Sunday 17th March –  Belfast Odyssey Arena (£35.50 / £27.50 Including booking fee)
Monday 18th March –  Dublin O2 Arena (€41.55/  €33.50 Euros Including booking fee)    

It’s been another whirlwind of a year so far for Jessie J who takes another step closer to world domination. Jessie has proven she is one of the hottest pop star’s on the planet right now having hit the #1 spot in 19 countries world-wide selling 11 million singles and over 2.5 million copies of her multi-platinum debut album ‘Who You Are’. In the UK alone Jessie has sold 1 million albums and secured two #1 singles with ‘Price Tag’ and ‘Domino’.

In February 2013 Jessie will be taking her phenomenal live show on the road for her first 12-date UK & Ireland arena tour. The tour will follow a string of summer festival appearances including Wireless, Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend, Isle of White, Ibiza and Mallorca Live, T in the Park and Capital FM’s Summertime Ball.

The Irish Leg of the tour sees Jessie perform in The Odyssey Arena Belfast on Sunday 17th March followed by Dublin 02 Arena on Monday 18th March. Tickets go on sale this Friday 25th May at 9am from Ticketmaster & all usual outlets

Jessie’s latest single ‘Laserlight’ featuring David Guetta smashed into the top 10 6 weeks ahead of release making it her 6th top ten UK single resulting her breaking UK chart history with the most top ten hits off one album. Jessie is the first UK solo artist to have achieved this feat, with only Take That’s 2010 album ‘Progress’ and Lady Gaga’s debut album Fame equalling such incredible chart success in the UK.

Early June sees the conclusion of Jessie’s success as a coach on the BBC’s primetime Saturday night talent show The Voice with Jessie also confirmed to take to the stage in Buckingham Palace for the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations alongside music legends Sir Paul McCartney & Sir Elton John.


Tuesday 26th February                        Nottingham at Capital FM Arena
Wednesday 27th February            Brighton Centre
Friday 1st March                        Birmingham LG Arena
Saturday 2nd March                        Manchester Arena
Sunday 3rd March                        Sheffield Motorpoint Arena
Tuesday 5th March                        Liverpool Echo Arena
Wednesday 6th March             Cardiff Motorpoint Arena
Thursday 7th March                        Bournemouth International Centre
Saturday 9th March                        London O2 Arena
Tuesday 12th March                        Newcastle Metro Radio Arena
Thursday 14th March                        Glasgow SECC
Friday 15th March                        Aberdeen AECC

Sunday 17th March                         Belfast Odyssey Arena
Monday 18th March                        Dublin O2 Arena


To purchase tickets

£35.50 / £27.50 Including booking fee
In person: From 100 Ticketmaster Outlets Nationwide
By Telephone (24 Hour):
ROI – 0818 719 300, Northern Ireland – 0844 277 44 55
Buy Online: <>


Looking for something to do on Sunday, 3rd June?

How about packing a picnic, gathering your family and friends and heading down to Bangor’s Castle Park to take part in The Jubilee Big Lunch? Set out the rug, relax and be entertained by the jazz tones of AJ Brown & The Swing Shift Big Band and the delightful Jacqui Dankworth in the beautiful surrounds of Bangor’s Town Hall.

Jahnassa Aicken and Jemma McCorry getting ready for The Jubilee Big Lunch on June 3rd in Bangor'€™s Castle Park.

The Lottery-funded Big Jubilee Lunch is part of the programme of events to celebrate The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, as announced by Buckingham Palace, and has Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall as its patron. Led by the Eden Project, the aim of The Big Jubilee Lunch is to encourage neighbourhoods to come together to share lunch and a few hours of community, friendship and fun. Last year the best part of two million people took part and this year record numbers are anticipated to join in.

Northern Ireland Big Lunch representative Gráinne McCloskey said: “We are delighted North Down Council made The Big Jubilee Lunch an integral part of their exciting extended Diamond Jubilee weekend celebrations. It’s hoped that hundreds of families will turn of the TV and come to Castle Park on Sunday 3rd June, bring a picnic, a rug and a willingness to chill out and have good old fashioned conversations and enjoy celebrating all that is good about where they live. The hope is that they will go on to have annual Big Lunches in their streets and local areas for years to come.”

So come along to Castle Park on June 3rd from 2pm, kick back, enjoy the atmosphere and the music and be part of this national initiative!

For further information, please phone our Tourist Information Centre on: 028 9127 0069 or visit or www.


