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Galway impressionist moves from star of stage to small screen

A Galway man who followed his dream of ‘making it big’ Stateside has been leaving a lasting impression on the New York comedy circuit.

Headford native Shane Cunningham has gone from performing his blend of comedy and celebrity impressions at weddings in Ireland to featuring in a HBO Max series in just four short years.

And this success, he says, is owed partly to persistence and grasping every opportunity that comes his way with both hands.

Speaking to the Connacht Tribune this week from New York, the 28-year-old says he sees this latest role in the reality TV series, Serving the Hamptons, as another step on his way to making a lasting career out of the art he loves – but it hasn’t all been plain sailing.

“I was a comedian impressionist back home, doing the wedding circuit and any gigs I could get really – I did a bit of radio work too on Galway Bay FM, iRadio and 2FM. I was 24 at the time and I was looking at going to the US so the decision was to either stay in Ireland and pursue a career in radio, maybe, or go to the States and try that,” he recalls.

“It was always a dream to go to America and explore whatever opportunities would come my way, so I ended up in New York,” continues Shane.

The bright lights of New York were a culture shock, he says, but in time he found his footing having left behind the comforts of home with his parents Michael and Cathy, and his brother and sister.

“I had spent most of my time in Headford before leaving so coming from a country farmhouse to New York was a big change,” he laughs.

“New York can be a very lonely city but there is a great Irish community here so I caught on to that and it has become a home away from home.”

Caption: Shane Cunningham in New York.

Get the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can download the digital edition from You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

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