Showbiz

Victoria Beckham’s Best Airport Catwalks

Victoria Beckham once Tweeted “The airport is my runway” and à mon avis, never has a truer word been virtually uttered. As promised, in the run-up to the designer’s 40th birthday, I am dedicating a series of posts to the darling doyenne of the fashion world and today’s blog is a look back at some of Victoria’s chicest airport outfits. From Inspector Gadget-type get-ups to full-on runway regalia, Victoria Beckham always looks immaculate as she is about to board a flight. Ever the canny marketer, Victoria knows that she is the best ambassador for her own label and never misses an opportunity to showcase her designs as she catwalks through LAX or Heathrow, dressed in in an eponymously-labelled creation, combined with towering heels, a steely pout and her trademark shades. What a woman.

Arriving at LAX for a London-bound flight, Victoria channelled Inspector Gadget. Perfectly, may I add!

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Arriving in LA in 2007 to begin their new American life, Victoria starts as she means to go on, in figure-hugging Roland Mouret:

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Victoria, roll up the Partition please! VB looks decidedly chauffeur-like at Heathrow, in her bold Balmain and in-your-face Birkin combo:

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That time Victoria arrived at Heathrow as an Audrey Hepburn tribute act:

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I am sorry, but how can you look like this in an airport? QUEEN!

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That time she compromised and wore Lanvin flats to board a flight:

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The one time Victoria got it wrong. Very, very wrong. At least she’s human:

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She can do casual airport chic too, though:

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But she’s at her best when she’s strutting through an airport with Harper:

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Like, she really is:

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I mean, come on!

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But, yeah, keep walking towards greatness Victoria!

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And when you find a piece that works, design it in multiple colours and show it off as you fly to Paris:

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And why not wear it in a different colour as you arrive back in Heathrow from Paris Fashion Week?

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Victoria saves the best for JFK, though:

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Burberry beauty:

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More the Big Orange, than the Big Apple! (Sorry)

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Victoria mistaking Beijing Airport for a runway, but SLAYIN’:

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Finally, fear not, because there was that one time in 2003, when Victoria’s ‘shits given’ level was in minus figures and this is what she wore to board a flight in Heathrow. (This was around the time VB was obsessed with making it as an edgy R ‘n’ B artist…)

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Showbiz

Victoria Beckham’s Best Quotes

 

My adulation for Victoria Beckham is no secret and as the fashion designer turns 40 this week, I thought it appropriate to dedicate a series of blog posts to the lady herself. First up is a collection of some her best and most inspiring (?) quotes with the pop princess-turned-style maven offering pearls of wisdom on everything from child rearing to her husband’s famous package. Victoria may have left her days as a naughty Spice Girl behind her, but even as she approaches the big FOUR O, she proves that she is still the same cheeky Essex girl she always was, despite being clad head-to-toe in eponymous designer creations. 

Her expert knowledge of sport:

“I don’t know much about football, but I know what a goal is and surely that’s the main thing about football.”

Her teenage ambition:

“I want to be as famous as Persil Automatic.” ICONIC BEYOND WORDS.

On her infamous pout:

“I actually used to smile a lot in pictures. I think I only stopped smiling when I got into fashion. Fashion stole my smile.”

On Goldenballs’, erm, golden balls:

“He does have a huge one, though. He does. You can see it in the advert. It is all his. It is like a tractor exhaust pipe.” Jaysis, Victoria.

 That time she could have been mistaken for Socrates:

“Sometimes the easiest things are always the hardest.” P-R-O-F-O-U-N-D.

On self-representation:

“I don’t want to be seen smiling or eating, perish the thought!”

She isn’t afraid to poke fun at herself:

“They always say ‘David is so handsome and she’s so funny’, which basically means you’re a pig with a sense of humour.”

 She says things like this and I think she’s actually being serious:

“I can’t concentrate in flats.”

The notions on her when she brought Harper shopping when she was still a newborn baby:

“I brought Harper into Prada and she loved it. It was as if she was saying ‘Mummy, I’m home.’”

She actually does have a grip on reality, though:

“You have to remember that when you’re a performer you become a celebrity, but you are not saving lives. It’s not that important.”

Proving that she and David are the most perfect celebrity parents:

“My children bloody will work!” Same as myself, same as David. They’re not going to be kids who just hang about. I want them to be able to fulfil their passions, but I think it’s important that the children grow up and have respect for themselves.”

When she loves something:

“This is MAJOR!”