The Railway Preservation Society of Ireland will be starting its mid-summer steam train season by offering people a unique and stylish way to travel to Bangor for the afternoon on Saturday 26th May.

Passengers on this year’s Bangor Belle Steam Train will be able to experience the thrill of steam train travel from the Titanic era.

Indeed, should you want to, this is an opportunity to let the steam train take you all the way from Whitehead Excursion Station, Carrickfergus, Belfast Central or Lisburn to Bangor and back again.  All the way around Belfast Lough where Titanic first sailed.

By offering a steam train – a unique and enjoyable means of travel – passengers, especially families, will be able to enjoy a few hours by the sea, without the hassle of traffic jams and car parking.

It is hoped that the locomotive at the head of the train will be No.461, built in Manchester and celebrating its 90th birthday this year.  It has only just returned to operation following an 11 year restoration, largely carried out by volunteers at the Society engineering workshops at Whitehead, County Antrim.  The Bangor Belle Steam Train will be its first public passenger train to Bangor.  It is sure to make plenty of steam locomotive noise as it tackles the steep climb from Holywood, through Cultra!

The train will offer passengers travel in lovingly restored carriages, the opportunity for children (and more nostalgic adults) to get close to the steam engine and talk to the driver and fireman and a relaxing journey through the North Down countryside to Bangor.

RPSI Operations Officer Mervyn Darragh commented: “We are pleased to offer this car-free means for passengers to travel to Bangor on a summer Saturday. The steam train works in perfectly; offering families time in Bangor for a walk, some shopping or even to sample some model steam trains at the First Bangor Model Railway Society exhibition for which ticket holders will get discounted admission.”

“We always enjoy helping the public and especially children to get closer to the industrial heritage we maintain. A steam train just oozes atmosphere and we would especially appreciate the public sending us drawings, notes or poems about their day out on the steam train for posting on our website.”

Departure times:

Whitehead RPSI Excursion Station 12:35
Carrickfergus 12:50
Belfast Central 13:20
Lisburn 14:25

Return departure from Bangor at 17:40

Tickets (Adult £14, Child £12) are available in person, by phone or on-line only

Belfast Welcome Centre
47 Donegall Place

+44 28 9024 6609

Advance ticket purchase IS essential!

A series of evening “Steam and Jazz” trains on 8th, 15th and 22nd June and 6th July, with the Apex Jazz Band on-board, make up the rest of the mid-summer steam train calendar.  Tickets are already on sale for these popular trains.

The May Fair returns to Ballyclare this week with an action packed programme for all the family to enjoy.

The the real fun of the fair is on Tuesday 22 May when the main street will be closed off for the horse trading fair and visitors can get a bargain from the market stalls around the town. Hugo Duncan will return again this year for a live concert broadcast, but younger talent will be on display in the evening at the Talent Show. There will also be amusements, pie making , bouncy castles and face painting to amuse children of all ages.

Then at nighttime the first ever Autotest Night will take place – come along and see the drivers challenge each other in a series of scary tricks and manoeuvres.

After the success of last year’s Comedy Night, May McFettridge & Gene Fitzpatrick are guaranteed to have everyone rolling the aisles of the town hall on Friday 25 May.

Saturday 26 May really will be a crowd pleaser as pirates and princesses is the theme for the parade, arts workshops and kids party and Mr. Hullaballoo will be telling the tales of Peter Pan and Sleeping Beauty. The toe-tapping sounds of buskers will fill the air around the town as they compete for the £1000 prize fund in the Big Busking Bonanza. In the evening, the Phat Katz will provide a free concert at Six Mile Leisure Centre before an amazing fireworks display at the Comrades grounds.

There’s plenty sport throughout the week, with the It’s a Knockout, soccer competition, dance competition and cricket blitz, as well as quiz nights, a talk on tracing your family history and the annual pet show.

So there’s lots of reasons to come to the May Fair this year – make a day of it and treat the family.

For more information  see or follow us on Facebook.


Some of the world’s greatest blues and jazz artists will be performing at the 14th Guinness® International Blues on the Bay Festival, as the line up for the five day event was launched at Narrow Water Castle today.

Maryam Ahmed pictured with Ian Sands at the Launch of the Blues on The Bay Festival , Warrenpoint Co Down. Picture Mark Pearce /Pearcemedia

Home to the annual Guinness International Blues on the Bay festival, the picturesque Warrenpoint will host Cream front man Jack Bruce and Jimi Hendrix’s brother Leon Hendrix who will headline the festival which takes place from the 24th to 28th May.

