Community Radio and Lake Production join forces to produce The Liam Mac Carthy story

A touch of the masters hand’...James Kelly puts the finishing touches to the Mac Carthy Cup

Recently, Community Radio Kilkenny City, premiered a specially commissioned piece by Barrie Henriques, delving into the story of the Liam Mac Carthy cup.

Broadcast in thirty-minute segments, over four consecutive nights, the author followed a unique path and told the story through the eyes of the cup itself.

To deliver this inventive concept, CRKC utilised the in-house talent to direct produce and broadcast the programme.

The major acting roles were entrusted to Lake Productions duo, Derek Dooley as the intrepid reporter, and Ger Cody as Liam Mac Carthy.

Prior to broadcast, hurling aficionados, well versed in GAA lore, wondered if this play could deliver any new insights to the Liam Mac Carthy story.

Presumptions received a rude awakening. Enthusiasts were amazed by the detailed discovery of previously unexplored information.

From its beginning in the depths of The Andes mountains to its presentation a few months ago , the Liam Mac Carthy Cup has enjoyed a hectic Grand Prix lifestyle. The author has traversed every step of that exciting road to reveal the complexities and facts that surround the iconic trophy.

It was a delight to listen to James Mary Kelly, the Kilkenny silversmith who crafted the cup.

He spoke enthusiastically about the contract negotiations and regaled us with stories of the many visitors who came to his works in the Castle Yard.

For many, handling the Mac Carthy Cup was an emotional experience that brought tears of joy.

James recounted the role of former GAA president Nickey Brennan , who was integral to the contract deliberations.

With commendable foresight , Nickey ordered two Mac Carthy Cups, one specifically for ceremonial purposes.

The silversmith revealed another interesting fact : Des Byrne, who crafted the Sam Maguire Cup, was also based in the Castle Yard, Kilkenny.

And so, the Liam Mac Carthy story evolved, taking on a life of its own

Beginning with Liam Fennelly from Ballyhale Shamrocks , the only man to receive the old and the new Mac Carthy Cups, right up to Declan Hannon who received the cup in 2021 on behalf of the Treaty County.

In the interim, its annual presentation and homeward journey crisscrossed the country telling tales of sporting excellence and encompassing a plethora of raw emotional speeches, local songs and colourful anecdotes.

The Liam Mac Carthy Cup holds a revered place in the heart of Ireland’s sporting culture and Barrie Henriques distinctive touch add further lustre to the accumulated glory.

This co-production between Community Radio Kilkenny City and Lake Productions resonated with the audience and and proved an unqualified success.

Afterwards, CRKC was inundated with complimentary phone calls and texts.

Station manager Declan Gibbons, in lauding the drama, insisted the professionalism of the programme filled him with pride and that the production embellished the station’s community ethos.

Programme Editor Mick Cummins was equally effusive as he acknowledged the encyclopaedic sporting knowledge of author Barrie Henriques .

Thanking Ger Cody and Derek Dooley of Lake Productions, he maintained that their nuanced understanding brought the project to life.

Finally, he had a special word of praise for Pat Treacy and his CRKC colleagues for their commitment and enthusiasm.

On behalf of Lake Productions , Emily Kelly said they were “thrilled to be involved in such an innovative endeavour that brought so much enjoyment”


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