Thursday 20 June 2019

'Ecstatic, emotional' - Westlife hail first comeback concert

  

The boys are back: Westlife’s Kian Egan, Shane Filan, Nicky Byrne and Mark Feehily performing at the SSE Arena, Belfast, last night. Picture: Mark Condren
The boys are back: Westlife’s Kian Egan, Shane Filan, Nicky Byrne and Mark Feehily performing at the SSE Arena, Belfast, last night. Picture: Mark Condren

Eugene Masterson

Westlife said they were "ecstatic" and "emotional" as they kicked off their comeback tour with their first concert together in seven years.

The boyband - Kian Egan, Nicky Byrne, Mark Feehily and Shane Filan - recently reunited after splitting in 2012 and performed at Belfast's SSE Arena last night.

Speaking immediately after the performance, they said: "We genuinely missed each other and missed the buzz of performing on stage together. It is incredible to be back.

"The Belfast crowd were unbelievable. We're ecstatic and we loved every minute of it. It was emotional at times, too. It was amazing to see everyone singing along to our new music and other hits."

Broadcaster Jonathan Ross was among the crowd at last night's show. The 'World Of Our Own' singers will be on the road with their Twenty Tour throughout June, July and August. The tour has sold almost 700,000 tickets - a record for the band.

Westlife said: "We're going to give the fans the best tour we have ever done.

"We are giving everyone the best version of ourselves. This is the best job in the world."

Meanwhile, two of the Spice Girls arrived at Dublin Airport yesterday afternoon in the lead-up to the band's opening night of their world tour at Croke Park tomorrow.

Melanie Brown and Melanie Chisholm - Mel B and Mel C - arrived on a British Airways flight just before 3pm.

Read more: 'This is the best job in the world' - Westlife return to the stage after seven year hiatus as tour kicks off in Belfast 

'Baby Spice' Emma Bunton and 'Ginger Spice' Geri Horner were also expected in the city to rehearse today. The quartet are believed to be staying in the InterContinental Hotel in Ballsbridge.

Mel B - known as 'Scary Spice' - earlier posted a picture at London's Heathrow airport of herself and 'Sporty Spice' Mel C before their departure for Dublin.

"Me and @melaniecmusic have arrived just now at the airport in proper "spice girl spirit" I even had a sleep over at sportys [sic] last night yipppee we are soooo on time it's killing me," she wrote.

Victoria Beckham has opted out of performing on the new tour. More than 75,000 fans are expected to descend on Croke Park for the band's first Irish gig in 21 years.

Organisers predict the concert will generate more than €40m for the capital's economy, and they will be the first female pop group to headline at GAA HQ.

Tomorrow's concert, which has support by Jess Glynne, is due to kick off at 8.15pm and due to finish close to 10.45pm.

Dublin has been a buzz of showbiz happenings, as last night Mariah Carey played the 3 Arena. Sam Smith has also been mysteriously spotted in and around Dún Laoghaire and there has been speculation he may be going to the Spice Girls' gig.

Read more: Ginger nuts and Sporty types: meet the Spice Girls superfans

Mel B and Mel C touch down in Dublin ahead of Spice Girls world tour kicking off at Croke Park 

Irish Independent

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