The AO Arena, managed and operated by ASM Global, is one of the busiest venues in the world and the largest indoor arena in Europe.
Since opening in 1995, the Arena has hosted the biggest names in live entertainment including U2, The Rolling Stones, Madonna, Lady Gaga, Pavarotti and the record-breaking 2010/2011 residency by local comedian Peter Kay.
In addition to live music, the venue has also staged some of the biggest events in the UK sporting calendar including several 2002 Commonwealth Games' events, the 2012 Olympic basketball warm-up match between team USA and GB, the 2008 FINA World Swimming Championships and international boxing bouts by Mike Tyson, David Haye, Joe Calzaghe and local champions Ricky Hatton, Amir Khan and Anthony Crolla.
The Arena has also played a key part in the city's rich musical heritage with historic shows by local bands Take That, Oasis, Elbow, New Order, James, Happy Mondays, The Charlatans, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, M People, Doves, Inspiral Carpets, The Verve, Simply Red and The Courteeners.
Attracting over one million visitors each year, the 21,000 capacity Arena is a former winner of the industry's prestigious International Venue of the Year award.
In 2020, online electricals retailer AO became the headline sponsor of the Arena. As we welcome back fans and artists from all over the world for our 25th year, we can’t wait for them to be greeted by the famous AO smile.