Kelly and Toibin: Celebrating St Patrick

Kelly and Toibin: Celebrating St Patrick

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New York City, Tavern on the Green, The Bushmills Inn




Transmission 17/03/1989


1hr 17min 15sec







Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)


Department for Communities, ITV, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

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It is illegal to download, copy, print or otherwise utilise in any other form this material, without written consent from the copyright holder.


Live from Bushmills and New York City (NYC), Niall Toibin and Gerry Kelly host this four-part programme celebrating the joys of Irish folk music, in time for St Patricks day!

Found in the "most beautiful corner, of the most beautiful island on earth" is the "world's oldest distillery", the Bushmills Inn. It is here, that the night kicks off with fiddle player Sean Maguire playing a tune for the bar. Back to NYC and Pete Seeger explains the heritage of Irish folk music and how, without it, there "wouldn't be American cowboy songs". 

A riveting performance from The Chieftains sets the tone for Richard Harris, who makes mention of the troubles of Ireland and the various charities he sponsors, in an effort to ease tensions. He finishes with a poem he wrote about the conflict on the island. Next, we meet Mary O'Donnell, a fashion designer who shows off her designs from the Irish film Love Spell (1979).

Part three and four introduce an assortment of famous faces from the Irish folk scene, including archive footage of the McPeake family in 1963. The programme concludes with Toibin reading a message from the White House, before the true celebration begin off camera for the one day each year that "everyone claims to be Irish!"

Shot List

[00:01:50. Introduction to programme; views of the countryside and waterfalls, sheep, deer, fishing boats, and New York City. Views of the New York Police Department (NYPD) and yellow taxi cabs. Scenes from rural Ireland and New York. [00:03:19] Part one. Welcome from presenter Niall Toibin [NT] from the Bushmills Inn, Co Antrim. Gerry Kelly [GK] presenting from the Tavern on the Green, New York. [00:04:33] Performance by fiddle player Sean Maguire. [00:07:37] Interview with Pete Seeger [PS]; discussion on folk music, Irish music, and traditions. PS performance of “All Mixed Up”. [00:13:40] “Song For Ireland” by Ralph McTell [RMcT]. [00:17:50] ND tells jokes. [00:21:50] Part two. GK welcome back. Performance by The Chieftains. [00:25:04] Interview with Richard Harris [RH]. Discussion on Ireland and education in the country; discussion on the scholarship RH has set up to improve education. Discussion on cross-community initiatives. RH performance of a poetry reading “There Are Too Many Saviours On My Cross”. Views of children and Celtic crosses. [00:36:02] Performance by Liam Clancy and “The Fairweather Band”. [00:40:21] Interview with Shivaun O’Casey; discussion on hr father Sean O’Casey. [00:43:09] Interview with Mary O’Donnell [MOD], fashion designer. Views of some of MOD’s fashion designs. [00:46:40] Performance by Tommy Sands and PS. [00:50:15] Part three. Performance by The Furey Brothers and Davey Arthur. [00:55:04] Interview with Peter Yarrow [PY] (from Peter, Paul and Mary). Performance of “Fair Ireland” by PY. [01:01:24] PY, Lucy Simon and PS performance. [01:06:45] Footage of a McPeake family performance from 1963. Performance by Francie McPeake and Francie McPeake Junior. [01:09:24] Performance by Bob Horan. [01:11:30] Part four. Performance by Phil Coulter, RMcT and Liam Clancy of “The Town I Love So Well”. [01:17:50] ND reading a message from the White House. Presentation of a cake from George Bush. [01:20:02] Performance by PS. 


An Ulster Television Production.

Hosted by Gerry Kelly and Niall Toibin

New York Director: Bruce Milliard

Bushmills Director: David Donaghy

Programme Associate: Tommy Sands

Executive Producers: Michael Beattie and Moore Sinnerton

Produced by David Donaghy

Other Contributors: Ralph McTell, Liam Clancy and “The Fairweather Band”, Shivaun O’Casey, Tommy Sands, The Furey Brothers and Davey Arthur, Peter Yarrow, Lucy Simon, Francie McPeake and Francie McPeake Junior, and Bob Horan. 

Ulster Television would like to thank:

The Tavern on the Green (New York City), The Bushmills Inn (County Antrim, Northern Ireland), Are Lingus, The Northern Ireland Tourist Board, The Old Bushmills Distillery, Bill McAndrew, Charles Comer, Maebeth Fenton,



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