Friday 23 March 2018

Amy Winehouse's intimate Dingle gig to reach big TV audience

Amy Winehouse, sings live in St James Church, Kerry in 2006
Amy Winehouse, sings live in St James Church, Kerry in 2006

Ken Sweeney Entertainment Editor

JUST 70 lucky people were present when Amy Winehouse put on a spine-tingling show in Dingle five years ago.

But the intimate gig is now being brought to a wider audience as a critically-lauded television feature. The BBC's flagship arts programme 'Arena' will screen a one-hour special early next year on the 2006 concert in Kerry.

'When Amy Came To Dingle' is a co-production between the BBC and South Wind Blows, makers of the RTE's music series 'Other Voices'.

It features a six-song set and interview with the jazz singer, who was found dead in her London flat last July.

Recorded just a few months after the release of the 'Back To Black' album, the footage at St James' Church in Dingle records a singer at ease with herself and a world away from the personal problems which would lead to her untimely death.

The 'Other Voices' show on the intimate gig has already been a hit and has been screened on TV stations in Germany, Italy and the Middle East.

"Independent producers live on hopes and dreams," producer Philip King said. "I've been doing this a long time and it's very rare there is a commercial spin-off, but sometimes you get lucky and what we captured was an artist at the top of her game.

"Amy sang from her heart. What we witnessed was an artist there in body, mind and voice," he added.

"In the interview she did with John Kelly afterwards she revealed the influence of singers like Ella Fitzgerald and you got an idea of the huge canon of music she had absorbed and which was flying out of her," Mr King said.

South Wind Blows declined to say how much the worldwide success of the Winehouse TV special has been worth to the Irish company

But Mr King, who runs the independent filmmaker with partners Nuala O'Connor and Tina Moran, said it had put both Dingle on the map as well as their own TV series.

Irish Independent

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