Award winning comedian returns to the MAC

Australian comedian, Eleanor Conway returns to the MAC 5-6 April with her hotly anticipated sequel, Walk of Shame 2 (Reality Bites).

Fresh from the success of a 100 date, 10 country tour, Conway is back at the MAC with her award-winning sequel about what happens when you stop chasing the ‘perfect’ version of you and realise she’s been there all along.

Winner of the 2019 FRINGE World Weekly Comedy Award, Conway has been performing nationwide since 2014, appearing at Edinburgh Fringe, Glastonbury and the famous Comedy Store.

Her original show, ‘Walk of Shame’ sold out at the MAC last April, and part two is set to be just as popular. The perfect girl’s night out, expect more confessional life advice and laugh out loud anecdotes from this ex-party girl.

Make a night of it with a pre-theatre meze platter or cocktail from the MAC’s latest menus, launching this month in the Café Bar. The new menus offer a selection of tasty treats and tipples for guests to enjoy before and during the show. Beat the queue and pre-order interval drinks from the bar before the show begins or using the handy link in your pre-show text. 

Tickets for Walk of Shame 2 (Reality Bites) are on sale now at, or call the box office on 028 9023 5053.

10 things to do in Northern Ireland has stacks of fun things to do across NI, from family days out to gigs and cultural events. Here are ten exciting things taking place this week (11 – 17 March)

  1. St Patrick’s Spring Carnival 2019 Derry-Londonderry, 16-17 March.  Welcome spring with a cacophony of colour and spectacle. This year’s carnival parade is a celebration of children and young people exploring depictions of youth in myth and legend both in the Celtic tradition and cultures across the world.  Fantastical creatures will snake their way through the city’s streets along with a host of characters representing young people from fables and fairy tales from faraway lands. Expect to be delighted by dance moves with everything from ballet to hip hop.
  2. St Patrick’s Procession Family Fun Day, Armagh, 16 March.  With a theme of “Invention and Innovation”, celebrate Saint Patrick with a spectacular display of colour, music, dance and entertainment as the wonderful procession snakes through the city from the Palace Demesne.  Afterwards, enjoy a family fun day in the Shambles Yard with free admission for all.
  3. St Patrick’s at St George’s Market Belfast, 17 March.  Get set for a real taste of Northern Ireland and sample some of the culinary delights on offer. You will be able to enjoy lots of entertainment including live traditional music, toe-tapping Irish dancing and workshops.  So pop in, relax and join in the unmissable St Patrick’s Day celebrations.       
  4. Our Living Coast Boat Tour Portrush, 16 March- 28 September. Join Causeway Seafishing Company’s eagle-eyed crew in a unique two-hour journey along the Causeway Coast.  See wildlife in its natural environment and learn about the hidden local history of the Causeway Coast.  Depart Portrush Harbour, cruise along the North of the Skerries; see hauled out seals, then continue on to Dunluce Castle.  Return journey is via the White Rocks’ sea caves and East bays.
  5. Station Island Armagh, 13 March.  The Lyric Theatre brings its performance of Seamus Heaney’s epic poem to Armagh’s Shambles Market.  Steeped in ritual, memory, and ghostly visions, Heaney’s literary pilgrimage through St. Patrick’s Purgatory explores his complex relationship with his homeland, his faith and the past.  Composers and performers Paul Stapleton and Steve Davis provide a unique live musical accompaniment to the reading.
  6. An Evening with Arborist plus Special Guests, Bellaghy, 16 March. An evening showcasing the best of Northern Ireland’s contemporary musical talent.  Fronted by James Heaney, Arborist released their critically acclaimed debut album in 2016 and now return with the follow-up A Northern View.  Joining Arborist will be three-time NI music award nominee Malojian and Conor Mason, making this a magical evening not to be missed.
  7. SPAR Craic 10K , Belfast, 17 March.  The SPAR Craic 10K sees almost 2000 runners take to the streets

in what has been described as Belfast’s first urban run.  The race will leave City Hall at 10am, passing through the Gaeltacht Quarter before finishing at Ormeau Park.  Entrants receive a ‘goodie’ bag and all finishers receive a bespoke 2019 medal.  The SPAR Craic 10K allows you to celebrate St Patrick’s in a fun, healthy way before enjoying the parade and party in Custom House Square.

