John Bishop cancels Mother Goose role in Dublin as he takes ‘compassionate leave’

Amy Donohoe

Comedian John Bishop is no longer performing on stage in Dublin this week as he has taken compassionate leave.

The Liverpool native is now being replaced by his understudy, Gabriel Fleary, who will play the role of Vic Goose alongside Ian McKellen as Mother Goose.

In a statement, the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre said: “We regret to announce that John Bishop is unable to appear in this week’s run of Mother Goose at Dublin’s Bord Gáis Energy Theatre.

“Mr Bishop has taken compassionate leave from the show. Gabriel Fleary, the Holby City and RSC actor and Mr Bishop’s standby, will play the role of Vic Goose alongside Ian McKellen as Mother Goose.”

Written by Coronation Street’s Jonathan Harvey and directed by Cal McCrystal, the show opens tonight, March 22, in Dublin and it will run until Sunday, March 26.

The pantomime tells the story of Mother Goose and her husband Vic, who run an animal sanctuary and live a wholesome life inside an abandoned Debenhams department store.

However, the sudden arrival of a goose causes upheaval. Meanwhile, it is unknown if Mr Bishop will attend the opening of Linda Martin’s dog sanctuary on March 24, as reported.

Along with Lord of the Rings star, Mr Bishop had planned to open the dog sanctuary near the airport this Friday.

Linda previously said: “Ian McKellen agreed to open it for me. I was told John Bishop’s wife has an animal sanctuary in England and he wants to come over as well.

“Louis Walsh and Rory Cowan will be there too. We’re going to have a really great day and I’m praying the rain stays off.

“There’ll be big welcomes and big thanks to those who made this possible for me. We’ll have a bit of a party as well.

“We’re doing things day by day at the minute. Things keep happening every day, someone else gets involved.”