Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Summer of music rocks city

Pop lovers in Belfast are gearing up for one of their busiest times of the year with a series of big names heading to the city over the next few months.

Kicking off a hectic run of shows at the Odyssey Arena will be poptastic five-piece Girls Aloud, who bring their Tangled Up tour to Belfast for three dates.

The record-breaking band, featuring Northern Ireland's own Nadine Coyle, will play the Odyssey on May 3, 4 and 5.

The following week the Backstreet Boys will play their debut Ulster gig at the Odyssey, with a show on May 12.

The US band, who have sold more than 75 million albums worldwide, have played Dublin in the past but never made it to perform north of the border until now.

On Sunday, May 25, the recently reformed Irish band Boyzone kick off their reunion tour at the same venue.

The five lads, who haven't played together in seven years, will also play Belfast on Monday, May 26, as part of their Back Again: No Matter What tour.

Lead singer Ronan Keating said he couldn't think of anywhere better to start their tour than the Odyssey and that the band members were all undergoing strict personal training to ensure they were in the best shape possible for the rigorous shows.

Westlife, who can't get enough of the arena, are back again on May 27 and May 28.

The boys added on another two shows in Belfast after playing three sell-out shows at the Arena earlier this year.

Pop Idol heart-throb Shayne Ward returns to the city with an Odyssey date on May 29.

For those not too keen on pop music, the Viva La Diva show comes to Belfast on May 2, featuring ballerina Darcey Bussell and operatic superstar Katherine Jenkins, while Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler plays the Odyssey on May 20.

Elsewhere megastar Bruce Springsteen brings his E Street band to the RDS in Dublin on May 22, 23 and 25.

June is shaping up to be an equally bumper period for gigs, with Dolly Parton and Avril Lavigne also lined up for the Odyssey, while Kylie fans are looking forward to her highly anticipated return to Northern Ireland on June 26, 27 and 29.

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