A Question of Taste: Gavin O' Connor

GAVIN O’CONNOR is from Blarney, Co Cork, and plays the role of Fianna Fail politician, Seán Doherty, in the series Charlie, which begins on RTÉ One on Sunday.

A Question of Taste: Gavin O' Connor


Best recent book: I’ve just finished reading Behan In the USA, by Dave Hannigan, which is a rip-roaring account of Brendan Behan’s rise and fall in the US. Best recent film: From an Irish standpoint, I thought Lenny Abrahamson’s Frank was wonderful.

Best recent show/performance/ you’ve seen: A Mano — a Spanish hand-puppet theatre piece, which used simple lighting and clay figures moulded in real time, with the hands becoming part of the characters. It was stunning. What formats do you access music? iTunes, radio and I still buy CDs to play in the car. I’m turning into my dad! No bad thing.

Best piece of music you’ve been listening to lately: Anatomy Of A Goddess — Ken Cotter. It’s a concept album inspired by James Joyce’s Ulysses and it’s beautiful. I don’t know why, but I’ve started to appreciate the Rolling Stones a lot more, too, as I’ve gotten older.

First ever piece of music or art that truly moved you: Cinema Paradiso moved me so much that the ‘Love Theme’ was played at my wedding. I’m such a softie. I blubbed like a baby during that final scene.

Tell us about your TV viewing: I watch Netflix and box-sets quite a lot. Currently, I’m watching The Wire for the second time. My favourite TV series ever. No argument.

Best recent holiday: I went on the Wild Atlantic Way to the Ring Of Kerry, using Waterville as my base and it was breath-taking. It’s a good job, too, as I did the voice-over on the Wild Atlantic Way promo!

Your best celebrity encounter: I was in a club once and there was a piano player knocking out a few tunes. I was goaded by my friends to give a blast, and I did. When I finished, I was making my way back down to my seat, when this man wrapped his arms around me and paid me a compliment. I said thanks and realised it was Ronnie Wood, from the Rolling Stones, which was very cool.

Best animal encounter: I had to study an animal in drama school and present it as a piece of movement. I picked an elephant, thinking I was being clever, as it didn’t move much. Not as clever as one guy in my class, who picked a hippo who was always asleep, and when he presented it in class he just lay on the floor for 15 minutes.

Most expensive item of clothing you’ve ever bought: A Paul Smith tuxedo. Can’t remember how much, but too expensive. A Celtic Tiger purchase, when we all thought we were bullet-proof. Tech habits: Smartphone for everything. I couldn’t live without my iPhone. It’s a veritable mobile office in your hand.

If in company, though, it has to be put away. If I’m on a night out, I want it to be with you and not the top of your head stuck in your phone. For apps, I love Twitter. It’s the first source of news for me and, also, it can be great craic. With the people I follow on Twitter, it’s a source of much amusement daily.

Weekend treat: I try to have a family lunch each weekend. I also have a great group of friends, as well, who I try to meet once a week for a pint, if I’m not working. If there’s a hurling or rugby match on, all the better. I love the pure drama of Irish sporting events.

The Munster final being a particular favourite. Health and fitness: I played a lot of sport growing up, so fitness has always played a part in my life. Now, I go to the gym. It’s important as an actor to stay in shape. It’s good mentally, too, and the treadmill is great for learning lines.

Unsung hero — individual or group you think don’t get the profile/praise they deserve: CASA. The Care And Share Association. They provide respite for people with disabilities. Since volunteering a small bit, I saw first-hand the crucial, but sadly underfunded, work they do. They really are a very special bunch of people and I was humbled by the work they do.

You are king for a day — what’s your first decree? Eradicate homelessness.

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