The stars of surprise hit movie The Commitments will perform together again today for the first time in almost 20 years — and are preparing to take to the stage in Belfast.
Nearly two decades after they burst onto the big screen, the group's original members will resume their places in the soul revue for a short set as part of a news conference in Dublin's Liberty Hall theatre today to announce three dates around Ireland next year, marking the 20th anniversary of the film's release.
Only original backing singer Maria Doyle Kennedy will be missing, as Glen Hansard, Andrew Strong, Robert Arkins, Michael Aherne, Angeline Ball, Dave Finnegan, Bronagh Gallagher, Felim Gormley, Dick Massey and Ken McCluskey reveal news of the dates in March next year.
A film adaptation of a novel of the same name by author Roddy Doyle, the movie won a BAFTA for best film and became a worldwide hit on release in 1991, telling the story of a gang of unemployed Dubliners who form a soul band.
Promoter Darryl Downey is the man behind the 2011 reunion tour, having spent months in discussions with the stars of the original film to see if they would perform a tour next year to mark the film's anniversary.
Sources say that original members are said to have agreed to the tour just for the “vibe” of regrouping with their former co-stars for live dates around St Patrick's Day next year in Belfast, Dublin, Killarney and Castlebar.
They say that although the live dates being announced today are only in Ireland, promoters have an eye to taking the tour overseas.