Rory's raring to get into Olympia panto role as dame - oh, yes he is
Rory Cowan has said he can't wait to get stuck into his new role in the Olympia Christmas panto.
The former Mrs Brown's Boys star said that playing the dame in the new production of Polly and the Beanstalk was a challenge he's relishing.
He replaces comedian Al Porter.
Speaking to the Herald last night about joining the Applegreen Christmas spectacular, Rory said: "I'm looking forward to it. It's going to be fabulous.
"I played the Olympia many times in the past with Mrs Brown's Boys and it's a theatre I love.
"And working over the Christmas period is going to be great.
"It means I won't have to listen to all my friends and neighbours asking why I don't have a Christmas tree or decorations up."
This year's panto was written by Karl Spain and will run at the Olympia from December 15 until January 14.
Rory revealed he will be starting rehearsals next Monday.
He went on to heap praise on his co-stars, including Dustin the Turkey.
"I've been a big Dustin fan for over 20 years and to be actually working with him is going to be brilliant," he said.
"It's also going to be great to be working with Ryan Andrews and Michaela O'Neill.
"Because of my background I rarely got to work with new people. It was usually always the same group, which wasn't a bad thing, but working with new people is exciting."
Rory also described how different his Christmas will be now that he will no longer be doing the Mrs Brown's Boys tour.
"This Christmas I won't be finishing a long UK tour a week or two before Christmas, which meant I was really exhausted over Christmas," he said.
"This year it's going to be great. I've had a good break from touring and I'll also be working in my home city, which means I get to sleep in my own bed. That's a luxury."
The 58-year-old also joked that because he will be working he will miss out on the usual festive celebrations.
"I'll get to miss all those Christmas parties too. I sound like a grumpy old man, don't I?
"But at my age the fun of Christmas parties is long gone. Have you noticed that you never lose the inner child in you and you still get the excitement of going to a panto every Christmas?
"And this year I'm actually in one, in the Olympia. How fabulous is that?"
Rory has spread his wings considerably since leaving the cast of Brendan O'Carroll's hit series last summer.
As well as continuing to provide the voice-overs on TV3's hit series Gogglebox Ireland, he has branched out into social media and has been keeping his fans updated on his life with YouTube videos.
He has big plans for next year too.
"Well, I hope I'll be doing Gogglebox Ireland again. I love working on that. It's such a laugh," he said.
"My New Year's resolution is that I want to do more work on telly, so I'm going to pile on weight and see if I can get on Operation Transformation."