ANYTIME you ask her what her clothing line is about:

“It’s about empowering women.” EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

She now expresses the 90’s Girl Power zeitgeist of the Spice Girls with a more grown-up grasp on feminism:

“It is thought provoking how a man in charge can be described as commanding, but a woman in the same situation may be called bossy.”

The pros and cons of being a style icon:

“I love my heels, but I have to go to a sex shop to get this spray to polish them.”

She is kind to animals and paints her dog’s nails to make her feel glam:

“It is dog-friendly nail polish, before we even go there because I know that is an issue. She’s a bulldog and she needs all the help she can get. We try to feminize her a little bit and make her feel sexy.”

She has the same concerns as the rest of us:

“I’m getting really self-conscious that I’m starting to look like a miserable bitch.”

And finally, some solid life advice:

“If you haven’t got it, fake it!”

Never change, Victoria. EVER. Happy 40th Birthday, you perfect creature.

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Showbiz

The Notions of Kim Kardashian

Source: http://images.socialnewsdaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/kim-kardashian-630.jpg

I am sitting in the college library with just over a month to go until exams and as I look out onto a sea of studious burgeoning academics, all I can think about is Kim Kardashian. I know, I KNOW! Fresh off the cover of American Vogue, there has never been a more fitting time to examine the disposition of the world’s most famous reality TV star, and if we are to believe Anna Wintour, one half of the ghastly-hashtagged #WorldsMostTalkedAboutCouple. You see, we Irish are fond of the word ‘notions’ and the concept behind it is a simple one – it is a jocular insult hurled at someone who has an idea above their station or is getting too big for their boots. And there are few people who have ideas above their stations bigger than Kim Kardashian. As a woman who started her career on her back, only to become a Vogue covergirl a decade later, Kim is a reminder that every dream is valid and achievable. In one sense, Kim’s ascension to the A-List (and she most definitely is, whether you care to admit it or not) is an inspirational tale of a girl who started from her the bottom and ‘worked’ her way up. She had an idea above her station and look where it got her! Let’s all celebrate the notions of Kim Kardashian. #Notions

She once thought she could sing and recorded the iconic single, Jam (Turn It Up):

If you ever needed a definition for #notions, here it is. I am not in the business of likening Kim Kardashian’s musical efforts to significant events in Irish history, but when W.B. Yeats wrote “A terrible beauty is born” in his poem, Easter 1916, it seems like a foreshadowing description of Kimberley’s pop foray. Deliciously monotone and repetitive, this really is a gift!

This is what she looked like when she dressed up as Diana Ross:

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HOLD ME BECAUSE I CANNOT COPE.

She stole Kourtney’s breaskmilk because it cured her psoriasis and then asked Kourtney to pump some more so she could feed her cat, Mercy.

I don’t actually know where to begin with this one, so I just won’t, because I just can’t.

She X-Rayed her ass:

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Tired of reports that her infamous derriere was surgically enhanced, Kim knew the only way to prove that her rear was au naturel was by wasting a doctor’s valuable time and having her mahoooooosive behind X-Rayed to prove it was all real. Khloe then posted this picture on her blog of Kim looking decidedly smug and I think it’s beyond hilarious.

On her heritage:

“I am Armenian, so of course I am obsessed with laser hair removal.”

She kind of thinks she is Elizabeth Taylor:

“I buy myself a gift every year, so this year I bought everything I wanted.” (Also, Harper’s Bazaar bizarrely allowed Kim to interview Elizabeth Taylor and it is the last known interview with the iconic actress. Kim asked her the most vacuous questions, naturally, but read it here.)

She thinks she can forge a friendship with Beyoncé:

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She is not subtle about her thirst for the D:

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She hashtagged #Enlightenment to show that she is #Cultured

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Kim is on holidays in Thailand with her family at the minute and in a series of Instagram pictures, Kim shows her millions of followers how she is either #blesssed, #enlightened or has #etiquette as she takes part in local traditions.

She tried to take a selfie with an elephant and this happened:

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Let’s not forget that she named her child after a direction!

Before baby North, or Nori was born, there were plenty of rumours that Kim was going to call her unborn daughter after a compass direction, but with such ridiculous claims even refuted by Kim herself, nobody really believed she would do such a thing. So when Kim gave birth and actually did name her child North, the Internet was sent into a frenzied meltdown. She is the ultimate fairy, with heaps of #notions.

Even though she has notions above her station, she admits she is still a regular, flawed human!

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On her support for Barack Obama’s politics:

“He just seemed very firm about the change, and that’s like, his motto.”

She died her hair blonde and thought it made her look like a different person:

“I dunno, they say I look like a different ethnicity. Nobody has been recognising me!”