Performers from the USA, mainland Europe and GB will join home grown talent at the event which has developed into one of the world’s most popular blues festivals hosting over 90 gigs.

Paul Callan, Diageo Northern Ireland, said: “Everyone at Guinness is looking forward to the 14th Annual Guinness International Blues on the Bay Festival which promises to be the best programme yet.  Jazz and blues fans are passionate about music and what better way to celebrate the diversity and range of global talent than having many of the world’s best artists perform in the beautiful Warrenpoint.  This event continues to grow in stature with each festival year and along with other special events in Northern Ireland in 2012 it is helping to build momentum within our tourism sector, an area that we are passionate about and are committed to supporting.”

One of the main features of the festival weekend will be the famous ‘Guinness Bay Blues Pub Trail’, which will feature over 60 free gigs across the 5 days.  At these events audiences will be treated to a host of internationally acclaimed performers including Ex. Mama’s Boys; Pat McManus, Liverpool’s ‘Xander and the Peace Pirates’ and New York guitar ace; Chaz Depaolo.  Other stand out performers at the festival will include Jack Moore (son of guitar legend Gary Moore) Mirenda Rosenberg, Kathleen Pearson, Rab McCullough, and The Bluez Katz Blues Band.

Commenting on the programme, Event Director, Ian Sands said, “This year’s event will surpass all others with over 40 performers providing free high class blues to an international blues audience creating the essential ingredients for what will be a world class music event. Jack Bruce and his ‘Big Blues Band’ will perform in an all-new fully seated festival marquee in the majestic gardens of Narrow Water Castle, which is destined to be the gig of the year”

“With high profile events including a live Broadcast by BBC’s Ralph McLean on festival opening night, the 14th Annual International Guinness Blues on the Bay Festival 2012 is an unmissable event,” concluded Ian.

In addition to the international and local performers, budding blues musicians will have the opportunity to brush up on their musical skills or discover hidden talents with the popular ‘hands-on’ music workshops. The fun will also extend to the beautiful Edwardian town park where there will be band concerts, a 70-piece band and a food fest. The park entertainment is part of the all-new ‘Bluesberry’ event.

A former Northern Ireland Tourist Board ‘Event of the Year’ Award winner, the event attracts visitors from all over the world and continues to grow in footfall year on year.

Visit or call the ticket hotline 02890246609 for further details (Regular updates on Facebook).

Festival poster programme’s available from Newry and Mourne’s Tourist Offices or Belfast Welcome Centre to pick up a festival poster program.

The International Guinness Blues on the Bay Festival is supported by; Diageo, The Northern Ireland Tourist Board, Newry and Mourne District Council, United States Consulate, The Quays Newry, WBR Chamber of Commerce and P & O Irish Sea.

International World Music Day 21st June!

On the 21st June 2012, Northern Ireland will join with over 100 countries spread over five continents to celebrate Fête de la Musique, also known as World Music Day.

La Fête de la Musique, initiated in France in 1982, has remarkably spreading out around the world. This international event, dedicated to musical practice and live music in general, open to all kinds of audience is really unique.

The celebration is currently hosted in more than 110 countries and 430 cities, with various kinds of participants:

educational structures, cultural centres, diplomatic networks, city councils, local authorities, ministries for culture, associations, artists, music professionals, music schools. Those public and private organizers of World Music Day activities can show through this joint event their desire to foster the visibility of the current artistic realities of their countries and to enhance cultural exchanges.

Beyond Skin / World Music NI are coordinating events for Northern Ireland working in partnership with Love: Live Music (Ireland) in connection with Féte de la Musique (Paris).

Currently there are over 200 free scheduled to take place across the whole Isle and in Northern Ireland World Music Day will form part of Refugee Week in partnership with NICRAS

Confirmed events so far will be taking place in the City of Derry, Belfast and Newtownabbey and details will soon go online

If you wish to run an event / performance, please visit download and read carefully the Fête de la Musique principal’s document and send an email to with details of your event. Events can be on any scale from a singer in a bar to a concert in a school.

Tri to swim, cycle and run your way around Belfast

In an important Olympic sporting year for Northern Ireland, a new triathlon has been launched which will see 300 competitors swim, cycle and run their way around Belfast on Sunday July 1st.

The INTERSPORT Belfast Titanic Triathlon will take place in the heart of the city and is hoping to attract both novices and experienced athletes, with two different race distances catering for varying levels of fitness.

