We Love Bournemouth
O2 Academy Bournemouth is an outstanding Grade II listed building and provides a beautiful backdrop for any live performance. Over 100 years old, the venue was built in 1894 by Archibald Beckett and opened on 27 May 1895 as The Grand Theatre and Pavilion. Early shows came from some of the biggest talents of the time, alongside silent film, opera and even a circus. In 1899 it became the Boscombe Grand Theatre, a Music Hall which also hosted singing, dancing and comedy shows, as well as theatre productions.
In 1905 the theatre was re-branded the Boscombe Hippodrome and continued to run as a successful Music Hall until it closed its doors in 1956 and reopened as a Dance Hall called the Royal Arcade Ballrooms. Music fans danced their way through the 1970s when changing trends hailed in a new era; as Starkers Royal Ballroom it saw epic shows from the biggest rock acts before becoming Tiffany’s Disco and The Academy in the 1980s and was crowned Best Club in the UK multiple times. In 1997 the venue became the Opera House, putting Bournemouth on the map as a serious clubbing destination.
Following major refurbishment in 2006, O2 Academy Bournemouth launched in September 2009 with The xx supporting and Florence and the Machine showing off the acoustics of this magnificent theatre. The Daily Echo exclaimed, “the real winner has to be the region's music fans who can now count the O2 Academy as another great live music venue on their doorstep”. Since opening, the venue has hosted music, comedy, sporting and corporate events, with some of the biggest names to grace the stage including Jeff Beck, Queens of the Stone Age, Rita Ora and Disclosure.