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EXCLUSIVE – DERMOT MORGAN aka Fr. Ted LIVE 1990

We all enjoyed Euro 2016 but sadly Ireland’s time in the Euros had to end sometime. Fingers crossed for World Cup 2018 qualification!

What would the late Irish footy mad comedy legend Dermot Morgan make of it all? A hugely passionate UCD and Ireland soccer fan Dermot would have reveled in the Irish team’s success.

In 1990, soon after Italia 90 & years before Fr Ted fame, Dermot performed at The Entertainment Party Conference at The Olympia Theatre in Dublin. The Irish teams’s iconic physio Mick Byrne was the guest of honour and the star studded evening was co-hosted by 2FM DJs Dave Fanning and the late Gerry Ryan re-splendid in a pony tail. The EPC was like Ireland’s version of The Secret Policeman’s Ball and ran way overtime due to the amount of acts who wanted to perform. The intention was to film it for RTE TV Variety – then boss David Blake-Knox was a supporter – but just before the date of the show the national broadcaster was hit with a major strike and the decision to fund the filming was shelved. The producers were now in a bind – either cancel the outside broadcast unit and don’t record the most exciting night of Irish comedy and music OR take a punt and pay for the production out of their own pocket. They chose the latter and afterwards – without a broadcaster officially on board – the master tapes lay in various boxes and were moved around homes and offices for over 25 years.

Recently a grintager (AKA the EPC promoter & producer!) discovered a burnt in Time Code rough OB cut on VHS with more VHS copies of the masters. With digital editing we were able to lose the onscreen T/C but as you can see and hear, it is a rough OB cut. The final edit is also lacking two handheld stage cameras and the audio mix – plus missing the roving backstage camera tapes that recorded interviews and priceless informal dressing room chats and performances.

The producers are now searching for the audio mix and the remaining camera masters of the live 2 hour concert that also featured Ronnie Drew, Sean Hughes, Paul Brady, Niall McAnna, Mr. Trellis (Ardal O’Hanlon, Barry Murphy & Kevin Gildea), Philip Chevron and Terry Woods (The Pogues), Agnes Bernelle, Shay Healy, Ian McPherson, Michael Redmond, Dermot Carmody and many more.

 Ironically another act on the night The Joshua Trio (a spoof tribute U2 act) featured a certain Arthur Matthews who a few years later would co-write with Graham Linehan one of the most revered and acclaimed sitcoms ever and cast Dermot as Father Ted (Crilly).

Sadly some of the above featured names are also no longer with us – Gerry, Dermot M, Ronnie, Philip and Agnes – so the EPC is a fantastic archive and legacy of Irish stand up comedy and music of its time. Not to mention seeing Irish broadcasting legend like Gerry Ryan in his prime.

The concert rushes that have been found are now being re-mastered and re-formatted. Some camera tapes are still missing and fingers crossed too for a safe recovery of the audio masters. The sound you will hear is from the stage camera.

If the lost tapes do turn up hopefully there will be a full edit and mix of the full show available in late 2016. Fingers Xed.

Meanwhile here exclusively is the late and great Dermot Morgan live at the Olympia in 1990 performing a parody of ‘A Nation Once Again’ as performed by Irish musical rebel rousers The Wolf Tones.

Ní fheicimid a leithéad arís.

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