Thursday, August 23, 2012

THE KENNEDY'S OF CASTLEROSS

Using ‘A Fair Day’ from ‘An Irish Symphony’ by Hamilton Harty as its signature tune, The Kennedy’s of Castleross’ was a fifteen minute soap opera broadcast from 1955 until 1973 on Radio Eireann. The show was devised by the Arks Advertising Agency in Dublin as a vehicle for the Fry’s sponsorship of a radio programme on Radio Eireann. The first episode was broadcast on April 14th 1955 and the show was broadcast twice weekly on Tuesday and Thursday lunchtimes. According to former script writer Mark Grantham, the show was set in a midlands town around a small grocers shop owned by Mrs Kennedy. He recounted in the newspaper article that despite a cast of fourteen budget restrictions only allowed three actors per episode with Mrs Kennedy the only one to appear in every episode. Marie Kean played the role of Mrs Kennedy and she was paid two guineas per episode. The shows final broadcast was a one hour special on February 24th 1973.
Selected Cast Marie Kean played the role of the matriarch and shop keeper Mrs Kennedy, her son Brian played by TP McKenna and his wife Pat played by Angela Newman. Vincent Dowling played her other son Christy while Aideen O’Kelly played her only daughter Ellen who was married to the local doctor Dr. John Corrigan played by Norman Rodway. Other characters included Jim Lonergan played by Jim Fitzgerald and Pauline Delaney as Bridie O’Hanlon.

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