That time she lost her $75,000 earring in the ocean but Kourtney was having none of Kim’s #notions

And finally, her most iconic #notion of all:

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BOW DOWN BITCHES, BOW DOWN.

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Fashion, Showbiz

10 Times Harper Beckham was Adorable in Yellow

Those of you who follow me on Twitter will know that I’m all about the strong female and the ostensible pop culture queen of female empowerment, Victoria Beckham is my guiding star. Girl power, etc. If you do follow me, then you will also be aware of my endless love and adulation for her adorable two-year-old daughter, Harper Seven, who I truly believe to be the cutest child in the history of existence. In and amongst my dedication to superlatives resides a little(?) obsession with the whole Beckham family and Harper is fast becoming my favourite female family member – Vicky, you’ve got some comp, bbz. So if you ever need a reminder that the world is a beautiful and enchanting place, here are 10 instances of Harper, looking impossibly-cute in a variety of yellow hues. Everyone smile and coo in equal measure.

1. Moody look into the distance with Daddy being v. tanned:

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2. Well someone’s gotta smile in this family!

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3. That time when Harper was moody:

4. That time when Harper walked:

5. Becoming the diva I was born to be:

6. Not much, just loving my life!

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6. Kisses for his princess: 

7. Harper not being able to cope with her life. Loves it, do you love it?

8. Yes, overlap with 7, but does that matter when you’re this cute?

9. Repeated image, but LOOK, she is walking!

10. Literally too glam to give a damn. Over and out. 

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Reviews

Re-Launch of Dublin’s Waldorf Barbershop

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The Waldorf Babershop on Dublin’s Westmoreland Street, which is responsible for crafting some of the city’s slickest beards and quiffs, is re-launching what it has to offer its unassumingly cool clientele, as part of RTE’s The Takeover.

The barbershop, which has been in business in the heart of the city since 1929 is offering a new beard and hair menu that merges the classic with the contemporary and last night, the staff of the Waldorf invited some of the city’s top bloggers and style commentators to join them for a fashion show to showcase its updated and revamped menus.

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Image Guests were treated to delicious whiskey cocktails and mingled amongst the chimes of old school Rockabilly tunes before some 1950’s dancers set the mood for the main event. Led by the brilliantly warm, funny and knowledgeable Catherine, models paraded down the barbershop, which served as a runway for the night, showing off a range of beards and hairstyles that played to the tastes of every type of guy. Old school Pompadour quiffs were juxtaposed amongst the more modern College Contour style, as models ranged from the mature gent to the, to quote Catherine, “baby faced” young guy. Something for everyone!

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The words ‘cool and hip’ have perhaps lost their significance as they are bandied around all too freely these days, but the Waldorf is genuinely and authentically both of these things, without even trying. For the past 85 years, it has been responsible for some of the city’s slickest hairstyles and following last night’s re-launch, I can’t see why it won’t be around for another 85!

Follow Waldorf Barber on Twitter @WaldorfBarber and check them out on Facebook right here. 

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Uncategorized

Why did the media fail L’Wren Scott?

I like travelling on trains by myself because put quite simply, I like eavesdropping. You hear and see some great stuff when you can’t move for three or so hours. Granted, I could read or do some productive work, but I find the bustling activity on the carriage too distracting, and, if truth be told, entertaining. However, during this morning’s journey, I heard a young boy, who couldn’t have been any more than seven or eight, ask a woman, who I’m presuming to be his mother, if “you have to be a woman to be a feminist?” (Her answer was a wholehearted “NO!”, by the way) and while I don’t know what prompted the wonderful question, at the time I was reading this article from New York magazine on the sexist reporting of the designer and former model, L’Wren Scott’s death and both instances collided and struck a chord.

On Monday, 17 March, news broke of L’Wren Scott’s tragic death and within minutes of the announcement of her passing, various social media platforms exploded with outpourings of grief, sympathy and unfortunately, terribly-sexist reporting on the designer’s then-suspected suicide. “Mick Jagger’s girlfriend found dead” was the general headline du jour that was being peddled, with the majority of reports primarily referring to L’Wren as the girlfriend of Rolling Stones frontman, Mick Jagger. Few took into account Scott’s immensely successful career as a fashion designer and model and those that did, did so almost fleetingly in the shadows of branding her as being not much more than someone’s girlfriend. Of course, soon came touching and poignant tributes from magazine editors, colleagues and friends, but the initial news of L’Wren Scott’s death was abominably reported, largely ignorant of the fact that L’Wren was talented and accomplished above all else. 

