Boherlahan Dualla GAA’s production of Stars in Their Eyes 2017 raised the roof of Halla na Feile last Friday night, 20th October.
As with previous productions in the parish, the organising committee had promised to deliver a spectacular evening’s entertainment, and certainly did not fail to deliver.
A phenomenal number of people attended the event despite the persistent wind and rain. Sports commentator and household name Marty Morrissey was on hand to MC the night proceedings and he was astounded at the high standard of talent on display.
15 local acts comprised of a mixture of soloists, duets, groups and a choir, took to the stage in true professionalism following the superb guidance and production expertise of Mary Rose McNally.
Guest judges William Troy, Josephine Maher, Daragh Mooney and Orla O’Dwyer were certainly wowed with performances and the banter over and back with Marty added to the spectacle.
Local community man Paddy Cullen kicked off proceedings as one of The Monkeys, Micky Dolenz singing ‘I’m a Believer’, with a great reception from the warmed-up audience.
Joan Kennedy entered the hall from the back and gracefully floated to the stage to perform I Dreamed a Dream, famously performed by Susan Boyle. Joan was later crowned our winner of Stars in Their Eyes.
Nothing could have phased the ‘Man in Black’ John Walsh as Johnny Cash, who performed Folsom Prison Blues with true professionalism, despite sound issues.
On Yvonne McLoughlin’s performance as Dusty Springfield, Judge, Josephine Maher said there was no dust on our Dusty tonight.
Youngest participants, James Kirby and John Ryan, handled their new found stardom exceptionally well, leaving young girls hearts throbbing all over the hall. No chance for these ‘babies’ to be left in the corner!
With a breathtaking rendition, Sandra Coppinger shone in her take of Andrea Corr’s ‘Breathless’.
At the end of her performance Lorraine Cormack wasn’t impressed with her three ‘boyo’s James O’Sullivan, Cathal Darcy and Tomas Ryan, but the audience and judges were well impressed.
The largest act of the night, the members of the joint Boherlahan and Dualla choirs closed the first half of the show with a number from the film ‘Sister Act’, ‘Hail Holy Queen’ which certainly brought the first half to an upbeat finish. The parish may well be in for a surprise for their Christmas Choir performances.
Three young Beatles (plus drummer David Ryan), opened the second half of the show with great gusto with their version of the big hit ‘Saw Her Standing There’. The trio of James Downey, Cillian Maher and Phelim Carberry will not be short of bookings for gigs in the coming weeks, after showcasing their combined talent.
Eimear Lowth stunned the audience with her similarity to her idol Celine Dion. Many packets of tissues were used to wipe away tears, following the truly emotional and flawless performance from this high powered vocalist.
First cousins Derek Hayes and Kelly Edinborough, combined their talents as Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton, with Derek’s transformation turning him into his Dad’s mirror image and Kelly’s primary school pupils being left confused by her new look.
Brendan O’Neill made sure that Garth Brooks came to Halla na Feile following his failed gig in Croke Park. Brendan could easily stand in for his idol at any gig/photoshoot.
Denise Hickey gave everyone a ‘Million Reasons’ to clap for her following her unexpected Lady Gaga song choice.
Scotsman, Kevin Wilson, left female followers swooning at his version of ‘Rhythm of my Heart’ assisted by his six Pennys, backing singers Mairead Tarrant, Anne Heffernan, Carol Ferncombe, Averil Maher, Noirin Ni Mhaoldomhnaigh and Fiona Downey.
An explosive final act from Jennifer O’Dwyer as Tina Turner and Orla MacCullagh, Tricia Donnelly, Libby Toomey & Caroline Ryan as the ‘dancing’ Ikettes, added splendid colour to the event and finished the show in fabulous style.
The finale performance, Don’t Stop Believin was performed to the delight of the audience.
Huge credit is due to the organising committee, the acts and the various teams of people who worked tirelessly to ensure the event ran smoothly. Star Systems and Altec Productions brought their high level of expertise to deliver the utmost professional production, with sound, special effect lighting and an impressive LED screen which was the backdrop to all the performing artists.
Silver Dollar were a huge hit with the crowd that remained in the hall after the show finished. They undoubtedly helped party the night away and the celebrations continued long in to the early hours.
Coming from a parish which produced the Millennium Pageant (2000), Open-air Oklahoma (2010) and Open-air Strictly (2015), everyone is wondering what is on store for 2020. Something out of this world no doubt!