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Review: Books, Theatre, Movies, Albums & Gigs.

European Capital Of Culture Launch

The Liverpool Echo Arena
January 4th, 2008

Image link: Click here to visit the Echo Arena in Liverpool website.

Liverpool, 2008: European Capital of Culture starts here and what a big, spectacular year it promises it promises to be. Judging by The Echo Arena alone, it certainly promises to be special.

“Its so nice to be in a Liverpool building big enough to echo that isn’t Saint George’s Hall,” quipped Phil Redmond at this, the launch of Liverpool’s biggest year and the opening of its newest, brightest and much needed auditorium.

click above to visit The Liverpool Echo Arena official website

Seating 10,600 and with the adjoining BT Convention Centre next door holding a further 1,350, The Echo Arena is an impressive addition to the city landscape, picked out from afar in pale purple lighting that add a sense of warmth and atmosphere immediately.

Image: The Echo Arena Liverpool - inside viewIt also has the clearest acoustics imaginable, unlike other vast auditoriums, and is amongst the greenest in the country. So green, in fact, the toilets use rainwater to flush and the building has its own wind farm for energy saving purposes: a feature that on this stormy night must have been working in over-drive.

Although this was the first public event to be staged here, this was really a thank you to the 8,500 ambassadors and volunteers invited free of charge to sample the atmosphere before working tirelessly throughout 2008 to ensure European Capital of Culture year is the success it deserves to be.


The year has three main objectives. The headline events will raise awareness of Liverpool. The People’s Opening takes place at Saint George’s Plateau on January 11 at 20:08 hrs.  Featuring 100 musicians performing on the rooftops of Liverpool City Centre amidst a pyrotechnic and firework display and featuring many famous names including The Wombats, Liverpool’s famous architecture will be transformed in spectacular style during this free event.  

Liverpool – The Musical takes place at The Echo Arena including appearances by Ringo Starr, Echo and the Bunnymen, Dave Stewart, Ian Broudie and Pete Wylie takes place this Saturday (January 12) and will be quickly followed by The Number One Project, where a galaxy of stars will be coming together for a spectacular concert celebrating the fact that Liverpool has had more number one hit singles than any other city in the world – 56 number one singles over the last 50 years.

The second strand of the year is to build the city’s reputation beyond 08, with existing events such Mathew Street and The Liverpool Irish festival featuring prominently. Thirdly there is the continued support of Community projects offering opportunities for all artists to get involved and to add to Liverpool’s already burgeoning cultural heritage.

“When Liverpool was being ignored throughout the world, it was the city’s artists, writers and musicians that kept it on the world map,” Phil Redmond said. “As European Capital of Culture 2008, the city can proudly show it is back where it belongs … at the summit of a very large mountain.”

With The Farm getting people on their feet to close this evening’s event with the iconic All Together Now, it is a year to look forward to with hope and expectation.

“Liverpool’s waited a long, long time for this and finally it’s here,” DJ Pete Price said. “It really is something for Liverpool and its people to be proud of.”

For Details Of The Echo Arena:
For European Capital of Culture Events Listings:



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“Writing gets me away for a while' from this world and into one where I, alone, can make or
break the rules as I see fit.” - Chris High 2003.
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