Twice the star power at the premiere of 'Once'
Will Armstrong, Carmel Mannion, Nicole Flattery, Clara Kumagai, Glen Hansard, John Harte and Yvonne Keating at the opening night of Once at the Gaiety Theatre on Tuesday. photographs: aidan crawley
THE SOCIAL NETWORK:Hot off Broadway, Once, the musical based on the Irish film of the same name, had its European premiere in Dublin on Tuesday before it goes to London. Cast and creative teams of both the movie and the musical seemed happy bedfellows at the Gaiety Theatre. The star of the film and the co-composer of the music, Glen Hansard, attended, as well as the film’s director, John Carney, who was accompanied by his girlfriend, the actress Marcella Plunkett, and his father, Martin.
The playwright Enda Walsh, who adapted Once for the stage, and the musical’s director, John Tiffany, who both won Tony awards for the show, were also present. Walsh divulged that he is working on a movie-musical with Rufus Wainwright.
“I’ve always loved people bursting into song. It’s very theatrical,” he said.
Paul Fahy and Gwen O’Sullivan of Galway Arts Festival, who programmed Walsh’s international hit Misterman in 2011, were excited to announce that Glen Hansard will perform at the festival this summer.
Pierce Brosnan, who was in town (see below), had got a call from the Danish film director Susanne Bier – with whom he worked on a new film, Love is All You Need – to see if he wanted to “go to the theatre”, and “hadn’t realised it was opening night” until he spotted the producer of Once, Barbara Broccoli. Broccoli, who also produced the last seven Bond movies, had attended the Academy Awards on Sunday, when Adele won Best Song for Skyfall. Hansard and his Once co-star, Markéta Irglová, had previously won an Oscar for Falling Slowly. Brosnan’s arrival almost (but not quite) overshadowed that of President Michael D Higgins and his wife, Sabina.
Carney is currently editing his new film,Can a Song Save Your Life?, which stars Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo. It will be released in the summer.
Also there were the former boxer Bernard Dunne and his wife Pamela. Dunne said he now spends his time “going to musicals and picking up the footwork”. He joked that he learnt a lot from Riverdance, too, as he chatted to its lead dancer, Padraic Moyles, and his wife, Niamh O’Connor. Moyles and O’Connor are involved in a new show called Heartbeat of Home, produced by John McColgan and Moya Doherty, as part of The Gathering.
Who we spotted: Yvonne Keating, who attended with the cinematographer John Conroy; Rory Cowan from Mrs Brown’s Boys and his mother, Esther, TV3’s Alan Hughes and Fair City actors Ciara O’Callaghan and Sarah Flood.