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Dublin Live
Amy Donohoe

11 stars who performed in Dublin’s Academy over the years

The Academy is an iconic north Dublin venue known for its intimate concerts.

It's also known for its Circus nights on a Saturday - with four floors, each for different music tastes. And we can’t forget the sign above the venue - which got a lot of attention during the pandemic.

The Main Room has a standing capacity of 650 people and there’s room for an extra 200 people on the upper balcony, perfect for a concert, and despite the relatively small capacity, it has hosted some legendary live acts and DJs.

Here’s some of the top stars who performed there over the years:

Read more: Sign of the times: The Academy grabs attention during year long pandemic closure

The Killers

Back in August 2008, The Killers played the small venue and sang their iconic hits including Somebody Told Me, Smile Like You Mean It, and of course, Mr Brightside.

Brandon Flowers and Ronnie Vannucci of The Killers at Glastonbury 2019 (Jim Dyson/Getty Images)

Lily Allen

In 2009, if you were looking for a Paddy’s Day pre-drink, you could’ve had a bop and a pint while watching Lily Allen on March 16 of that year.

Popstar Lily Allen will also be performing at Love Sensation (Erika Goldring/Getty)

Calvin Harris

You could’ve seen the worldwide famous DJ for just €30 on November 6, 2009. Commenting on the live show back in the day, Harris said "My live band's gonna be even more rocking than the tunes.

"I'll be singing, but only because no one else in Dumfries can sing. I've got an extremely limited range. But I will be wearing a top hat made from the skin of a tiger."

Calvin Harris (2022 Mark Wieland Getty)

Mumford and Sons

In September 2009, the band played a short setlist in the venue's basement. The songs included: Little Lion Man, Roll Away Your Stone, White Blank Page, Dust Bowl Dance and The Cave.

Mumford & Sons (2019 Getty Images)


Back when the Academy was called Spirit, the music icon played a secret show in the venue in 2002 before his sold out Malahide Park gig.

Prince singing in the Academy, Dublin (The Academy Facebook)


Fans from 2013 will never forget Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ stage dive in the Abbey Street venue. The duo later skyrocketed to fame with the release of their mega smash hit Thrift Shop - and the rest is history.

David Bowie

On October 10, 1999 Bowie played at The HQ Club (now The Academy) with Placebo.

David Bowie performing on stage in 1973 (Michael Putland/Getty Images)

Sinead O’Connor

The Nothing Compares 2 U star performed at a charity concert to benefit Paul Newman's Barretstown Children's Camp at The Academy in March 2009.

Sinead O'Connor (AFP/Getty Images)

Mac Miller

In 2016, the late Mac Miller took to the Academy stage. It was just €26.50 to see the American star.

Mac Miller (2012 David Wolff - Patrick Getty)

Dua Lipa

The Hotter Than Hell Tour came to the Academy in October 2016. It was only €22.90 to see Dua Lipa back then, how things have changed.

Dua Lipa (MCD)

Post Malone

In February 2017, the rapper played to a sold out venue in Academy.

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