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Late Late Show promises a 'slice of magic' in place of cancelled Electric Picnic as show returns for new season

The Late Late Show returns this week for its 59th season.

Image: Ruth Medjber/RTÉ

THE LATE LATE show returns to RTÉ One on Friday for its first episode of the season after its summer break.

Ryan Tubridy is set to return for his twelfth year as the host of the show, and said the show will “endeavour to bring a slice of the magic to you at home” for the weekend that would have seen thousands in Laois for Electric Picnic.

Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol, a band which was due to headline Electric Picnic, will perform on the Late Late Show on Friday night.

Veteran Cork rockers The Frank and Walters will also perform.

Irish Women in Harmony will be in the studio to perform after they topped official homegrown charts earlier in the summer with a cover of Dreams by The Cranberries in aid of Safe Ireland.

Elsewhere in the show, Tubridy will be joined by Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn to discuss how Ireland stands in terms of Covid-19 and what lies ahead as we move into the winter months.

Cousins Ellen Glynn and Sara Feeney will appear to discuss being rescued off the coast of Galway after their paddleboards drifted out to sea in August.

The cousins spent a night at sea while rescue organisations from around the country searched for them.

Fisherman and RNLI volunteer Patrick Oliver and his son, Morgan, rescued the women the next morning, and will also appear on the Late Late Show.

Tubridy will speak to Dr Samar Fatima Ali, the daughter of Dr Syed Waqqar Ali who was a frontline doctor in the Mater Hospital. 

Dr Syed Waqqar Ali died in July after contracting Covid-19 and spending three months in ICU.

His daughter, Dr Samar Fatima Ali, previously told RTÉ News that he was “incredibly dedicated to his profession and he lost his life to his profession”.

GAA commentator Mícheál Ó Muircheartaigh will be on the show from Croke Park to talk about the lost summer of the All-Ireland Championships.

Ó Muircheartaigh will look at the importance of Croke Park to Irish culture as the centenary of Blood Sunday approaches in November, and says that positivity has been the driving force in keeping him going for 90 years.

Tubridy said that he was “very excited” for the start of the Late Late Show’s 59th season.

“Much like everyone else in the country, we’ve had to recalibrate how we do things, but as ever we have a brilliant line-up of guests and musicians ready to go on Friday night.”

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“Friday nights are back,” he said.

The Late Late Toy Show is also due to return later in the year with a “radically different” show than usual.

Speaking at the launch of RTÉ’s autumn schedule, Tubridy said that the show is “operating at the moment with the view to everything being socially distanced, everything being as we know it now in terms of Covid rules”.

“I don’t anticipate anything changing between now and Christmas to be quite honest with you, I don’t see some sort of miraculous move towards people gathering,” he said.

Tubridy said that there will “definitely” be children in studio for the Toy Show, because the thought of doing a toy demonstration on Zoom “would just be too much for anyone”.

“It’s changed some things for the better, so we can get kids from around the world to audition online now. I mean that’s unusual, but it’s allowed them to participate. So it’s going to be a radically different type of Toy Show.”

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