  • Family Comedy Club , Belfast, 11 March.  Paul Currie unleashes his unique style which fuses traditional stand-up with puppetry, clowning and sheer exuberance.  Something new and refreshing for families that goes straight for the funny bone that we all share.  Presented as part of the 21st Belfast Children’s Festival.         
  • The Giant Lego Brick Trail, Newtownards, 2 – 31 March.  Back at Castle Espie Wetland Centre by popular demand, the Trail features 14 individually designed characters including Natalie the Nene, the world’s rarest goose, Flavia the Andean flamingo and Benedict the Bewick’s swan.  Take part in team activities, individual challenges and the popular interactive Lego brick workshops, perfect for fans young or old. Not forgetting the chance to build your own Lego owl to take home.
  • Trixie Mattel – Skinny Legend Belfast, 12 March. Dial down and dig deep into the psyche of the life-size legend as you step back into her pink cowboy boots and see the world through Trixie’s iconic eyes. Expect some music and surrealist comedy that only Trixie Mattel could hot glue together: guitar picking, razor-sharp reads, and hair teased to the sky!

For more information on these events or to plan a short break in Northern Ireland, visit

Jacqueline shares her pick of what’s on this St. Patrick’s Day weekend!


Have a day filled with fun at Exploris Aquarium in Portaferry this St. Patrick’s Day.   Join the craic and banter  with underwater and reptilian friends.  Enjoy snake demonstrations led by a team of Aquarists, daily animal demonstrations, themed arts and crafts and a mer-mazing face painter who will be joining the fun this St. Patrick’s Day.  Normal admission charges apply – pre-book online for discount. Last admission 4.00pm


Celtic Footsteps, St Patrick’s Saints of Oriel, is a unique guided tour celebrating the connections between St. Patrick and two of Ireland’s first female Irish Saints, Bridget and Moninne of Oriel.  Ring of Gullion Ambassadors Ann Ward and Venora Hovelt will lead this special tour. Venora is a guide and storyteller. Ann also a guide and meditation coach; she has deep spiritual connections with this part of Slieve Gullion as her mother was born on the mountain just below the holy well and her grandfather helped to build the shrine dedicated to St Moninne in 1929. The tour includes a two-course lunch at Ann’s second world war hut in Meigh; this includes homemade bread with onion, lentil and rosemary soup followed by an award winning lemon curd dessert with tea and coffee.


This year’s St Patrick’s Day festival in Enniskillen will start at 1:30pm on the Broadmeadow with a host of traditional and modern entertainment acts including Full Moon Fever. There will be a range of free activities including bouncy castles, balloon modellers, face painting and wandering mascots for all your selfie needs. Freebies on the day again courtesy of Lilley’s Centra sees chocolate fountains, green candy floss and of course their famous themed gelato in abundance.  On Lough Erne will host the Wakeboarding Leprechauns and St Patrick himself will be making his spectacular arrival via Castle Island before doing a meet and greet in the area. The parade itself will start from the Lakeland Forum at 3.30pm and ‘Snaking’ it’s way around Ireland’s only island town will be a mix of traditional and carnivalesque floats, music and dancing performances. This year has a theme of Go Green In 19, come dressed the part and we’ll be handing out some environmental freebies to help you get into the festival spirit!


The Blackwater Céilí Band hails from the Clogher Valley area of County Tyrone and takes its name from the River Blackwater which flows through the heart of Ulster. The band has competed at All Ireland level over the last 4 years culminating in 2018, where they were crowned All-Ireland Senior Céilí Band Champions in Drogheda. See them perform live as part of the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations at Ranfurly House, Dungannon.