Organised by a number of Belfast triathlon and running clubs, the event is part of the Titanic Belfast Festival and was developed due to the surge in the popularity of this fast growing sport.  The race will also test the proposed course for the prestigious 2013 World Police and Fire Games.

The Triathlon Ireland sanctioned event takes place in sheltered open water within Belfast Harbour, on a flat and very fast cycle route and finishes with a multi-lap run along some of Belfast’s major city centre thoroughfares.

Competitors will travel through the heart of the city, around Custom House Square, Harbour Estate and City Centre, passing a number of historic sites and visitor attractions.

Belfast City Council is hoping to grow the race to become a permanent fixture on the city’s sporting calendar.

Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Niall Ó Donnghaile, said: “It is fantastic to see a new sporting event on the calendar in such a momentous year for our city. The Belfast Titanic Triathlon will give people a chance to experience sport in the heart of the city as well as allowing us to showcase Belfast – and all that it has to offer – to visiting competitors and their supporters.”

Race organiser Stuart Kennedy said, “Triathlon is a core Olympic sport which will feature prominently in London this summer, hopefully with two of our local elite athletes competing. As one of the fastest-growing sports in the UK and Ireland, we wanted to give everyone in Belfast and beyond the opportunity to get involved in an event in the heart of the city.

“Sports tourism has also grown rapidly in recent years with people travelling to participate in city centre events, so this will hopefully provide another great reason for visitors to experience Northern Ireland in 2012,” he continued.

“Places on the inaugural Belfast Titanic Triathlon are limited to 300 and there has already been incredible interest in the event so get your spot booked quickly to avoid disappointment,” Stuart added.

Tom Foley, General Manager of title sponsor INTERSPORT, said, “We recognise the growing popularity of the triathlon and are delighted to be supporting the INTERSPORT Belfast Titanic Triathlon. We’re hoping to encourage people of all abilities to come from near and far to take part in what will be a historic sporting event and a new highlight on Northern Ireland’s sporting calendar. It is an ideal opportunity to bring sport to the people.”

The event is supported by Belfast City Council and SportNI. In addition to INTERSPORT, the race has partnered with major local retailer SS Moore as official kit suppliers and received support from McConvey Cycles, training provider Springvale Learning and international swimwear brand Aqua Sphere.

This event is not just for the elite with many first-timers signed up to experience a challenging triathlon. To find out more information about the race and to register for the event visit

New Sounds – UO Launches New Season

The Ulster Orchestra, Northern Ireland’s only professional symphony orchestra, launched its 2012-2013 Season (17 May), a nine-month programme that sees the music of Beethoven, Verdi and Wagner rub shoulders with The Snowman and music from stage and screen.

Professor Sir George Bain, Chairman of the Ulster Orchestra, heralds the start of the Orchestra’s new 2012-2013 Season which he and Principal Conductor JoAnn Falletta launched yesterday at the Ulster Hall in Belfast.

The UO’s 47th Season includes the work of 30 composers across 40 main season and lunchtime concerts that will involve over 30 soloists, 20 conductors and two choirs – the Derry-based Codetta and Belfast Philharmonic Choir and, as Ulster Orchestra’s Chairman Professor Sir George Bain says, “63 of the finest musicians you will find anywhere in these islands”.

“It is an eclectic mix of popular, familiar, challenging, and inspiring music that we hope will appeal not only to our subscribers, but to people who come occasionally, or haven’t yet enjoyed a symphony orchestra in full flow,” he said.

The 2012-2013 Season will honour the centenary of Benjamin Britten’s birth and bicentenaries of Wagner and Verdi’s. The Season also includes two special Burns Night concerts and popular classics like Beethoven’s Ode to Joy, Holst’s The Planets and Handel’s Messiah; also a concert of Family Film Favourites, music from hit West End shows and a Wild Wild West film night.


Strictly dancers Camilla Dallerup and Ian Waite make a welcome return for the traditional New Year Viennese concerts and families can also enjoy a special 30th anniversary showing this Christmas of The Snowman with live orchestral accompaniment.

Roisín McDonough, Chief Executive of the Arts Council, the Ulster Orchestra’s principal funder, congratulated the Orchestra “for providing us once more with a spectacular season of inspiring symphony music. The programme shows how orchestral music is an essential ingredient in the rich and diverse tapestry of delights that the arts bring to local audiences and to our growing numbers of cultural visitors.”

In thanking all those who support and fund the Orchestra, Sir George said that the Arts Council invests a significant portion of its funding for music in the Orchestra and that was a huge responsibility for them and the Board of the Ulster Orchestra as well.

