Back in November my college sent us an e-mail asking if any students were interested in participating in a studio audience of the political debate show, The Claire Byrne Live. My friend and I jumped at the chance. Arriving at the RTE studio’s we sat waiting for about an hour while nursing coffee and teas that were handed to us on arrival. When we were called in and ushered to our seats, as is always the case, I noticed how small the studio was compared to what I was expecting. Sitting in our seats among fifty or so other people we waited for the host of the night to appear. Claire Byrne is a bit fab to be honest, she came out on to the floor and was the essence of a strong women. Doing journalism in college myself, it was hard not to admire her. She was straight talking but had a warmth to her, and conducted the show brilliantly while taking no bullshit.We left the studio around midnight and I found the whole experience fascinating.
Fast forward to January and I got an e-mail from The Late Late Show with an invitation to come along to one of the shows. To give you a bit of context, I knew my friend David Beattie would be appearing on the show and I had applied for tickets months previous. When I got the e-mail from the show offering me audience tickets I literally screamed out loud (thankfully I was in my sitting room at home). My family were in awe, shocked that I managed to get tickets since the chances of anyone winning them is a pure lotto game most of the time.
I chose to bring one of my closest friend who also happens to live in Dublin. We decided to make a night of it, so after getting glammed up in mine (I bought a new sparkly top from Oasis, reduced from €34 to €16 may I add); we headed in to town and ate at an Indonesian restaurant called Chameleon that was recommended by a friend. Stepping along the cobbled stones of Temple Bar, we found the restaurant tucked away by a side street. Upstairs, we were were able to choose between normal chairs and tables or go for an alternative option of sitting crossed legged on a cushions and a low table by the window. To try something different we went for the latter. Going tapas style, we picked out a few dishes to share alongside a bottle of wine. The food was incredible, with my favourite thing being the pork wontons.
With plenty of time on our hands we got a taxi from Stephens Green to the RTE studios. I was expecting this experience to be a lot different from the last time but it was pretty much the same, except instead of tea and coffee we were offered wine on arrival! The show was great fun, Ryan Tubrity was an entertaining host, especially during ad breaks (more on him later). And of course David did an amazing job and I was really happy to be there to support him (he even was able to spot me frantically waving at him from the audience)
After the show ended it felt a bit short lived, we were herded towards the front door to collect our audience prize of Aldi vouchers and that was it. Ryan had long since disappeared and his desk and seating area was roped off so no one could take a sneaky selfie. But after a quick call to David, he met us by the front door, escorted us past security and plonked us in the green room with him, his family, the other guests from the show and a free bar. What followed was one of the coolest nights I’ve ever had. I got to meet Ryan Tubrity and fangirled, my ears were treated to a impromptu session by Sharon Shannon, Finbar Fury and Lisa Canny, and I got a little bit tipsy (ok I was drunk) on the free wine.
Have you ever been in a studio audience for live TV?
If you ever do get the opportunity, definitely go, it’s an amazing experience and can be lots of fun!