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Belfast SSE Arena launches intimate 'theatre format' for fans to get closer to the show

Published 15/12/2015

Neil Walker, General Manager, and Lisa McAnally, Event Manager at The SSE Arena, Belfast.
Neil Walker, General Manager, and Lisa McAnally, Event Manager at The SSE Arena, Belfast.

Belfast's SSE Arena is inviting fans to get closer to the music by introducing a new 'theatre format' to downsize capacity at certain shows.

The venue has launched Theatre at the SSE Arena, a draped and enclosed format which turns it in to a smaller intimate capacity for 3,500 visitors.

Capacity can be increased as demand requires.

The venue which first opened its doors in 2000 was formerly known as The Odyssey Arena and has been re-branded as The SSE Arena, Belfast in a 10 year naming rights deal with energy provider SSE Airtricity.

The arena which at full capacity holds 11,000 people - hopes this will enable a wider range of music concerts, comedy acts, musicals and awards shows to be showcased.

The theatre format was trialled throughout 2015 but the SSE Arena has now invested to bring Theatre style shows to the Arena on a regular basis.

In the coming year, more acts will play in this format, including The Johnny Cash Roadshow, The Magic of Motown, Big Girls Don’t Cry and ‘The King is Back’ with Ben Portsmouth as Elvis.

General manager of The SSE Arena Belfast, Neil Walker said: “When we first considered opening a theatre format we carried out a lot of market research and discovered that Northern Ireland was missing a venue which could cater for acts who would like to play for 1,500 – 3,500 people.

"Some shows work best in a more intimate venue and we will now be able to bring them to Belfast and offer our customers even more choice.

“Our Theatre format aims to bring our audiences closer to the acts while also giving them the same great atmosphere they expect from the Arena."

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