Derry’s big screen experience goes Live

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Derry’s city centre will feature ringside seats for some of the biggest sporting and cultural events of the summer, thanks to the new BBC Live Site which has taken up residency in Waterloo Place.

Feel like you’re sitting in Centre Court this weekend for all the action of the Wimbledon Ladies’ and Men’s finals, which will be screened live on July 7 and 8, providing the ultimate al fresco viewing experience for local tennis fans. Why not bring a picnic and make yourself comfortable in the specially laid out seating area which, if the weather is favourable, will be decked out with Astroturf, beanbags and deckchairs for the occasion.

The site is one of 21 specially designated Live big screen sites located throughout the UK, and the Wimbledon screenings are just the first in a packed programme of events being shown in the city centre. The scheme is a Public Space Broadcasting Partnership project to animate city centres across the UK.

Speaking ahead of the Wimbledon screenings, Derry City Council’s Director of Development, Oonagh McGillion, said the Live Site would be a great addition to the city’s summer programme of events, which this week sees the excitement of the ten day Clipper Homecoming Festival.

“We hope that the Live Sites Programme will reach wider out-of-home audiences, helping to promote local and national events, and creating a really positive city centre atmosphere,” she explained. “In the long-term I am confident that the Live Site will become a valuable resource as a digital canvas used to inform, educate and entertain.”

Throughout July and August sports fans can enjoy all the excitement of the live action of the Olympics, with regular screenings of all the events. From the much anticipated spectacle of the opening ceremony, coverage of all the Olympic events will be shown daily, as well as live coverage of the Paralympic Games throughout August and September.

And it’s not just track and field action getting the big screen treatment, local culture vultures can don their opera glasses on July 16 for a special live screening of The Royal Ballet Company’s Metamorphosis: Titian 2012. This world-class production of ballet will be beamed live from Covent Garden to 21 locations up and down the UK as part of its highly anticipated summer programme.

Already a feature at Belfast City Hall, the Live Site has become a popular visitor attraction drawing regular crowds to watch European football matches and other cultural and sporting events.

The local Live Site programme project is being run in partnership between Derry City Council and the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), the BBC, DCAL and DSD.

For a full programme of screenings and regular updates about the BBC Live Site, go to www.derrycity.gov.uk/livesite