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So what if it was twee TV, I really enjoyed the experience - Miriam

RTE star Miriam O'Callaghan has defended RTE's The Gathering show, saying she found the Americans' positivity refreshing.

The mum-of-eight took centre stage at the O2 on Friday night for The Gathering: Notre Dame -- A Welcome Home, which some described as "corporate hokum."

The event also attracted lots of unfavourable comments on social network Twitter, with many viewers describing the event as old-fashioned and twee.

However, Miriam said she had been thrilled with the night and revealed how she found the visitors' enthusiastic attitudes a nice change in the current climate. Dressed in a red lace dress by one of her favourite designers, Marion Murphy-Cooney, she said she found it a great experience.


"I really enjoyed hosting the O2 show on Friday night. It was so exciting to be in a venue where there's an audience of 10,000 people. The Americans were so warm and upbeat and positive -- they were a tonic," she told the Diary.

The Prime Time presenter hosted the Irish/American entertainment night to kick off the American Football season in Ireland.

A 90-minute show broadcast at 9.30pm on Friday and attended by Taoiseach Enda Kenny, it combined a traditional pep rally with performances from a host of stars.

Among those on the bill were Brian Kennedy, Damien Dempsey, Eimear Quinn and the High Kings, alongside the Notre Dame Band and Folk Choir.

An estimated 35,000 flocked to the capital city over the weekend to see Notre Dame's 50-10 win over Navy, giving a massive boost to the local economy.