Saturday 21 September 2019

Miriam ringing in the new as she hosts RTÉ's 50th anniversary TV bash

I can reveal that Miriam O'Callaghan is to be the host of RTÉ's 50th anniversary party this New Year's Eve.

President Michael D Higgins and Jedward are among the names featuring on the invite list to the major live TV event that the state broadcaster is staging to celebrate its golden jubilee.

Prime Time presenter Miriam took on the job despite comments from veteran broadcaster Gay Byrne to this column that "New Year's Eve TV audiences were grumpy" and: "You get a bad reaction from them, no matter what you do."

An insider told The Diary: "Miriam has a great team behind her to make sure that not only will the guests in the studio have a great time, so will the viewers at home."

Producers face only one last problem: with the most famous faces from RTÉ TV from the past 50 years booked to appear on the programme, they will have to do without the biggest of them all: Gay Byrne.

It seems unlikely that he will turn up. Gay told me: "The last place I want to be on New Year's Eve is on TV. There are people who hate New Year's Eve and I'm one of them."

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