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New political satire show is no laughing matter

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Ten minutes into the first instalment of the new series of the political satire show on RTÉ 1 and enough was enough. It was time to flick the switch on this unfortunate programme.

The first series of Irish Pictorial Weekly was not funny, and neither is this, which begs the question about why it was even embarked upon. It is actually embarrassingly bad.

It is a pity because the writing team behind this series have given us Apres Match and Ross O’Carroll-Kelly – both classics – but tragically this is simply not working.

Yes, they do characters like Angela Merkel, Enda Kenny, Michael Noonan, Anne Doyle, Gerry Adams along with civil servant committee that meet in the bowels of Dáil Éireann, but the spark or the imagination is not there.

There are times when political satire works better on radio than it does on the telly. The Mario Rosenstock Show is a typical example of this. What goes on radio should really stay on radio.

Rosenstock, and indeed Oliver Callan, are brilliant on radio but when it comes to reprising these characters for the bigger screen, it is an unmitigated disaster.

This show is trying desperately to give Hall’s Pictorial Weekly a 21st century look but back in the day that was a very unique series and was novel at the time. It was the first show on RTÉ to do a proper send up of politicians but also part of its success was the presenter Frank Hall who possessed a wry type of wit.

Irish Pictorial Weekly is simply a poor copy of this, and proves the old saying about what’s not broken shouldn’t be fixed.

Take, for example, the sketch involving Michael Noonan. He was being portrayed quizzically as Alfred Hitchcock with the appropriate music in the background and then when it came to the dialogue, it was desperately unfunny. Maybe the writers are trying too hard to break new ground that the comedy element has been lost in the process.

After the aforementioned 10 minutes, it seemed as if they had just copied and pasted the last series into this one as there was absolutely nothing new for the audience. It is my express hope that there will never be another series of this comedy nightmare but I suppose in the best traditions of RTE it will take years before they realise that this is an unmitigated disaster.

I give you The Late Late Show and Brendan O’Connor’s Saturday Night Show as prime examples of this.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

CITY TRIBUNE

TG4 to broadcast Sina’s lockdown Town Hall gig

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German-born Sina moved to Ireland in 2015 to pursue her musical dream.

A concert by German born, Irish-based singer-songwriter Sina Theil, which was recorded at the Town Hall Theatre in December 2020, during lockdown will be broadcast by TG4 this Saturday night, February 4.

This energetic and hardworking artist is currently touring Ireland as special guest with rising folk singer Dan McCabe.

She has previously been named Hottest Act in Irish Country Music (female), won Song of the Year at the Hot Country TV Awards and the Rising Star of the Year 2022 Award at the American Celtic Listener Supported Music Awards. She’s also had 17 number one singles in the Irish Country charts and a number one in the mainstream Irish charts with her latest self-penned song.

Sina relocated to Ireland in 2015 on her own in what she calls “an act of blind faith” to pursue her dream of making music. She knew nobody here as she began funding her musical education by busking on the streets of Dublin, sometimes making just enough in the morning to cover bills that had to be paid in the afternoon.

Sina’s independently released album, Live at THT Galway, for which she crowdfunded more than €16,000 with the help of her loyal online following (50,000+), reached number three in the mainstream Irish charts and songs have had thousands of plays on Irish radio.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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CITY TRIBUNE

Stories, drama and improv at Moth and Butterfly Festival

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The Moth & Butterfly International Festival of Storytelling & Improvisation will take place in Galway City, County and online from this Friday to Saturday, February 3-5.

Events will include improvisational theatre events, children’s storytime, a virtual global story chain, a music workshop and an audio experience in Connemara, according to Artistic Director Órla Mc Govern.

The Moth & Butterfly group have been running monthly events in Galway for 12 years, as well as collaborating with festivals and events globally. Following two successful digital and hybrid festivals in 2021 and 2022, theyre now bringing their first fully live festival to Galway and beyond.  It has a wide range of events for all ages, many free or via donation.

Land of Stories will run from this Friday to Sunday at locations in Connemara and online. In this selection of recorded stories and conversations, local artists discuss their practice and connection to the landscape. It involves recordings being ‘placed’ in various places, using location-based software, so the stories are activated by being in a specific area. Remote access is available via an online map, for those who can’t travel.

At 11.30am this Friday, storytellers Catherine Brophy and Máirín Mhic Lochlainn will be at Galway City Library to present a free, bilingual event, Stories For Children / Scéalta do Pháistí.  At 3pm Tales of Mischief and Magic will be at Oranmore Library, when Antrim storyteller Liz Weir will lead participants on an interactive journey through the imagination. It’s for ages 6+ and is free.

At 8pm, Parenthetical, an improvised theatrical performance with The Jess’ss’ss will be in the city’s Blue Teapot Theatre, Munster Avenue, for audiences of 18+. It’s based on the theme of ‘Parent’.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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CITY TRIBUNE

Artist Gertrude in flying form at Kenny Gallery

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Eat Drink and Be Merry

A collection of 40 original paintings and graphics by renowned German artist Gertrude Degenhardt, will open at The Kenny Gallery in the city’s Liosbán Retail Park on Saturday, February 11th at 3pm.

The show, Flying Melodies, features new and retrospective works and is described by the gallery as something of a Greatest Hits, featuring many images which will be well-known to her Irish fans.

Gertrude Degenhardt, who is one of Germany’s leading painters and graphic artists, first came to Ireland in the early 1970s when she was commissioned to prepare illustrations for a German edition of a book of short stories by Liam O’Flaherty.

She has produced several exhibitions for the Kenny Gallery over the years, including Women in Music –  a series of 70 images of female musicians – Vagabondage, Passes By, Paradise Lost, Dancing Couples and It’s About Time.

Degenhardt, who was born in 1940, is a keen observer of people. Song and wine feature frequently in her distinctive work, as do revolution, vagabonds, dance, musicians, Ireland and her late husband, Martin.

Flying Melodies will be officially opened by renowned fiddle player Frankie Gavin at 3pm on Saturday, February 11, at The Kenny Gallery, Liosbán Retail Park. All are welcome.

The exhibition will run daily from 9am-5pm, Monday to Saturday, until St Patrick’s Day in the gallery and online at www.thekennygallery.

 

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