Keane cancel Manchester date while Take That move to AO Arena due to Co-Op Live chaos

Keane and Take That have become the latest artists to have their shows at Manchester’s troubled Co-Op Live Arena affected by ongoing “technical difficulties” at the venue.

Keane were supposed to play the new 23,500-capacity arena on Sunday (May 5) as part of a tour celebrating the 20th anniversary of their debut album ‘Hopes And Fears’, while Take That were supposed to be playing five gigs at Co-Op Live from May 7-12.

In a disastrous week for the venue, Co-Op Live had to cancel A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie‘s gig last night (May 1) just 10 minutes after doors opened due to a “venue-related technical issue”, which was later revealed to be caused by part of an air conditioning unit falling from the gantry inside the venue during soundcheck. Later that evening, the venue confirmed Olivia Rodrigo’s shows on Friday and Saturday (May 3-4) would also be postponed, which the artist said she was “so disappointed” about.

A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie’s show has been rescheduled for Saturday (May 4) at the nearby AO Arena.


Now, Keane have confirmed that their show will not be going ahead as planned. “We’re absolutely gutted not to be able to celebrate 20 Years of Hopes and Fears with you at the Co-Op Live on Sunday. This is due to ongoing technical issues at the venue and is entirely beyond our control,” they wrote on X/Twitter.

“We’ve tried extremely hard to find a solution as we know so many of you have made travel plans, but it’s not just been possible.

“We are really disappointed that this has happened and are doing all we can to re-schedule the show.


“Love Tom, Tim, Richard and Jesse x”

Meanwhile, Take That have confirmed that they will be moving their shows to the AO Arena. All dates remain the same apart from the show on May 8, which has been moved to May 9.


“Given the ongoing technical issues around the opening of Co-Op Live we have made the difficult decision to move our May shows to the AO Arena where we have enjoyed many great nights over the years. This is not a decision we’ve taken lightly, but we wanted to give our fans as much notice as possible,” they said in a statement.

“We’re mindful many of you will already have travel and accommodation plans in place, so we have chosen this option to minimise inconvenience to as many people as possible.”

“Our dates in June in Manchester remain unaffected.”

NME spoke to numerous disappointed fans last night who were supposed to be part of what was supposed to be the venue’s debut show.

“We travelled like two hours… it’s just poor, if you’re gonna cancel it, cancel beforehand, so we don’t spend money on getting here,” one fan said. “There’s thousands of people stood outside and you cancel it half an hour after the doors were meant to be open?” added her friend. “It’s stupid.”

The 23,500-capacity arena, located opposite the Etihad Stadium, has been beset by numerous issues since it was supposed to open last month, including rows, controversy and teething problems. Aside from a test event featuring Rick Astley for which some tickets were cancelled, reducing the audience to 11,000, the venue has yet to run a show successfully on the day it was originally scheduled.

It was supposed to open with performances from Peter Kay on April 23 and 24, but the shows were moved to April 29 and 30 due to the venue’s power testing falling “a few days” behind schedule.

Later, a gig from The Black Keys that was scheduled for April 27 had to be moved to May 15, while the Peter Kay shows were moved again to May 23 and 24.

Last week, it was confirmed that Gary Roden, the boss of the new arena, had resigned following the plethora of issues.

Roden had come under fire in particular for his comments about grassroots music venues, arguing that some smaller venues in the UK are “poorly run” and dismissed calls for a £1 ticket levy on all gigs arena-sized and above.

In response, Mark Davyd, CEO of the Music Venue Trust, told NME that he believed Roden’s comments were “disrespectful and disingenuous”, while also highlighting the irony of making such “ill-judged, unnecessary and misleading” remarks on the week that their own venue was forced to postpone their own launch, due to a number of logistical problems.

“Fun facts of the morning: the new @TheCoopLive arena has 46 music events confirmed to take place this year so far,” he wrote. “The average age of the performers is 50 years old. 21.7 per cent of all the shows will be performed by artists over retirement age. 8.6 per cent of all the shows will be performed by artists under the age of 30. 17.3 per cent of all the shows will be performed by artists over the age of 75.”

He continued: “41.3 per cent of all the shows will feature a headline performance by a British artist. The average age of the British artists performing will be 52 years old. No British artist under 30 is confirmed to perform.

“The average length of time it takes for a British artist to be booked to headline the Coop Live Arena from the date of the release of their first album is 30 (THIRTY) years. No British artist that started their career in the last decade is booked to headline the arena… Final Bonus Fact: Coop Live have publicly stated that they don’t believe there are problems with the UK music talent pipeline.”

The launch of the venue comes after Co-Op Live and the existing, 21-000 capacity AO Arena in the city came to blows in a licensing row. ASM Global, which operates the latter venue, objected over “public safety” concerns and accused the application for a licence as being “simply unlawful”. Despite the row, the venue officially had its licence granted last month.