Saturday 29 April 2017

Irish language is 'a glorious ornament' - Stephen Fry reaffirms his 'gra' for Gaeilge

Stephen Fry
Stephen Fry
Actor Stephen Fry raises a glass during filming of his cameo in the TG4 show 'Ros na Run'
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

Actor Stephen Fry has reaffirmed his 'gra' for the Irish language.

Fry, who had a cameo in TG4 soap Ros Na Run in 2011, will share a cupla focal on RTE series Random Acts As Gaeilge.

The series is to mark Seachtain na Gaeilge and will also feature cameos by Miriam O'Callaghan, model Nadia Forde, Paul Galvin and Stefanie Preissner, the writer of TV show Can't Cope/Won't Cope.

Each of the personalities will recount their love of the Irish language using whatever Irish they have, and all of the pieces will be recorded on their smartphones.

Stephen Fry preparing for his 'Ros na Run' scene with art director Sarah Leonard , director Marion Ni Loingsigh and actor Diarmuid Mac An Adhaistair
Stephen Fry preparing for his 'Ros na Run' scene with art director Sarah Leonard , director Marion Ni Loingsigh and actor Diarmuid Mac An Adhaistair

Fry begins his piece by saying: "Dia Dhuit, is mise Stephen Fry and you have heard more or less the extent of my Gaelic."

The actor talks about his love of the language and says he "grinds his teeth in envy" that he does not speak it fluently.

"I had the privilege of appearing in the Ros Na Run Irish drama and I have spent many happy days in the Gaeltacht areas," he said.

Fry said the language is kept alive through music and song.

"I think it's an immensely important part of being Irish and makes being Irish special," he said.

Fry also described the language as a "glorious ornament".

The 59-year-old has a deep connection with Ireland.

He has shot many films here and is a James Joyce and Oscar Wilde scholar - he played the latter in a biopic.

He filmed the scene in Ros Na Run when working on a BBC series about minority languages called Planet Word.

Aside from the video series there will also be a variety of radio and TV shows centring on Irish.

There will be bilingual news bulletins on 2FM and Seo Linn will play a live music session on the station following the release of their single called Rise.

RTE Archives will be sharing gems from its library including a 1968 clip featuring one of six American students who were in Cork to learn Irish.

A clip from 1964 shows members of the public discussing plans to make Galway an Irish-speaking city.

Herald

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