Cutting edge style for Flatley’s bride-to-be

HAIRDRESSER Donna Black was sharpening her scissors last night, ahead of the social wedding of the year today.

Donna, who works at Top Style Salon in Fermoy, Co Cork, will style Niamh O’Brien’s hair this morning before she ties the knot with multi-millionaire dance star Michael Flatley this afternoon.

Donna said she and her team were really looking forward to meeting the bride, her sisters and matrons of honour, Aoibheann and Derval, and the other four bridesmaids at Flatley’s plush Castlehyde home this morning.

They will spend several hours styling the girls’ hair, before Niamh walks up the aisle in a spectacular wedding gown — reported to have cost €100,000 — at 2pm.

The 32-year-old, who first met Flatley on the Riverdance set in 1993, will be chauffeured from Castlehyde with her father, Thomas, to St Patrick’s Church in a black and silver Rolls Royce Phantom, which 48-year-old Flatley bought specially for the occasion.

Hundreds of locals are expected to turn out to catch a glimpse of the widely anticipated wedding.

Fr Aidan Troy will celebrate the low-key ceremony, along with local parish administrator, Fr Anthony O’Brien.

Fr Troy said he will deliver a short homily. “It will point out that they are ministers of the sacrament and that I, and all the guests, are the witnesses and we want to do the very best for them,” he said.

Final preparations were in full swing yesterday at the church and at Castlehyde, on the banks of the Blackwater, for the ceremonies which are estimated to cost a cool €1 million.

Mr Flatley was there enjoying some time with close family, including his parents, Michael Snr and Elizabeth, his brother and best man Patrick, and his sisters Liza, Annie and Thomasina, who jetted in from Chicago.

Members of the O’Brien family arrived at Castlehyde from Co Meath in an 18-seat Sikorsky helicopter.

Flatley’s publicist Geraldine Roche said Michael was in a very relaxed mood and was really looking forward to the wedding. They all enjoyed a low-key party last night.

A friend of Niamh’s also arrived at the church yesterday afternoon to decorate it with garlands of fresh flowers.

A 33-piece orchestra, under the direction of Flatley’s friend, musician Ronan Hardiman, will rehearse at the church from 11am today. They will be joined by The Chieftans, who will also be guests at the exclusive bash later.

Meanwhile, staff from Limerick-based Masterchefs Hospitality were busy preparing for the banquet.

Guests will include former Taoiseach Albert Reynolds and his wife, Kathleen, who went to school with Flatley’s father.

Health Minister Mary Harney and her husband Brian Geoghehan, broadcasters Gerry Kelly and Gerry Ryan, promoters Jim and Peter Aiken, multi-millionaire JP McManus, and Castlehyde neighbour, David Magnier, are also expected.

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