A walk on the wild side
Ireland's answer to David Attenborough, Colin Stafford-Johnson will share stories with Sligo wildlife lovers tonight (Tuesday) from his 30-year career filming wildlife around the world.
The multi-award winner is the foremost nature and wildlife cinematographer and presenter in Ireland today.
For the first time ever, he's stepping out from behind the camera and in front of live audiences as part of a nationwide tour 'Living the Wild Life' in 15 venues nationwide.
The theatrical tour is his first foray into live performance. Up until now, he's been just "speaking into the camera chatting to a buddy" but now he talking in front of audiences of up to 500 people.
"I get audience feedback on Facebook but it's great to meet people face to face. Before, during and after the show they get to meet me. It's light-heart and very casual. The aim is to meet as many people as I can," he told The Sligo Champion.
Colin has lived with wildlife first hand, from filming tigers at close range in India to touring Ireland in his camper van. His shows 'Secret Life of the Shannon', 'Wild Ireland, Edge of the World' and 'Living the Wildlife' have led to adventures in every corner of the country - all of which he's willing to share with us in the Hawk's Well Theatre tonight.
Originally from Cabinteely in Dublin (it was then a village), Colin grew up rambling the fields of South Dublin and Wicklow.
"I had a very free childhood. There were five siblings (including Rachel who's a nurse in Sligo University Hospital) and we were given great freedom to out and explore, find frog spawn, run wild and free," he said.
He wasn't surprised at the recent adult Fin Whale which washed up off Trá Bhuí near Templeboy, West Sligo last week.
"There are loads of them out there now off the continental shelf. I've filmed more than 20 of them in one day and seen more than five species in one day. We've got some of the best whale-watching in the world here!" he said.