Live at the Marquee: Cork singer Lyra brings all the hits to Leeside

by brittneyrowe

Lyra is a star on the rise and nowhere was that more evident than inside the tent at Live at the Marquee on Sunday evening as the Bandon woman marked her biggest Cork gig to date.

Fresh off the release of her eponymous album (“number one, Beyoncé who?”) and following two sold-out shows at Cork Opera House earlier this year, it is no surprise that Lyra’s Marquee debut was packed to the rafters, though she said she was shocked when she learned the gig was entirely her own: months ago when she got the call she thought she was being invited to support another act. 

Lyra in concert at Live At The Marquee, Cork, on Sunday night. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Lyra in concert at Live At The Marquee, Cork, on Sunday night. Picture: Eddie O’Hare

Instead, the crowd was warmed up by Armagh singer-songwriter Odhran Murphy, who sang original music including his upcoming single ‘I Can’t Get Back Up’ and an upbeat mashup of Christy Moore’s ‘Black Is The Colour’ and ‘Viva la Vida’ by Coldplay before Lyra appeared to whoops and cheers from her beloved fans, or ‘Weird Club’ as she lovingly describes them.

Dressed in silver thigh-high boots and a matching bodysuit as well as a scarlet cloak and hat, Lyra ran through some of her most popular tunes, including ‘Lover’ and ‘Falling’, as well as her dancefloor collaboration with John Gibbons on Stevie Nicks’ classic anthem ‘Edge Of Seventeen’.

Jenny Conroy, Laois, and Bernie Hyland, Kilkenny, at Lyra's Live At The Marquee concert on Sunday night. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Jenny Conroy, Laois, and Bernie Hyland, Kilkenny, at Lyra’s Live At The Marquee concert on Sunday night. Picture: Eddie O’Hare

But Lyra was not on stage just to sing — the star was also there for the chats. She entertained the crowd with album anecdotes and tales of heartbreak and bullying as well as segues about anything and everything. 

It was a joy to hear a strong Cork accent between the tunes and Lyra, 31, recently told Irish Examiner Weekend about the pressure she faced from a major label in her 20s to tone down her Corkness. 

Five thousand fans in the Marquee couldn’t have been happier to hear her lilting voice — almost as happy as Lyra was to see them.

“Hello Cork, I’m so happy to be here,” she said. 

Can you believe it? I’m singing in the Marquee, lads! Thank you so much for believing in me and showing up. 

She paid tribute to her family and her parents, wishing her dad a happy Father’s Day and thanking her mam for encouraging her to be herself when she was struggling to fit in in school, before singing ‘Mother’.

Lyra in concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Lyra in concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O’Hare

From her stage presence to her metallic bodysuits and accessories, she reminded this reviewer of Lady Gaga during her Marquee gig in 2009. 

Like Gaga, Lyra is an entertainer through and through and when she too is a household name internationally Marquee-goers will fondly recall seeing her in her home county at the cusp of fame. The Weird Club is only going to get bigger.

Live at the Marquee continues on Friday when Mick Flannery and special guest Susan O’Neill take to the stage. The Biggest Disco takes place at the venue on Saturday and ‘Another Love’ singer Tom Odell will close this year’s festival on June 25.

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Out and about at Live at the Marquee…

Joe Duncliffe and Adelaide Keating, Upper Glanmire, were looking forward to Lyra's set at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Joe Duncliffe and Adelaide Keating, Upper Glanmire, were looking forward to Lyra’s set at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
Emily Nowotynski and Clive Sweetnam from Leap, Co Cork, arriving for Lyra's Live At The Marquee concert on Sunday evening. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Emily Nowotynski and Clive Sweetnam from Leap, Co Cork, arriving for Lyra’s Live At The Marquee concert on Sunday evening. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
Sisters Caroline and Marian McCarthy from Clonakilty were at Lyra's Live At The Marquee concert. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Sisters Caroline and Marian McCarthy from Clonakilty were at Lyra’s Live At The Marquee concert. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
Kate McCarthy, Erica Varian, Lynda Murphy, and Lisa Aleman from Youghal were looking forward to Lyra's Sunday night concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Kate McCarthy, Erica Varian, Lynda Murphy, and Lisa Aleman from Youghal were looking forward to Lyra’s Sunday night concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
Lyra Live At The Marquee: Charlie Higgins was attending his first concert with his mum Niamh Higgins from Ballyvolane, and Mia and Amanda Buckley, Glanmire. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Lyra Live At The Marquee: Charlie Higgins was attending his first concert with his mum Niamh Higgins from Ballyvolane, and Mia and Amanda Buckley, Glanmire. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
Patrick and Aoife Quinn from Ovens at the Lyra concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Patrick and Aoife Quinn from Ovens at the Lyra concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
Lucy Maher, Carrigaline, and Ciara O'Keeffe, Albert Rd, Cork, at the Lyra concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Lucy Maher, Carrigaline, and Ciara O’Keeffe, Albert Rd, Cork, at the Lyra concert at Live At The Marquee. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
Clare McCarthy and Annette Kennefick, both from Ballycotton Co Cork, ahead of Lyra's Live At The Marquee concert on Sunday evening. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Clare McCarthy and Annette Kennefick, both from Ballycotton Co Cork, ahead of Lyra’s Live At The Marquee concert on Sunday evening. Picture: Eddie O’Hare

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