This year’s Derry Spring Carnival takes place on the 16th and 17th March. As the dark skies of winter fall away, Derry will welcome the spring with open arms in a cacophony of colour and spectacle.  If you’re young in years or young at heart come along and join local communities take to the streets in a celebration of Youth. This year’s carnival parade will be a celebration of children and young people showcasing myths and legends from both Celtic traditions and the many diverse cultures across the world. See the full programme of events at


What better way to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day weekend?  Experience the steam train which will be operating at Whitehead Excursion Station. Visitors will be able to see at close hand how the magnificent Locomotive works.  You will be able to talk to the Driver and Fireman and to see the footplate.  There is also an additional option to enjoy a visit to the Edwardian Tea Room, or explore the Whitehead Railway Museum and discover the secrets of the RPSI’s 100-year-old Midland Railway buildings, together with the more recent additions.  Train rides will be running from midday to 4.00pm, every 15 minutes or so. Adult £2.50, Child £2, payable on the day.


Make your way to St George’s Market to experience an authentic St Patrick’s Day.  Get set for a real taste of Ireland and sample some of the culinary delights on offer. You will be able to enjoy lots of entertainment including live traditional music, toe-tapping Irish dancing and workshops.  So pop in, relax and join in on the unmissable St Patrick’s Day celebrations. 

For more details on these events and to add your events free go to Follow us on twitter @whatsonNI and on facebook at for news, competitions and what’s on near you.

Giant’s Causeway dish up ‘s-mash-ing’ day out at Community Open Day

Escape to the Causeway Coast’s natural play area this spring, as the Giant’s Causeway opens its doors to the local community and visitors from near and far on Saturday 9 March for two special events.

Experience the outstanding beauty and award-winning Visitor Experience free of charge during the National Trust’s Community Open Day which will take place from 9am – 6pm.

The Open Day coincides with the Randox NI Potato Festival which has returned once again to the Causeway Hotel, boasting a variety of attractions including Naturally North Coast and Glens artisan market with food and craft producers, cookery demonstrations and talks, bouncy castles, potato inspired games and a petting farm.

On the day visitors will enjoy free admission to the Visitor Centre and embark on an interactive journey through 250 million years of captivating history, experiencing the mystery, myth and legend of the Giant’s Causeway. The Ranger team will be showcasing the National Trust’s conservation work at this incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site with wild flower planting taking place between 1pm and 3pm. Visitors will also have the option of exploring themselves with an audio guide or joining one of the inspiring guided tours, followed by a well-earned local delicacy in the café or the chance to browse the handcrafted items in the gift shop, 90% of which are from local suppliers.

Ciara McClements, Visitor Experience Manager at the Giant’s Causeway commented, “Since 2012 more than 30,000 people have come along to our Community Open Days, availing of the opportunity to enjoy the Visitor Experience free of charge to connect with friends, family, and meet new people. Visitors of all ages can take part in arts and crafts sessions, face painting and celebrations galore creating memories at our special place. We are also delighted to host the Randox NI Potato Festival on the grounds of the Causeway Hotel once again, allowing visitors to enjoy even more activities and a jam-packed family day out set against the backdrop of our famous World-Heritage Site.”

Final admission to the Community Open day is 5pm, with the Visitor Centre closing at 6pm. There will also be a free Park & Ride from Bushmills to the Giant’s Causeway. For more information visit

Jacqueline shares her pick of what’s on this weekend acros NI


All little princesses (and princes of course) are invited to The Fairy Tale Princess Ball at the Belmont Hotel, Banbridge on Sunday 10th March at 2.00pm.  This is sure to be a fun filled magical event and will include meet and greets with all the classic princesses as well as lots of sing-a-longs, dancing, stories games, photo opportunities and much more.  Booking is essential. Tickets are priced at £12 each which includes one adult to accompany their child. Extra adults are welcome at an additional £2 each. Please note adults must stay with their child throughout the event.  For more information please contact


