Jedward, Tina Turner, Kylie Minogue and Neil Diamond performed some of their greatest hits at a truly star studded variety show in Carrick-on-Suir last Saturday night.
And they were joined on stage at the Stars In Their Eyes concert at the Carraig Hotel by a dazzling line up of other pop and showbiz legends from Shirley Bassey and Dolly Parton to Freddie Mercury and Britney Spears.
But many of the famous singers looked a tad different from their usual polished images displaying hairy legs and chests, not to mention a stubbly chin or two underneath the thickly layered make-up.
It wasn’t a bad hair day for the stars but a game for a laugh group of local singers, who dressed up as some of their favourite pop stars to perform at the concert in aid of the Niall Mellon Township Trust.
The hotel’s ballroom was packed to capacity for the sell out E10-a-ticket fundraiser and many were unable to get their hands on tickets for the show attended by an estimated 300 people.
Those who did manage to get in weren’t disappointed. Among the highlights were the Walsh sisters Irene and Helen’s performance as Jedward and St Nicholas Parish curate Fr Richard Geoghegan gamely donning a dress, heels and wig to perform as the great Shirley Bassey.
The audience was also treated to Paula O’Dwyer’s Tina Turner, Cllr Sylvia Cooney-Sheehan as Dolly Parton, Benny Raggett as Britney Spears, James Dowley as Amy Winehouse and Bobby Landers strutting his stuff as a very colourful Kylie Minogue.
Michael Raggett took on the persona of Neil Diamond, Vida Coady Norris was Freddie Mercury and the shoes of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Kenny Rogers were filled by Jimmy Fahy, Spud Murphy and Kevin Harrigan respectively.
Local dance troupe “Sublime Vibex”, under the direction of Megan Raggett, provided backing vocals, dancing and interval entertainment at the concert, which was followed by a disco.
The Stars In Their Eyes concert was organised by a committiee led by Marion Landers from Woodland Heights, Carrickbeg, who is travelling to Capetown as part of a team of 600 Irish volunteers in November to take part in the Niall Mellon Building Blitz.
Marion needs to raise E5000 to take part in the campaign building homes for poor families living in townships and the money raised by the show has achieved her target.
She thanked everyone involved in organising the concert and other fundraising events and all who contributed to the cause.
Marion thanked, in particular, Kay McAuley and Mala Raggett, who helped her set up the fundraising committee for her Niall Mellon Trust campaign. She paid tribute to Mala Raggett for her work in directing the Stars in Their Eyes show with the help of her daughters Megan and Ruth and also to the DJ Dermot Keyes. She also thanked Ann Grace (nee Kavanagh) for her trojan efforts selling raffle tickets.
“It was an absolutely brilliant night that involved all local volunteers of all ages. It was a real community effort and everybody is still talking about it and want to see it happening again,” she told The Nationalist.
Marion said the fundraising committee won’t be disbanding and plans to organise other fundraising events in the future for other local causes.