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Grammy Award-winning pop sensation Ed Sheeran is heading to the West Side this fall — and he’ll surely be bringing his Galway Girl along as he headlines this year’s Irish Arts Center anniversary gala. 

Ed Sheeran performing at Wembley Stadium in London under green lights. Photo: Mark Kent/Flickr

In October, the Hell’s Kitchen cultural center is celebrating its 50th Anniversary Spirit of Ireland Gala at Chelsea Piers and will welcome the four-time Grammy winner and record-breaking musician fresh off the European leg of his + – = ÷ x (pronounced mathematics) tour as honoree of the evening, paying tribute to Sheeran’s many achievements — and with additional special guests still to be announced. 

Sheeran has sold over 50 million albums worldwide and hit 60 billion streams and the UK-born Shape of You musician has long spoken of his fondness for Ireland, citing his Irish heritage and the country’s music as a powerful influence from an early age. In an interview with Irish radio station RTÉ earlier this year, Sheeran said: “[Ireland] is such a special part of the world. It’s such an integral part of my family.” He visits the country frequently and would like to own a home in Ireland

While the celebration will take place at Pier 60, the Irish Arts Center recently completed their brand-new complex on 11th Avenue, a $54 million, 21,700 square-foot, state-of the art performance venue which opened with a glitzy opening ceremony in December 2021

In addition to the special appearance by Sheeran, highlights of the center’s fall season include a residency with notable Irish indie-pop band Pillow Queens (September 13-17); the presentation of two new dance works commissioned by Irish Arts Center – Ceili, a collaboration of Irish American choreographers Sean Curran and Darrah Carr (September 29-October 2), and Chekhov’s First Play, a “pure, theatrical thrill ride” from the Obie-winning Irish Theatre company Dead Centre (October 19-November 6); Utsav Lal’s genre colliding Ragas to Reels, a collaborative Irish and Indian musical event with composer Linda Buckley, flute, whistle and sax player Sam Comerford, vocalist Ganavya, tabla player Nitin Mitta,and poet Sahar Romani(November 17-19); the 13th annual PoetryFest (December 2-4); the continuation of Maud Cotter’s solo visual art exhibition questioning the nature of form and physical reality and more than 40 classes in Irish language, music and dance available for Hell’s Kitchen residents and New Yorkers to enjoy. 

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