The media’s failing of Scott is all the more tragic given that all she ever wanted was to be viewed on her own merits and achievements, rather than as a statuesque trophy girlfriend of a world-famous singer. Allison P Davis recalls a 2008 interview with New York magazine whereby L’Wren says, “I just want to be known for what I do, not who I know” and then references a 2013 interview with The London Times, in which the designer declared, “I’m a fashion designer. I don’t want to be known as someone’s girlfriend.” L’Wren rose to fame first as a model in Paris for the likes of Thierry Mugler and Chanel, then delving into work as a stylist, before finally finding her calling as a designer, dressing stars such as Nicole Kidman and Angelina Jolie for the most prestigious of red carpet events. The media coverage of her death couldn’t have been further from what Scott strove for and it begs the question, how, in the twenty-first century can there exist such nonchalant sexism and sheer ignorance? Did any editor even question the headlines that were being carelessly ushered out and more importantly, what kind of editor vetoed them? Do they need that seven or eight-year-old boy to lead them towards enlightenment? 

On Monday, I immediately picked up on the way this story was being broadcast and I Tweeted about my fury at the reckless reporting of one person’s life and death. The replies shocked me. “How is it sexist?” one user asked me. Others suggested that L’Wren wasn’t well known enough to be afforded a headline of her own. People were genuinely trying to explain to me, in the most rational of manners, that it makes sense to refer to Scott as “Mick Jagger’s girlfriend” because that is all that people know her as. Someone even suggested that it’s totally acceptable because (unlike me, presumably), not everyone has “a passion for fashion.” I had to stop replying because the idiocy was infuriating and people were losing sight of the bigger issue – a woman had taken her own life and died having so much more to give. Obviously, there is an important discussion to be had on mental health and I am aware that there are millions of people who tragically face Scott’s fate and only time and hope will tell if her death was in vain. I really hope it wasn’t.

I don’t want to dwell on the Twitter debate, but the worrying acceptance of the deplorable headlines really shocked me. This wasn’t even a question of feminism, or sexism, it was a question of basic humanity. Are people actually for real? Above all else, L’Wren was a human, who was both gifted and tortured and she deserved the respect of being called by her name and not degradingly termed as someone’s possession. Thankfully,  Forbes‘ Clare O’Connor quickly jumped into the Twitter debate to appropriately offer, “Her name was L’Wren Scott and she was accomplished”, in reply to apathetic and thoughtless news headlines.  Her suicide has, of course, left her loved ones reeling with grief and one can only offer immense sympathy to Jagger, who has lost his “lover and best friend.”

L’Wren is undoubtedly worthy of all the wonderful character descriptions now posthumously bestowed upon her by various tributes and she was indeed the girlfriend of Mick Jagger, but the latter never defined her. Her relationship was part of the sum of her being, never the whole. If mainstream media is so casually dismissive of such basic human respect, then I hope I’m not valuing my own voice too highly (and I really do not intend to) when I say that it needs to get a grip and cop on. For God’s sake, L’Wren Scott was more than someone’s girlfriend and I hope that now she is finally at peace. 

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Showbiz

Amy Huberman: National Treasure

There is an old adage that says you should write about what you know and it is a saying to which I firmly ascribe. Sport – a topic that I cannot even begin to feign any knowledge of, is something I always steer away from. Amidst the innumerable and of course, much-deserved appraisals of Ireland’s national hero, Brian O’Driscoll, I feel it would be silly and unwise to wax lyrical about the indomitable B.O.D., especially when Barack Obama has pretty much already won in the adulatory dialogue stakes!

Nigella Lawson once refused to answer a question on health food, because the deliciously indulgent Lawson quipped that health food was most definitely not her “forte” and I’m feelin’ ya Nigella. As I can never claim to be terribly au fait with this whole sporting business, I have decided to write about something I do know (well, kind of … not really, but…) and turn my attentions towards Brian’s wife – the impossibly-bubbly-and-beautiful actress and author, Amy Huberman.

The U.K. has Cheryl Cole, the Bambi-eyed, dimpled pop princess whose tears tumble down her cheeks not as tears, but as dejected diamonds and we have Amy. A national treasure, through and through and dare I suggest that our Amy is more … ahem, vastly and multifariously skilled than the Geordie songstress, (Cheryl, you know I still love you deeply). Having first come to the nation’s attention over ten years’ ago as the loveable receptionist Daisy O’Callaghan in RTE’s The Clinic, Amy Huberman has steadily cemented herself as one of Ireland’s most talented actresses.

