Historically, the North East has created a wealth of diverse musical talent and the City Centre site already had a musical heritage. Originally built as a Picture House (The New Westgate) in 1927, it was once the legendary Majestic Ballroom, famed for a performance by The Beatles in 1963, who went on to write their biggest selling UK hit, ‘She Loves You’ after the show! As well as The Beatles, The Moody Blues, The Kinks, Spencer Davis Group, The Hollies, Van Morrison and the Small Faces are just a few other famous names that graced the Majestic Ballroom stage.
AMG announced the successful acquisition of the former Gala Bingo Hall on Westgate Road in April 2005 and a £4m total refurbishment of the site took place to create a magnificent near 2,000 capacity auditorium. Academy Music Group opened O2 Academy Newcastle on Friday 14th October 2005 with an exclusive, sell-out live performance by The Futureheads, plus support from fellow locals, Field Music and Kubichek!
O2 Academy Newcastle has retained the original ceiling features, stairways, stage and balcony creating a dramatic and atmospheric space to present to major artists and AMG has invested heavily in its production equipment to offer high quality, professional, in-house services as standard. The venue also has the capability to become an ‘all seated’ format as an alternative arrangement for varied shows and events.
The 400 capacity O2 Academy2 Newcastle is a stand-alone gig venue and also acts as a second room for club nights and dance events. It is perfect for showcasing new talent from the local area and breaking new acts on the touring circuit.
With a legendary ‘up-for-it’ crowd, O2 Academy Newcastle is also home to ‘Bulletproof’’, Newcastle’s longest running club night and the North East’s most successful indie club. Each and every Saturday, ‘Bulletproof’ features guest DJs and live sets. The NME even quoted ‘Bulletproof’ as ‘the who’s who of bands about to become famous!”.