Sunday 21 January 2018

The top five moments that rocked the Rose of Tralee Dome through festival's history

Fiona Canavan mother of Realtin (then aged 7)
Fiona Canavan mother of Realtin (then aged 7)

Tanya Sweeney

What could possibly top the drama of Monday night on the Rose of Tralee? Well, we take a look at five moments through the festival's history that rocked the Dome.

1. In 2008, a pretty big rule change meant that single mothers could enter for the first time, and the first woman to step up to the plate was Fiona Canavan (below), mother of Realtin Canavan (then 7).

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Fiona Canavan mother of Realtin (then aged 7)

2. In 2013, the contest was hit with allegations of a fix after the winner's silverware, engraved with the name of the winner, was broadcast on live television - two days before the final. However, organisers said it was a "coincidence" that the silverware happened to be engraved with the name and crest of the Texas Rose, who won the event two days later.

3. In 2013, New Orleans Rose Molly Gambel found herself sharing the spotlight with boyfriend Kyle. Kyle had stormed the stage and asked his girlfriend to marry him. Her flustered reaction will live on in the annals of ROT history for years.

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Boyfirend Kyle Catlett proposes to his girlfriend the New Orleans rose Molly Molloy Gambel live on stage

4. Dublin Rose Siobheal Nic Eochaidh decided to do away with jigs and reels, performing a modern hip-hop dance to a somewhat bemused audience in 2011.

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Dublin Rose Siobheal Nic Eochaidh pictured during her Hip Hop dance routine on stage at the Rose of Tralee in Tralee last evening.Pic Frank Mc Grath

5. In 1998, Luzveminda O'Sullivan became the contest's first mixed-race Rose (hailing from Mayo, she was the Philippines Rose, to reflect her Irish-Filipino identity). Philadelphia Rose Sinead De Roiste, became the first African-American contestant in 2004.

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Gay Byrne and Luzveminda O'Sullivan

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