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Saturday 22 July 2017

Al wants everyone to love 'shiny, silly fun' in Blind Date revival

Al Porter leapt at the chance to present Blind Date, the show that was made famous by the late Cilla Black
Al Porter leapt at the chance to present Blind Date, the show that was made famous by the late Cilla Black

Al Porter has been unveiled as the new matchmaker in town. The Today FM presenter will be taking a trip down memory lane this autumn when he reprises the dating show made famous by the late Cilla Black by fronting the new Blind Date on TV3.

The Tallaght funnyman said that he is "beyond delighted" at the opportunity to take on the show.

Laughed

"I leapt at the chance to do it," he said.

"Since I was a kid on stage in the Olympia, all I've ever wanted to do was cheer people up and entertain as many people as possible.

"I remember watching shows like Blind Date as my Mam ironed and my Nana laughed and it was doing just that - cheering us all up."

It is Al's first foray into mainstream television, having previously appeared on a number of comedy shows in the UK.

He currently presents an afternoon show on Today FM.

The original programme, which turned singer Cilla into a TV superstar, was screened on ITV and ran for nearly 20 years before bowing out in 2003.

The show sees one singleton pick from a panel of three possible suitors as they ask them a series of saucy questions.

The twist in the show is that the person can't see any of the contestants until they have made their final decision and chosen the person they most want to go on a date with.

Al said the fun-filled entertainment show was exactly the kind of programme he wanted to be involved in.

"To think I've the opportunity to be welcomed into people's homes each week on TV3 for a bit of shiny, silly fun is a privilege. I hope people love it," he said.

"The most fun for me is that, like my panto and radio work, Blind Date on TV3 will be broad, fun, family entertainment."

TV3 bought the rights to Blind Date in 2014 and Lucy Kennedy was originally lined up to present it.

There was much disappointment among fans of the show after the station decided not to pursue it any further.

Kennedy has now started filming the new series of her hit TV3 programme Livin' With Lucy, which sees her moving into a celebrity's house for the week- end.

Blind Date has been revived by Belfast-based media company Stellify Media.

Unmissable

It will also produce the UK version of the show for Channel 5 which will star Paul O'Grady, with Melanie Sykes providing the voiceover commentary.

Stellify's Kieran Doherty described the show as a "compelling mix of humour, love and jeopardy, making it unmissable viewing for the whole family".

The show is expected to be one of the highlights of TV3's autumn schedule, and filming is due to begin soon.

Any interested singletons wanting to take part can apply online by logging on to tv3.ie/blinddate

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