Tag Archives: northern ireland

Chatting with Pamela on UTV Life’s famous sofa

Jimmy Cricket appeared on UTV Life

Jimmy Cricket was a guest on Northern Irish television programme UTV Life recently.

The famous Belfast-born entertainer, described in the preview material as a “comedy legend”, talked to chat show host Pamela Ballentine.

UTV is a commercial television broadcaster in Northern Ireland owned and operated by ITV plc as part of the ITV Network.

The show featuring Jimmy can be viewed here.

Pamela is one of Northern Ireland’s best-known presenters, renowned for her friendly hosting skills on some of television’s most popular shows, including Friday evening’s UTV Life which draws a weekly plethora of A List stars who join her for a chat on her famous sofa.

Banjo duo, dancers and the three-tenner sketch at Stockport’s The Plaza

Stockport's Plaza Theatre

Jimmy Cricket returned to The Plaza variety theatre in Stockport at the weekend to do his fourth show there.

Other acts included Shep’s Banjo Duo and dancers from the Stockport-based Debut Arts academy.

The famous comedian, 72, had last performed there in January 2016 and was clearly delighted to be back.

Afterwards he tweeted: “Wonderful Sunday afternoon performing alongside Howard and Steve, Shep’s Banjo Duo, Debut Arts Academy, with Ted Doan Manager and actor who took the lead in the, “The 3 Tenner Sketch”, my thanks goes to Stage, Sound and Lighting, Lawerence, Ben and Pam.”

LEP column: Here’s to the king of comedy writers

Jimmy Cricket's Lancashire Evening Post columnJimmy Cricket remembers legendary comedy writer and close friend, the late Eddie Braben, in one of his recent newspaper columns.

Edwin ‘Eddie’ Charles Braben was best known for providing material for Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise. He also worked for David FrostRonnie Corbett and Ken Dodd.

He was credited with changing the profile of Morecambe and Wise, helping to turn them into one of the most popular and enduring comedy acts in the history of British entertainment.

Belfast-born entertainer Jimmy, who has lived in Rochdale for many years, recalls in the Lancashire Post how Eddie started out as a market trader, selling fruit and veg from a stall in Liverpool’s St John precinct. In his spare time, he made up jokes.

Jimmy says how nervous he was when he first met Eddie, adding: “That was the start of a beautiful friendship that spanned two TV series, five radio series and even a book of letters from my Mammy.”

Northern Irish comedian Jimmy developed a lasting friendship with Eddie who sadly died aged 82 in May 2013. Below is a newspaper article in which Jimmy paid tribute to his old pal at the time.

Jimmy Cricket pays tribute to Eddie Braben in the Rochdale Observer

East Riding Film Festival: Jimmy Cricket to talk about The Quiet Man

Jimmy Cricket will be appearing in a film festival at Bridlington SpaJimmy Cricket will be talking about his favourite film to a live audience at a festival on the East Yorkshire coast later this year.

The famous entertainer will be taking part in the East Riding Film Festival, which arranges for celebrities, film-makers and those with a deep knowledge of their subject to introduce films of their choosing.

Jimmy, 71, will be talking about The Quiet Man at the Bridlington Spa theatre on Sunday 12 November.

It will be followed by a question-and-answer session.

John Ford’s 1952 classic film starred legendary actors John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara, who was an Irish-born American actress and singer. A comedy drama, it won an Oscar for the best cinematography that year. All the support actors were from the famous Abbey Theatre in Dublin.

You can buy a ticket to hear Jimmy talking about the film in November here.

Omagh pub, John Wayne & Dublin’s Abbey Theatre

Jimmy Cricket has been recalling when he and his wife May came across a distinctive Northern Irish pub which is themed on a legendary film.

The famous entertainer made the recollection in a recent monthly column in the Preston-based Lancashire Evening Post.

He and Mrs Cricket noticed the pub, which has a thatched roof, while he was working at the nearby Strule Arts Centre theatre in Omagh.

The Sean Ogs pub is themed like the one in John Ford’s 1952 classic film The Quiet Man starring legendary actor John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara, who was an Irish-born American actress and singer.

A black and white photograph on the wall of the pub shows the cast of the 1952 movie, as Jimmy, 71, discovered it was the setting for much of the action. The film, a comedy drama, won an Oscar for the best cinematography that year.

All the support actors were from the famous Abbey Theatre in Dublin.  It is also known as the National Theatre of Ireland and first opened its doors to the public on 27 December 1904.

Jimmy Cricket’s nostalgic return to west Belfast

Jimmy Cricket and Owen O'NeillA recent nostalgic trip down Memory Lane for Jimmy Cricket was the subject of a BBC radio programme.

The famous Northern Irish entertainer returned to west Belfast, where he was born nearly 71 years ago, to tell fellow comedian and BBC Radio Ulster presenter Owen O’Neill all about his childhood.

