Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 23 September 2014

11,000 seek tickets for Derry concert with a capacity of 2,000

A staggering 11,300 people have applied for tickets for the upcoming Sons and Daughters concert in Londonderry, the official launch gig of the UK City of Culture celebrations.

This is expected to result in widespread disappointment as there are just 2,000 places available, and as the allocation is completely random there is no guarantee local people will even get a ticket.

The concert will feature a musical line-up of sons and daughters of Derry who’ve been successful globally.

The deadline to apply for the free tickets passed on Friday, and the draw for successful applicants is expected to take place over the next two days.

Those who have been successful will be notified by the weekend. However, as the event has being organised by the BBC and the application process for tickets was restricted to BBC licence payers only, people from neighbouring Donegal were automatically excluded.

This has already prompted queries to the City of Culture Facebook page from residents in Donegal who asked why people from the Republic of Ireland were not allowed to apply for tickets and if this was going to be the case for similar events.

It is understood that the exclusion of people from Donegal is a concern for the Culture Company and moves are under way to make sure this is rectified for future events.

A final line-up of artists performing at The Venue in Ebrington on January 20 will be revealed on Monday, with Phil Coulter, The Undertones, Damian McGinty, Paul Brady, Amanda Burton and Dana already confirmed.

BBC Northern Ireland director Peter Johnston said: “We are very excited to be part of Sons and Daughters as the opening concert to mark the start of Derry/Londonderry UK City of Culture.

“The BBC is planning a number of major events and programmes across the year and it is great to begin with such a prestigious occasion as we host a special evening of music and celebration.”

Mayor of Derry Kevin Campbell said the Sons and Daughters concert was a great opportunity to share the city’s success and showcase local talent: “Our city is renowned for its excellent musical and cultural talent and we are delighted to offer the public the chance to see the city’s most loved musicians and performers come together in their home town for a free concert.”

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