Monday 23 July 2018

Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh films 'huge domestic row' with husband Ciaran for Irish language documentary

Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh. Picture: Frank McGrath
Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh. Picture: Frank McGrath
Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh and her husband Ciaran Byrne
Ciaran Byrne and Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh in 2011
Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh in 2015
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

If Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh does something onscreen, she wants it to be warts and all.

The tv presenter (47) is promoting her new documentary with RTE, Lig Liom, following her love of the Irish language, which can at times cause stress between her and her husband Ciaran Byrne, a music producer. She said the programme, which was filmed as part of a one off for St Patrick's Day, explores her relationship with the language and she struggles with patience when it comes to others who don't share her passion.

"If I lose my language, I’m nothing. That’s my identity, that’s me," she told the RTE Guide. "I’ve been called a GaelNazi. Think about that! The biggest thing I’ve noticed since I’ve returned to broadcast as Gaeilge is how comfortable it feels."

It seems particularly heated with her husband of 23 years and her hopes of making her children all fluent Irish speakers to carry on the language.

Ciaran Byrne and Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh in 2013
Ciaran Byrne and Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh in 2013

"I break down at the beginning of the programme. I’m crying as I say, 'I’m sick of trying to get you to like my language'," she says.

"Lig Liom is a very raw programme and it does contain a huge domestic row where Ciaran and I turn on each other and the cameras are left rolling.

"I’m going, 'You never learned the language, and now look where I find myself'. I married an English speaker and I thought that would be okay because we have all these Irish schools.

"I’ve never spoken English to my children but I’m still struggling for them to speak Irish to each other."

Ciaran Byrne and Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh in 2011
Ciaran Byrne and Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh in 2011

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