Join composer and presenter John Anderson this Saturday as he conducts a celebratory and reflective event honouring our patron saint. Taking place in the magnificent setting of St Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cathedral, choirs from across the island and further afield unite in a unique evening of music and spoken word. This is an exciting mix of words, music and dance, traditional and classical, ancient and modern, the reflective and exuberant, sacred and secular, all combining to make this a very special evening. Come along and celebrate our national saint with this uplifting, happy occasion dedicated to the true meaning of his life and legacy. A limited number of audience places are available. Please note these seats may have restricted views and that this event may be recorded for future broadcast and marketing purposes.


Factory Girls by Frank McGuiness, Ardhowen Theatre, Friday 8th March, performed by Dunmore Amateur Dramatic Society.  Set in the recessionary early 1980’s The Factory Girls tells the story of five women facing the threat of redundancy, who stage a lock-in in a shirt factory in Co. Donegal. As their protest continues the women learn more about each other and themselves as they explore their anger, courage and compassion.  The play was the stunning debut of Frank McGuinness, one of Ireland’s greatest living playwrights, and was first produced in 1982. Funny, engaging and moving.  Contains some mild language


Creating a storm around the country, Ireland’s favourite trio, Shane, Dominic, and Derek collectively The Three Tenors Ireland, have been the only Irish trio act to perform annually for the past five years in such prestigious venues as the National Concert Hall Dublin  The fab trio promise you a night to remember as they perform an exciting Celtic flavoured programme this Saturday 9th March at the Alley Theatre, Strabane.


Doncaster, 2018. It’s moving day, join Keeley as she packs away her memories into boxes. Come in for a cuppa and give her a hand. As she packs up her plates and boxes up her treasures, she journeys back through her family history. Me, Mum & The Patriarchy is a witty one woman show that looks at the choices we make and explores whether women really can have it all. Saturday 9th March at the Playhouse Theatre Derry.


The sensational new Stage Musical “My Sweetheart and Me” is a rip-roaring, funny romantic comedy set during the Summer of Love 1967, in and around a popular cornerstone of the community Public house (The Suntree bar) in the fictional sleepy town of Cheerysville, Ireland.   ​Seen through a nostalgic lens, the story centres around two single love struck thirtysomethings, as they haphazardly struggle against all the odds, to get their new found love for one another off the ground. Theatre at the Mill,  8th – 9th March.


Fresh from two consecutive years at the Edinburgh Fringe, join award-winning drumming comedy performer Paul Richards as he struggles to control his very merry ‘choir’ of comedians in their bid to tell you the entire history of pop music in just 90 minutes.  Packed with special guests and surprises, this gloriously messy singalong show will find our loveable/shambolic ensemble attempt to perform 62 songs in an hour and a half with a whole host of inevitable distractions…what could possibly go wrong? Crescent Arts Centre, Saturday 9th March.

For more details on these events and to add your events free go to Follow us on twitter @whatsonNI and on facebook at for news, competitions and what’s on near you.  

Jacqueline McGonigle

10 things to do in Northern Ireland has stacks of fun things to do across NI, from family days out to gigs and cultural events. Here are ten exciting things taking place this week (4 – 10 March)