“I want to thank the Arts Council for its support; its continued recognition that a symphony orchestra is a crucial part of cultural life here, and the value it places on having a full-time professional symphony orchestra for Northern Ireland,” he said.

“We will need to do more with less, as these are tough times for everyone, but we welcome the Arts Council’s continued faith in us. We see ourselves as part of the community and are committed to bringing classical music to more people.”

Principal Conductor JoAnn Falletta said she is also looking forward to the new Season and working with the musicians, many of whom, like her, come from overseas. She also said that she is doing her bit to promote Northern Ireland by exporting the music of its finest composers back to her native United States.

The acclaimed New York conductor said, “Coming to Belfast has opened up a whole new world to me, especially the fantastic music of local Irish composers: composers such as Sir Hamilton Harty, Howard Ferguson and John Ernest Moeran. I want people in the US to enjoy these great treasures.”

As Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic and Virginia Symphony orchestras, she will conduct Harty’s Irish Symphony in Buffalo in the autumn of 2013 and Moeran’s Cello Concerto in Virginia during its 2013-2014 Season. She also has plans to conduct Howard Ferguson’s Piano Concerto in the United States.

“People in the US have not heard these composers yet, but are excited about hearing the sound of Northern Ireland. Many of our audience members tell me how much they want to visit Belfast to hear the Ulster Orchestra,” she added.

As JoAnn takes local classical music to American audiences, she is pleased that the Ulster Orchestra’s new Season includes a number of her classical music compatriots, composers such as John Adams, Aaron Jay Kernis and the great George Gershwin.

The Ulster Orchestra’s new Season opens on 14 September 2012. Ten days earlier, at the Season taster concert ‘Your Starter for 10!’ concertgoers can get a taste of what the Season has in store for just £10.

Tickets for the 2012-2013 Season go on sale on 18 July and range from £6-£28 and are available from or 028 9023 9955.

Bikers – ride yourself into the record books!

Belfast will see a world record attempt for the most number of makes and models of motorcycles in a single parade. The IAM Titanic World Record Challenge will take place on Friday 22 June.

Motorcyclists from road safety charity the IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) are inviting Ireland’s bikers to join them and ride their way into the record books. The current record is 138 makes and models at an event organised by the KillSpills Campaign in 2007.
The parade organised by the Quay Vipers Motorcycle Club, will assemble near the slipway where the world’s most famous ship Titanic was built and adjacent to the new iconic building and exhibition centre Titanic, Belfast. The attempt will follow a two-mile route to the City Hall and back again to the starting point for a bikers’ barbecue. The world record attempt will be started by local boxing hero Wayne Pocket McCullough, Olympic silver medallist and former WBC Bantamweight and Commonwealth champion.

Other sponsors of this event are Adelaide Insurance Services, Days Hotel, Stena Line and Bikesafe.
The record attempt will begin at 7pm and is part of a week-long tour of Britain and Ireland to raise awareness of road safety and money for charity.

IAM chief executive Simon Best said: “It doesn’t matter if you have a 1200cc Harley of a 50cc moped, we want to see as many two-wheelers as possible join us so that we smash the world record. It’s for a great cause and will also be a terrific night out. “
Riders can sign up for the world-record team here:


To mark 100 years since its sinking, one of Belfast’s most prominent playwrights, Martin Lynch, turns his attention to the legendary Titanic story.

The Titanic Boys, tells the true, untold story of nine young Harland & Wolff men who uniquely built, sailed and died on the RMS Titanic.

Two weeks before the Titanic sailed, designer Thomas Andrews walked into the four main trade workshops at Harland and Wolff and asked each foreman to name his best apprentice. When the bosses nominated four young men, Andrews informed the stunned apprentices they were joining himself and four senior tradesmen to sail on Titanic’s maiden voyage to New York as members of the H&W Guarantee Group.

The Titanic Boys brings the Titanic story back to where it all began – Belfast. Heart-warming and heart-breaking, this story of nine men who knew the Titanic better than anyone else in the world is truly remarkable. Laced with Lynch’s renowned capacity for capturing Belfast character and humour, this is one not to be missed!

The Titanic Boys opens at the Grand Opera House on Wednesday 8th August and runs until Saturday 25th August. Ticket prices start at £12 and can be purchased via telephone on 9024 1919, online at or in person at the theatre’s Box Office.

See a clip from the exclusive preview here, thanks to Discover NI