The launch of the brand-new digital entertainment experience, Live from the Ulster Hall was certainly a highlight for one of Belfast’s most iconic venues, in what had been a difficult year for the live events industry.
From welcoming over 300,000 people through the doors around the festive season to silent entrances and hallways, continues to act as a stark reminder of the memories of concerts past and emotional connections made over the years in the venues.
In December, the Ulster Hall was alive for the first time since March 2020 with the sound of incredible homegrown talent. Live from the Ulster Hall, proudly supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Department for Communities brought joy to many households across the world this Christmas. Over 13,000 people from around the globe, including the Australia, Japan, Qatar, South Africa, Netherlands and many more, tuned into their favourite concerts from the comfort and safety of their sofa, to bring a touch of home to their corner of the world for the night.
‘We are so grateful to the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Department for Communities with the funding to allow us to bring the Ulster Hall to life again. Being able to provide a platform for homegrown talent to expand their reach to a global audience was certainly a highlight in what had been a difficult year for the industry.’ – Ashleigh Davidson, Head of Entertainment and Exhibitions at Waterfront Hall and Ulster Hall
The New Irish Arts’ Ireland in Christmas Praise concert kicked off the new innovative digital series with a wonderful performance from the New Irish Choir, Orchestra and Youth Choir. Usually a firm favourite in the festive calendar for many people, Jonathan Rea and his team were able to share favourite moments from previous years and the new video of 'O come, all ye faithful' recorded on zoom from many different locations across the world. Viewers enjoyed the incredible guest soloists Andrew Peterson, Keith and Kristyn Getty, Sylvia Burnside and fantastic young cellist, Evie Mills.
Also on the line up of Live from the Ulster Hall was one of Northern Ireland’s biggest and brightest talents. Ryan McMullan took to the stage to perform for fans and gave a little teaser for what to expect from his much-anticipated gig in the Waterfront Hall in November 2021.
‘The Ulster Hall is the Mecca of Northern Irish venues and to get to play here again, albeit without a crowd, will be like a balm soothing my soul after the year our industry has had.’ – Ryan McMullan
The Shamrock Tenors closed the Live from the Ulster Hall series with their fantastic music that no doubt had everyone at home on their feet dancing and singing along.
‘An extraordinary evening, thank you so much!’ – Ireland in Christmas Praise viewer