Derry Girls Orla and Erin have a special message from their “bunker”

Two of the stars of the hit sitcom released a short video in character

Two of the stars of Derry Girls have released a hilarious new lockdown video — playing their characters from the hit sitcom.

Saoirse-Monica Jackson and Louisa Harland, who play Erin and Orla on the show, were able to make the video without breaking social distancing measures because they live in the same household.

The video was set in 1996, with the two characters reporting from an “underground bunker” that they had set up in an airing cupboard following orders to stay indoors from “the authorities” — or their “mammies”, as Orla puts it.

Rather than being a global pandemic that forces them to remain housebound, it is the political situation in Northern Ireland, with rioting occurring in the streets of Derry.

But the results are similar — with the pair forced to look for alternative means of entertainment given their inability to go outside, and Orla particularly fixated on eating Coco Pops.

The short clip contains much of the same humour that has made the sitcom such a huge hit with audiences and critics, with the pair squabbling and making references to the rest of the family, who are apparently upstairs watching Family Fortunes.

The clip went down a storm with fans on social media, with one viewer writing “First time I’ve laughed this week” and another tweeting “Can we get this as the official government message?”

Derry Girls has run for two critically acclaimed series, which are both currently available to stream on All4, while a third has already been commissioned and is expected to air later in 2020.

Source: Derry Girls Orla and Erin have a special message from their “bunker”

Julie Felix obituary

Folk singer whose TV appearances on The Frost Report in the 1960s made her a household name

Julie Felix performing at Westminster Abbey in London in 1966.

In 1966, at the height of the folk music boom in Britain, David Frost’s satirical television show The Frost Report featured a young American folk singer whose thoughtful songs, strong voice, charm and good looks endeared her to audiences, turning her into a household name. Within a year, Julie Felix, who has died aged 81, was hosting her own television series, with an impressive list of special guests.

Having landed in England in 1964, Felix performed in folk clubs in London, including the famous Troubadour in Earls Court, and on the strength of a tape of her singing that was sent to Decca, she was signed to the record label. Living on the third floor of a Chelsea block of flats, she was on her way to her debut album’s launch when she met Frost, a fifth floor resident, in the lift. Frost tagged along and, impressed by her singing, persuaded the BBC to engage her for his forthcoming television series.

In the meantime, Felix appeared on the Eamonn Andrews Show to sing the single Someday Soon from her eponymous first album; this was so popular with the television audience that she was invited back the following week. Taking a brief time out as a humanitarian ambassador for Christian Aid in Lebanon, Jordan and East Africa, Felix returned to London to appear at a sell-out solo concert at the Royal Albert Hall.

Two more albums followed quickly, leading the Times to call her “Britain’s first lady of folk”, thus ignoring her American origins. In 1967 Brian Epstein engaged Felix to perform with Georgie Fame: the Fame & Felix concerts were so successful that the weeklong run was extended to two weeks. Cat Stevens was the support.

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Back in the habit: Derry Girls star Siobhán McSweeney on playing a TV icon

If you only know Siobhán McSweeney from her role as Sister Michael on the smash hit Derry Girls, you might think that her natural home is the cool, curmudgeonly demeanour of her most famous character.

In life, however, there’s nothing sardonic about her. There’s a fierce, dazzling charisma that makes her an almost athletic conversationalist, someone who can bounce from big issues to big laughs without missing a beat. Aside from being an accomplished actress, Siobhán is that rare thing that Ireland is so good at producing and yet bad at rewarding: a great talker.
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