iconic performances to take the stage at O2 City Hall Newcastle,” adds Gareth Griffiths, director of partnerships and sponsorship for Virgin Media O2. “We’re thrilled to be part of this next phase in the venue’s story.”

Upcoming shows at the venue include Florence + The Machine, Paul Weller, Foals, Keith Urban, Gary Numan, Michael Kiwanuka, Roget Daltrey, The Prodigy, Ian Brown, Kaiser Chiefs, Sigrid and Placebo.

O2 City Hall Newcastle is part of AMG’s portfolio of venues across the UK, which includes London’s O2 Academy Brixton and O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire, among others.

AMG has also enlisted the support of Liverpool-based Adlib to co-design and install a high-end touring specification for its audio and lighting systems at the 3,000-cap O2 Academy Edinburgh, its newest Scottish venue

 


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Green light for new Cardiff arena plans

Construction of Live Nation and Oak View Group’s (OVG) new arena in Cardiff, UK is expected to start later this year after the development was granted planning permission.

The 17,000-cap venue, which is set to open in 2025, will form part of a wider multi-million-pound regeneration of Butetown, Cardiff in Wales.

The venue is being developed by Robertson Group with a view to bringing “some of the biggest names in the entertainment industry” to the city and cementing Cardiff Bay’s position as a “top-tier” visitor attraction.

“We are delighted with this decision, one of the most significant and landmark developments in the region for some years, and we look forward to delivering our vision for a new arena with our partners and Cardiff Council,” says Graham Walters, Live Nation UK Venues COO. “A world-class arena, with a global reputation for culture, will transform Atlantic Wharf for local, national, and international visitors to Cardiff, as well as facilitate job creation and economic growth in the region.”

“We are now looking forward to working together with our partners and the local community to give Cardiff and Wales the top tier arena they deserve”

Live Nation already runs the existing 7,500-cap Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, as well as converted warehouse venue Titan Warehouse. OVG, meanwhile, is currently constructing the UK’s first all-electric arena, Co-op Live, in Manchester.

“It is exciting that the plans for a new arena at Atlantic Wharf have been approved by the council,” adds OVG COO Mark Donnelly. “We are now looking forward to working together with our partners and the local community to give Cardiff and Wales the top tier arena they deserve.”

Phase One of the development formed part of a hybrid planning application that was submitted in November 2021 and has now been approved by Cardiff’s Planning Committee.

Both the arena and the wider masterplan are in line with Cardiff Council’s 2030 climate neutral aspirations, with energy strategies incorporated into the design and operational elements of the redevelopment set to achieve operational climate neutral positions by 2030.

 


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Plans submitted for new Cardiff arena

A hybrid planning application has been submitted for the proposed new 17,000-capacity arena in Cardiff.

Operated by Live Nation and Oak View Group (OVG), the venue will form part of a wider multi-million-pound regeneration of Butetown, Cardiff. Determination of the planning decision is expected in spring 2022, with the arena set to open in 2025.

Set to create 1,000 jobs, the venue is being developed by Robertson Group with a view to cementing Cardiff Bay’s position as a “top-tier” visitor attraction and bring “the world’s best events” to the city. If planning is granted, it is anticipated that work will start in autumn 2022.

“As a leader in live entertainment, our aim is to deliver a new kind of arena in partnership with Cardiff City Council that will place the local community and the city at the heart of our ambition” says Live Nation UK venues chief operating officer Graham Walters.

“With a globally recognised arena as a focal point for entertainment and culture, we aspire to strengthen Cardiff’s position as a major touring destination, that is capable of hosting outstanding local, national and international events and continue Cardiff’s growth as a leading music city.”

We see a huge opportunity to bring a genuinely world-class arena to Cardiff

Live Nation already runs the existing 7,500-cap Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, as well as converted warehouse venue Titan Warehouse. OVG, meanwhile, is currently constructing the UK’s first all-electric arena, Co-op Live, in Manchester.

Jessica Koravos, chair, OVG International, adds: “We see a huge opportunity to bring a genuinely world-class arena to Cardiff – a venue that will host the best in live entertainment, creating thousands of jobs and attracting millions of visitors to the city.

“We look forward to working with the council and the community to deliver this exciting and ambitious scheme.”

The development of the arena and the wider masterplan takes into consideration the 2030 climate neutral aspirations of Cardiff Council, with the energy strategy designed to achieve an operational climate neutral position by 2030.

 

 


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