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Dermot Kennedy @ AO Arena review – A history making concert

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Featured image and gallery: Ben Redshaw

Irish singer-songwriter Dermot Kennedy delivered his largest performance to date at Manchester’s AO Arena on Friday, capturing the hearts of his Manchester fans.

Kennedy is currently touring the UK to promote his latest album, Sonder, and was supported by American folk musician Noah Kahan for his latest date.

Kahan rose to fame after releasing his now-iconic hit song ‘Young Blood’, which has amassed over 9 million streams since 2017. Kahan opened his set with two timeless songs: ‘The View Between Villages’ and ‘All My Love’, both played exclusively on the ukulele. 

Announcing himself to the audience after his first two songs, Kahan said: “Some people say I look like a Jewish Ed Sheeran, but tonight, I’m Folk Malone.” The folk star wrapped up his stunning performance with ‘Young Blood.’

After a brief intermission, Kennedy took to the stage and the crowd went wild. He delighted the audience with ‘Blossom,’ ‘Power Over Me,’ and ‘One Life’. 

Kennedy played a couple of solo piano tunes, making the show more melodious. “I close my eyes and try to look for a day in the past, a perfect memory,” he said before performing ‘Rome.’ 

13,000 people lit up the AO Arena for Kennedy’s biggest performance of his career so far. This feat not lost on Kennedy when he addressed his audience: “Even though we’ve been on tour for a while, it doesn’t seem like it’s been that long since we played The Deaf Institute for 200 people.” 

As thousands of fans yelled and chanted for their favourite Irish singer-songwriter, Kennedy came back on stage for his encore to perform some of his biggest hits, including ‘Kiss Me,’ ‘Outnumbered,’ and the show-closing, uplifting ‘Something To Someone.’ 

Dermot Kennedy will continue to tour the UK throughout 2023, with dates in London, Edinburgh and Scarborough.

Gallery: Noah Kahan supporting Dermot Kennedy at AO Arena

Gallery: Dermot Kennedy performance at AO Arena

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Ben Redshaw

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