Theatre world mourns Lally death
Ireland's theatre world is mourning the loss of Mick Lally, one of its most renowned actors.
The 64-year-old star of stage and screen died in hospital earlier after a short illness.
Taoiseach Brian Cowen led tributes to the former teacher, who was most famous for his role as Miley Byrne in the long-running television series Glenroe.
"He was one of the most loved actors of his generation and will be dearly missed by the public and his colleagues in theatre and television," said Mr Cowen.
"Versatile in both the Irish and English languages, his genius at capturing and portraying the essence of the characters he played brought him wide popular and critical acclaim."
Lally co-founded the now Druid Theatre in Galway in 1975 with Garry Hynes and Marie Mullen and became an acclaimed stage actor who secured a part in the premiere of Brian Friel's play Translations in 1980.
Ms Hynes, Druid artistic director, described her colleague as a hero who she looked up to.
"Mick Lally was a man without measure," she said.
"Druid owes everything to him. If he hadn't agreed to join Marie and I in the summer of 1975 then Druid would not have existed."
Culture Minister Mary Hanafin extended her heartfelt sympathy to Lally's wife Peggy, their children Saileog, Darach and Maghnus.