Tuesday 25 June 2019

Miriam O'Callaghan: 'I would not be interested in doing Six One - I have the job I want'

Pictured is Miriam O'Callaghan enjoying Stradbally’s ultimate party at CASA BACARDÍ 2017. BACARDÍ® rum returned to a sold out Electric Picnic, boasting a stellar line-up of international DJ’s as well as top home grown Irish talent.
Pictured is Miriam O'Callaghan enjoying Stradbally’s ultimate party at CASA BACARDÍ 2017. BACARDÍ® rum returned to a sold out Electric Picnic, boasting a stellar line-up of international DJ’s as well as top home grown Irish talent.
Bryan Dobson and Sharon Ní Bheoláin
Miriam O'Callaghan on Prime Time/ RTE One

Sean O'Grady

Miriam O'Callaghan has insisted she has no interest in replacing Bryan Dobson on the Six One.

Dobson (57) confirmed earlier this month that he would be leaving Ireland's most watched news show after 21 years to join Morning Ireland.

The long-standing anchor said he would "greatly miss" the show but felt the time had come to pursue new opportunities.

O'Callaghan, who has fronted current affairs programme Prime Time alongside Dave McCullagh since 1996, said she has no desire to take over.

Bryan Dobson and Sharon Ní Bheoláin
Bryan Dobson and Sharon Ní Bheoláin

"I would not be interested in doing Six One. That's the straight answer, because I have the job I want," said the RTE presenter.

"If someone said to me, 'What job do you want in Irish broadcasting?', I would say Prime Time and that's the truth.

"I've always stayed with them. I love it and I won't be leaving it."

Not long after Dobson's departure was announced, speculation was rife in Montrose that co-host Sharon Ni Bheolain may also quit the programme.

Miriam O'Callaghan on Prime Time/ RTE One
Miriam O'Callaghan on Prime Time/ RTE One

Ni Bheolain has worked on Six One alongside Dobson for 13 years, but has previously hinted that she was open to leaving, saying she was "looking for something new".

Other broadcasters suggested as potential replacements for Dobson include Ray Kennedy, Claire Byrne, Dave McCullagh and TV3's news anchor, Colette Fitzpatrick.

Two female co-anchors would be a first for Six One, but O'Callaghan believes the most important attribute the new presenter should possess is talent.

"I think talent outweighs anything else and whoever they pick will be great. Bryan and Sharon were both fabulous," she told the Herald.

O'Callaghan's radio show Sunday With Miriam enjoys high ratings, with nearly 250,000 listeners.

One of only a handful of Irish presenters to enjoy success on both television and radio, she finds the small screen slightly more challenging.

"Because of all the paraphernalia around you, it is probably more difficult," she said.

"On radio, I could literally sit there in a pair of runners and jeans and no one cares. You can concentrate on what people are saying.

"With television, you have to worry about how you look," she added.

"The radio is going great, a Top 10 show, so I am happy with that. It's a great team."

The mum-of-eight was speaking at the launch of the People of the Year Awards.

In its 43rd year, the competition sees family, friends and colleagues nominate ordinary people who have done extraordinary things.

The show will be broadcast on RTE One on Saturday, March 3 next year.

The public can submit details of their chosen nominee at peopleoftheyear.com.

The closing date for entries is Friday, December 1.

Herald

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