  1. The Home of St. Patrick Festival in Armagh, Armagh, 8 -18 March. Filled to the rafters with an outstanding programme of things to do, places to visit, see and enjoy, the Home of St. Patrick Festival is set to entertain with over 30 events lined up across the city.
  2. Macbeth, Belfast, 5 – 9 March. The National Theatre, creators of War Horse and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, bring Shakespeare’s most intense tragedy to the Grand Opera House with this epic and visually daring touring production.
  3. NI Sugar Expo, Templepatrick, 9 – 10 March.  Love to bake or have a passion for cakes?  Tailored to suit all abilities from the home baker through to the seasoned professional, the NISE show at the Hilton Templepatrick has something for everyone, with workshops, competitions, live demos and a vast array of exhibitors.
  4. The Táin Tapestries – Louis Le Brocquy, Armagh, 8 March – 4 May.  This wonderful exhibition at the Market Place Theatre affords a rare opportunity to experience le Brocquy’s powerful illustrations for poet Thomas Kinsella’s translation of the Ulster Cycle’s central myth, the Táin Bó Cúailnge (Cattle Raid of Cooley). The exhibition showcases the artist’s narrative skills in the medium of tapestry together with contextual information about the enduring poetic work.
  5. Oorlog (War), Belfast 8 – 10 March. Something about a balloon slowly deflating, a nose bleeding, little helicopters falling down from a tree, a shower crying, audience members shooting and three soldiers roller-skating and talking backwards.  Come and see this powerful and acclaimed performance at the MAC and decide for yourself.
  6. 39th Annual Enniskillen Drama Festival, Enniskillen, 8 – 16 March.  This festival offers nine different drama companies, staging full-length plays over nine nights.  The wide range of plays on offer includes comedy, tragedy, well-known works and new writing performed by both local groups and those from further afield, appealing to seasoned theatregoers and novices alike.
  7. Northern Ireland Potato Festival, Bushmills, 9 March. The Randox NI Potato Festival celebrates the legacy of local man John Clarke OBE, a world-renowned pioneer in potato breeding. The Festival line-up boasts a variety of attractions including the Naturally North Coast and Glens artisan market with food and craft producers, cookery demonstrations and talks, bouncy castles, exhibitions and displays, potato inspired games and a petting farm.
  8. Walled City Music Festival – Folk Tunes and Fantastic Fantasies, Derry~Londonderry, 8 March. Fast, furious and passionate, this concert focuses on the wild and romantic side of classical repertoire as part of the Walled City Music Festival.
  9. Beethoven No.7, Cookstown, 7 March.  ‘On Your Doorstep’ is an opportunity to catch the Ulster Orchestra in the intimate surroundings of your local arts theatre.  The Cookstown programme includes Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony, best known from the finale to 2010’s Oscar-winning King’s Speech, and guest soloist Veronika Eberle performing Mendelssohn’s exquisite violin concerto.
  10. Free Open Day at Mussenden Temple, Coleraine, 9 March. Enjoy free admission to Downhill Demesne to kick off the season. Come and meet our staff and volunteers and learn more about this stunning coastal estate.

For more information on these events or to plan a short break in Northern Ireland, visit


Northern Ireland boasts an irresistible collection of places to stay including beautiful B&Bs, luxurious spa hotels and great value self-catering properties. Discover NI has selected the best offers of the week to help you plan a short break.

  • One Night B&B, The Shipquay Hotel, Derry-Londonderry from £90 per room

Located in the heart of the city’s shopping, arts and social scene, Derry’s newest and coolest boutique hotel offers a luxurious and intimate setting full of charm and personality. Offer includes overnight accommodation and breakfast the following morning. Price based on two people sharing. To book call 028 7126 7266. Offer available until 31 March 2019.  

  • One Night B&B, The Silverbirch Hotel, Co. Tyrone from £79 per room

With an enviable reputation for quality and a professional, friendly service, this award winning family owned hotel is located in Omagh, in the footsteps of the Sperrin Mountains and Gortin Lakes and provides an ideal base from which to explore the area. Offer includes one overnight stay with breakfast the following morning. Price based on two people sharing. To book call 028 8224 2520. Offer available until 31 March 2019.

  • One Night B&B, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Belfast from £99 per room

Situated in the picturesque surroundings of Lagan Valley Regional Park and just ten minutes drive from Belfast’s bustling city centre, the Crowne Plaza provides stylish dining and a wide range of leisure facilities in a refined and modern setting.  This offer includes overnight accommodation and breakfast the following morning based on two people sharing. To book call 028 9092 3500. Offer available until 31 March 2019.