Celebrating 10 years at the Waterfront
In sports terms, there can be no doubt about which is Ireland's premier venue. The entertainment equivalent of Croke Park, though, is rather harder to identify.
When it comes to classical music, I reckon we've three contenders. The top of my chart are the University Concert Hall in Limerick, the first custom-built concert hall in Ireland when it opened 14 years ago; the Mahony Hall at the Helix in Dublin; and the biggest of them all, and an absolutely wonderful auditorium, the 2,250-seater Waterfront Hall in Belfast.
Last weekend, the Waterfront celebrated its 10th anniversary with a scintillating concert. It was on Friday January 17, 1997 that the main hall hosted its first symphony concert. It featured the Ulster Orchestra with two local musical heroes - James Galway, and Barry Douglas.