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Blathnaid to get her own show on RTE after beating health scare

BLATHNAID Ni Chofaigh is being lined up for a return to television as a presenter of her own RTE show.

The 40-year-old told the Herald that she'll be returning to the small screen in September to front an interview-based show set to begin filming next month.

"It'll be a lengthy, interviews-driven programme about people who've made huge choices in their lives.

"I'm far more interested in talking to people who've made startling decisions in their lives and what the consequences of that choice are ... it'll be recorded as live, so there'll be no stopping and starting; I don't like that."

And apparently it won't be all the the former Afternoon Show co-host could be fronting.

"I've been told by my boss that I'm going to be busy; I think it's going to be all hands on deck ... a lot of contracts haven't been renewed, a lot of people are coming to the end of their contracts and you have to keep going," said the Meath broadcaster.

Unlike the majority of her colleagues at Montrose who are employed on a contractual basis, Blathnaid enjoys a staff job in RTE.



fortunate

"This time last year, I thought we were all safe, but now it's like, no, it's not so.

"It's very tight up there, but you have to keep going and keep churning it out ... and make do with fewer people and less money.

"I've always said that I'm fortunate.

"My circumstances are different, I can put a 24-minute [documentary] together and then turn around and host a show ... there's always something going on," she added.

The mum-of-four also spoke about her nerves ahead of her acting debut on TG4 drama Crisis, which will air in November and centres on a politician sent to Brussels.

The flame-haired TV personality took on the role after getting the all-clear from her doctors that she had made a full recovery from her recent health problems.

Blathnaid was forced to undergo a major procedure to remove half of her colon in January and took months to return to full strength.

She said that, while she thoroughly enjoyed her debut acting experience, she found the gig tough.

"It was a gruelling schedule, but it was incredibly fulfilling and liberating to be thinking about just this one thing, the character I was playing. When you're reporting or presenting, you're thinking of everything. It's so different to that.

"There are no similarities, but I loved it," she said.

"I'm very nervous about how people will respond... I found it really challenging. Learning lines sounds like the simplest thing but it's not at all ... Can I do this or not? You just don't know until you see it on the screen."

labutler@herald.ie