Billy Joel at Aviva Stadium: Everything you need to know
From tickets and transport to accessibility, security, the weather and the set list
Billy Joel: his Aviva Stadium gig on June 23rd will essentially be a giant singalong session
It’s five years since Billy Joel last played Ireland, and his gig on Saturday, June 23rd, at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, will be his only Irish appearance this year. Joel, a regular visitor to these shores, with a string of usually sold-out shows behind him, leads what is essentially a giant singalong session, rolling out covers at the request of the audience.
Even though the New Yorker hasn’t released an album with original material since Fantasies & Delusions, from 2001, and declared on New Year’s Eve in 1999, at Madison Square Garden, that that gig would be his last, he has been touring the world on and off since 2006, making sure to play hits like Uptown Girl and We Didn’t Start the Fire.
The BBC has reported that some of the audience at his concert in Manchester this week, at Old Trafford, complained that they couldn’t see Joel from their seats; a number asked to move or walked out. But you never know when an artist like Joel might decide to hang up his touring shoes, so it’s probably better to treat each show as if it were his last.
Here’s everything you need to know about Billy Joel’s Aviva Stadium gig.
Are tickets still available?
Ticketmaster still has a few for between €70.45 and €136. It also has platinum tickets for between €385 and €400 – but these are only single tickets, meaning you will be sitting alone. The concert promoter has warned fans not to buy tickets from any secondary sellers, as they may not be valid.
What time does everything kick off?
Doors open at 6.30pm, with Joel expected on stage at 8pm. There is no support act, and if you leave the venue you cannot come back in.
How do I get there . . . and home?
Use public transport if you can, not least because some local roads will be closed. And allow an extra 90 minutes to get there, to make sure you’re not late. Your ticket will say which of the five coloured-coded routes into the stadium to follow.
- By Dublin Bus The Aviva Stadium area is served by routes 4, 5, 7, 7a, 7n, 8, 18, 27x, 45 and 47, all of which go to Ballsbridge; routes 7b, 7d, 32x, 39b, 41x, 46a, 46e, 77x, 84x, 116, 118 and 145, all of which go to Donnybrook; and routes 2, 3 and 18, all of which go to Sandymount.
- By Irish Rail Extra trains will be running to get people to and from Lansdowne Road, next door to the stadium; irishrail.ie has more information on train times.
- Road closures and traffic restrictions The following roads will be closed to through traffic from 2pm on June 23rd: Lansdowne Park; Lansdowne Lane; Lansdowne Road from Shelbourne Road to Herbert Bridge; Herbert Road; Newbridge Avenue; Bath Avenue; and Londonbridge Road. The following roads will be closed to through traffic from 4.30pm: the remainder of Lansdowne Road, from Shelbourne Road to Pembroke Road; Shelbourne Road; Beatty’s Avenue; and Ballsbridge Avenue.
- There will be no parking on Simmonscourt Road (both sides), Anglesea Road (both sides from Merrion Road to 53 Anglesea Road, and left-hand side only from there to Donnybrook Church), Merrion Road (between Simmonscourt Road and Anglesea Road), Sandymount Avenue (left side from Merrion Road to the level crossing), Ailesbury Drive (right side from Anglesea Road to Ailesbury Grove), Ailesbury Grove (left side from Ailesbury Drive to Ailesbury Road) and Simmonscourt Avenue.
- Only accredited vehicles will be allowed through the Garda cordon around the stadium. Local residents, their immediate families, and local businesses should bring proof of their address – but bear in mind that this won’t guarantee them access on roads full of fans walking towards the Aviva.
What about disabled access?
The Aviva has wheelchair locations on each level; you can book one by calling Ticketmaster on 0818-903001 in the Republic, on 0844-2779964 in the UK, or on +353-818-903001 from anywhere else. Use the same numbers to book some of the stadium’s accessible seating. The stadium operates a strict one-plus-one policy in these areas.
The stadium car park has 100 accessible spaces, for which you’ll need a valid car pass. If you have bought a wheelchair ticket Ticketmaster will email you, using the address you gave when you booked, about a car pass. You must print out this pass to bring with you on the day – and you must arrive by about 4.30pm, to avoid road closures. If you have not bought a wheelchair or accessible ticket but need to apply for accessible parking, email email@example.com.
What about security?
Don’t bring a bag unless absolutely necessary, as you’ll be patted down and searched while everyone else is fast-tracked through security. Any bag must be smaller than a sheet of A4 paper.Banned items include umbrellas, large-lens professional cameras or any form of video recorder, flagpoles, selfie sticks, sticks for banners, anything that could be used as a weapon, bottles, glass vessels, cans, flasks, frisbees, illegal substances, scooters, skateboards or other skates, laser devices, prams or pushchairs, inflatable or folding chairs, suitcases, laptops, illegal merchandise, hampers and cool boxes, air horns, and all animals except service dogs and guide dogs.
Do I need to bring ID?
Yes. You need to prove your age to buy alcohol at the bars. Under-16s must be accompanied by a parent or a guardian at all times.
Will food be available?
The stadium will have a wide range of food stalls.
What will the weather be like?
The forecast is for sunshine and temperatures of up to 18 degrees. Remember to dress accordingly – and note that umbrellas are among banned items.
What is Billy Joel likely to play?
He’ll play some of his biggest hits and dip into old favourites by other artists, letting the audience vote on which cover they’d like to hear. At Old Trafford this week his set list was:
- My Life
- The Entertainer
- Your Song (Elton John cover)
- The Longest Time
- The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Solomon Linda cover)
- Half a Mile Away
- New York State of Mind
- Movin’ Out (Anthony’s Song)
- Don’t Ask Me Why
- Sunshine of Your Love (Cream cover)
- Ruby Tuesday (Rolling Stones cover)
- Honky Tonk Women (Rolling Stones cover)
- The House of the Rising Sun (Eric Burdon & the Animals cover)
- A Salty Dog (Procol Harum cover)
- Good Times Bad Times (Led Zeppelin cover)
- Glad All Over (The Dave Clark Five cover)
- The Downeaster Alexa
- Fire (The Jimi Hendrix Experience cover)
- Sometimes a Fantasy
- Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen cover)
- Sultans of Swing (Dire Straits cover)
- She’s Always a Woman
- The River of Dreams/A Hard Day’s Night
- A Day in the Life (The Beatles cover)
- Nessun Dorma
- Scenes from an Italian Restaurant
- Piano Man
- We Didn’t Start the Fire
- Uptown Girl
- It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me
- You May Be Right