Brian O'Driscoll holds up the Heineken Cup

Thousands enjoy Obama’s star studded concert in Dublin


Brian O'Driscoll holds up the Heineken Cup

Concert organizers estimate that over 25,000 crammed into the area of College Green by Trinity College to see the concert prepared for President Barack Obama entitled "Is Féidir Linn" ("Yes we can!")

Compare, RTE Radio and TV host, Ryan Turbridy opened the show introducing a performance from Sharon Shannon and the Saw Doctors.

Brendan Gleeson gave a rousing and emotional speech about the 1845 visit by Fredrick Douglass, Obama's hero. He was followed by Ryan Sheridan singing "Jigsaw".

Stephen Rea then took to the stage reciting the WB Yeats poem "I am Ireland". He dedicated it to all the Irish people who had been forced to emigrate over the years. He said "We hope it will not be too long before these people, or their children, return to dance with us in Ireland".

Dubliner Imelda May then took the stage with her hit song "Johnny Got a Boom Boom" before sports commentator Mícheál Ó Muircheartaigh spoke and the Heinken Cup made an appearance. The now retired Ó Muircheartaigh introduced Irish sporting heroes to the stage including Robbie Keane, Colm Cooper, Katie Taylor, ‘King’ Henry Shefflin, Padraig Harrington and Brian O’Driscoll, fresh from Leinster’s Heineken Cup victory.

Celine Byrne, a Kildare soprano, sang "Danny Boy" before actor Daniel Day Lewis welcomed Obama. He said "Mr President, whatsoever your foot treads upon this great Earth of us, I wish you a welcome as brimful of affection and welcomness as that which we offer you today. “As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this to the extent of the difference is no democracy”; Abraham Lincoln."

Next up on stage were the up and coming band the Coronas followed by Saoirse Ronan. Ronan joked that as she had a US passport she could technically end up in the White House herself some day. She then introduced Jedward, the Eurovision duo, with their song "Lipstick".

Westlife then rounded up the evening's entertainment with two of their hit tunes before Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny took the stage to introduced the President.


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