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O2 Theatre in London
The O2 Theatre in London, not to be confused with the O2 Theatre in Dublin, Ireland, is a major entertainment venue in South East London that includes an indoor arena, a music club, a Cineworld movie theatre, an exhibition area, piazzas, and several bars and restaurants. Also known as the O2 Centre, the O2 Arena, and most commonly, the O2 Dome, the area was formerly the site of the Millennium Dome, a dome-shaped building whose nickname “The Dome” has stuck to its new tenant.
Originally built in 1995, the building was first home to the “Millennium Experience” exhibition, which ran for a year from January 1, 2000 to December 31, 2000. The Dome was renamed in May 2008 to officially transition the area into an entertainment space with the O2 branding. The naming rights to O2 were bought by O2 plc (now known as Telefonica Europa plc) from Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG).
Along the main strip of the area, Entertainment Avenue, lie the various attractions of the O2 Theatre: the indigO2 music club, Cineworld, the O2 Bubble, and 25 bars and restaurants. There are no fast food chains on the premises, as they have been banned in order to keep a more sophisticated atmosphere to the O2 Dome.
The O2 Arena
The O2 Arena opened June 24, 2007 with a concert by Bon Jovi. The arena continued to host big names such as Elton John in its freshman year. With a seating capacity of 23,000, the arena is most commonly used as a convert venue for live music, featuring major bands and international artists.
With performances each weekend, the venue has hosted live musical events, dramatic performances, plays, musicals, and other shows. Performances include Michael Jackson: THE IMMORTAL World Tour by Cirque du Soleil, Elvis Presley in Concert, Drake, The British X Factor Live, WWE WrestleMania Revenge Tour, Dhamaka 2012, New Kids on the Block & Backstreet Boys, as well as Barry Manilow.
The indigO2 Music Club
Within the O2 Theatre area is the indigO2 live music club that sits 2,410, often used for after shows, club events, and may be rented out for private parties. The music club has four bars, a VIP lounge called Purple Lounge; the club is managed by Ansco Music Club limited. Artists and groups such as OMD , George Clinton, Pete Bennett, Aimee Mann, Joss Stone, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Beverly Knight, J. Cole, Fabolous, Timbaland, Chris Brown, Mikar the Viper, Peter Andre, and Prince have hosted after parties here. Album launch parties, awards shows, comedy lineups and other events have all been hosted at the indigO2.
Cineworld & O2 Bubble
Cineworld at the O2 Theater is a major movie complex, with 11 screens, and two levels, seating as much as 770 per room. The O2 Bubble is a bubble-shaped exhibition space that opened in November 2007, and has featured exhibitions such as Tutankhamen and the Golden Age of Pharaohs, Body Worlds, and Michael Jackson: The Official Exhibition.
The Matter is an indoor multi-purpose space for live music, clubbing, and other events. Similar London venues include Brixton Academy. There's also an outdoor events area for special events, that are held in the various piazzas: The London Piazza, which has an indoor beach, an ice rink, and a dry ski slope, and Peninsula Piazza.
The O2 Theatre is easily accessible via public transit. If using the Tube, there's the North Greenwich station, which conveniently opened just before the millennium exhibition when the O2 Theatre was known as the Millennium Dome. There's also the Thames Clippers river boat service and the O2 Express Service.