In his radio series, Owen spends the day with a well-known local face as they show him around a place that they hold in affection, uncovering stories about their home territory.

And last month Rochdale-based Jimmy took Owen to his childhood home off the Andersonstown Road, which included playing the saxophone on the street corner where he used to perform with his mates.

They also went to the former family-run bar where much-loved funnyman Jimmy cut his teeth telling jokes to the customers.

BBC Radio Ulster posted the following tweet about Jimmy’s return home.

BBC Radio Ulster (@bbcradioulster)
In a new series Owen O’Neill spends the day with @jimmy__cricket on home turf in West Belfast. Saturday at 10:30am bbc.in/2uLCFd9 pic.twitter.com/0qWvmSJOM1

Finding a ‘little gem’ near Omagh’s Strule theatre

Jimmy Cricket outside the thatched pub in Omagh

Jimmy Cricket

Jimmy Cricket and his wife May recently came across a pub with a thatched roof while working at the nearby Strule Arts Centre theatre in Omagh. 

Sean Og’s pub is themed like the one in John Ford’s 1952 classic film The Quiet Man starring legendary actor John Wayne and the wonderful Maureen O’Hara, who was an Irish-born American actress and singer.

Famous Northern Irish entertainer Jimmy, 71, described Sean Og’s pub as a “little gem”.

Jimmy Cricket behind the bar!

BBC Radio Ulster show on Jimmy’s Belfast roots

rish comedian Owen O’NeillJimmy Cricket has been invited to guest in a new radio series for BBC Radio Ulster called The Town I Love So Well .

The series will comprise half-hour radio programmes presented by Irish comedian Owen O’Neill (left), who is a popular Northern Ireland-based writer, actor and comedian.

Each episode of the series will feature a well-known celebrity from Northern Ireland being interviewed by Owen in and around their home town and surrounding areas.

In Jimmy’s case the programme will look back at his childhood and formative years growing up in West Belfast. This episode will feature locations which have significant memories for Jimmy and they will provide an interesting backdrop and talking point for his discussions with Owen.

Famous comedian Jimmy, 71, will be recording his programme on 23 May and the show will be broadcast on BBC Radio Ulster one Saturday morning at 10.30 am – date to be confirmed.

BBC Radio Ulster

You Must Be Joking 2016 plays to several sellouts

Jimmy Cricket, John Linehan (AKA May McFettridge), Gene Fitzpatrick and William CaulfieldJimmy Cricket has just finished a tour of his native Northern Ireland with a comedy show called You Must Be Joking.

He featured alongside three fellow Ulster comedians, John Linehan (AKA May McFettridge), Gene Fitzpatrick and William Caulfield.

The tour was born out of the 2014 Cookstown Comedy Festival, as the line-up was put together for the first time there with huge success.

Jimmy CricketThis merited a full tour of the province in 2015, with this year’s edition continuing its popularity with shows at Grand Opera House in Belfast and the Millennium Forum in Derry,  as well as at some of the major towns in the province.

The crowds were marvellous and large in number everywhere, even to the point where several venues were sold out, including the Ardhowen Theatre in Enniskillen.

The latest series of shows were organised by Northern Ireland’s leading tour promoter, David Hull Promotions.

Jimmy said: “I have known David for a number of years, having first worked for him during the mid-80s when I first launched myself on to the national stage.

“I would like to thank David for making You Must Be joking 2016 happen and for being a great friend and colleague over the years!”

BBC’s Stephen Nolan joins Jimmy’s juggling act!

BBC radio presenter Stephen Nolan tries a bit of unusual juggling

Jimmy Cricket got a well-known BBC presenter to take part in one of his juggling gags live on air.

The famous comedian  appeared on BBC Northern Ireland’s popular current affairs television show Nolan Live on Wednesday, 3 June.

It is hosted by Stephen Nolan, who is often heard on BBC Radio 5 live presenting the station’s evening programme at the weekend.

Stephen’s show in Northern Ireland is a mix between topical debate and chat – he holds a panel discussion during one part of the programme, with the other section devoted to talking to a special guest.

Jimmy Cricket and Stephen Nolan on BBC Northern Ireland's Nolan Live show

Jimmy did a short performance during his appearance and was joined on stage by Stephen who helped him with one of his juggling sketches.

Stephen then had a short interview with Jimmy, asking him about the contrast between him as a family comedian and other comics who have to resort to more edgy material.

“He also asked me what I was up to and I managed to grab a mention of my upcoming national tour with the Osmonds, which is due to take place in December later this year,” said Jimmy, 69.

Jimmy’s appearance can be watched until the end of June on the BBC’s online playback facility, iPlayer, at http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b05xgngj/nolan-live-series-4-episode-4

Jimmy Cricket on Stephen Nolan's Nolan Live show