Despite only being a primary school ruffian at the time, I remember Amy starring in 2005’s Showbands (oh, how great that was!) alongside Kerry Katona, who, at the time, I thought was the epitome of wholesomeness following her jungle victory and Liam Cunningham. Having gone on to star in Comedy Central’s Threesome, Amy is currently gracing cinema screens as bride-to-be Ruth in Irish comedy, The Stag. Most recently, Amy played the part of the hilarious Miss Tivnan, in Chis O’Dowd’s Moone Boy where she took on the role of a wacky 80s art teacher who ends up copping off with the PE teacher, played by Bressie. Nice work if you can, eh?

Not to overburden anyone with threadbare aphorisms, but if anyone understands that we have all been gifted with ‘the same amount of hours in the day as Beyoncé’, it’s Amy. Not content with being the darling of Irish television, Amy added novelist to her bulging CV in 2009, with the release of her debut novel, Hello Heartbreak, which I immediately snapped up and gave to my mother, who has since passed its coffee-stained pages onto the girls. On the subject of ma mère, she is also a huge fan of Amy’s shoe collection for Bourbon and I can’t deny that this post was, in part, inspired upon seeing Hello Heartbreak wedged between a towering pile of my mother’s shoe boxes, a good five or six of them with Amy’s name emblazoned on top. Actress, novelist, shoe designer, oh and model – yes! I’d expect Amy would be too self-deprecating to accept the last term, but she can be seen looking impeccable and undeniably regal in ad campaigns for Newbridge Silverware. Heck, we may as well throw style icon into that list as well, as Amy’s fun and girly, yet sophisticated look has won her a plethora of admiration from the fashion press (remember that Louise Kennedy hot pink number she wore to 2011’s Royal Wedding?).

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Granted, I’m prone to a superlative, or five, but let’s face it – Amy and Brian are Ireland’s royals and in 2013, they welcomed their little princess, Sadie into the world and the recent pictures of a proud and teary Amy clutching her victorious husband, following Ireland’s 6 Nations win, could warm the shackles of even the iciest of hearts. When Chris O’Dowd Tweeted the picture, Amy replied in her characteristic, innocuously-sardonic tone by saying that they were only crying because they were suffering from the dreaded Irish fear of having left the immersion on before leaving for Paris. Hilarious stuff, Amy! As if she couldn’t be any more impressive, Amy is probably the funniest Irish person on Twitter. Superlatives, Jamie, superlatives, I know – but you know it’s true! A blossoming career, a seemingly perfect family and a down-to-earth and top-notch sense of humour – oh, in Amy we trust!

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Music, Showbiz

Diary of a Professional Fangirl feat. Mrs Carter

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Image source: Robin Harper, Beyonce’s Facebook

It is only now – a week after she has left our Emerald Isle that I can muster the strength to write about my tonsillitis-inducing, mammoth Beyoncé three-day extravaganza. If you’ve read anything I’ve written on here before or your timeline has ever suffered from a deluge of ‘yaaaas Gaga’-type appraisals of various female powerhouses, you will be aware of my propensity for obsession. Nigella, Victoria, Cheryl and even Nadine have all been on the receiving end of my Bieberesque fangirl tendencies, but as glamorous X Factor judges and treasured national sweethearts come and go and interest may fluctuate, there has always been one woman whose ferocious presence and impossible perfection has garnered a constant and irrevocable fascination within the confines of my little pop cultured heart. Bey, it’s you. It’s always been you.

Okay, firstly, I need to clear up the tragic logistics, if you can term them as such, that synonymised the extent of my fandom over the last week or so. Beyoncé played in Dublin’s O2 arena for four nights and consider it the duty of a professional fangirl, but I decided to take only one night off (Tuesday, for much-needed vocal rest) and attend three of the four nights. It is undeniably excessive and my dad most definitely didn’t understand my dedication to the cause, but I was determined to edge closer and closer to the stage each night in some misguided fantasy that Bey herself might recognise the inevitable loose spiritual connection between us and invite me to share the stage.

However, and we shall gloss over this extremely quickly, on the third night, I managed to secure a place up front for Bey’s last Dublin date and I can’t deny that I was like one of those annoying friends who ruins a movie for everyone else by spoiling the ending, but I found myself whispering the set-list with some sort of misplaced pride in the knowledge that I knew, “No dear, they’re not playing Countdown, this is just the intro before she breaks into Crazy In Love”, as if I were privy to Bey’s entourage.

Delusions aside, it was during the last song, Halo, when I started to feel strange. During the whole gig, I had noticed young girls fainting, literally unable to cope with their lives as Bey touched their hands or offered them the microphone. I imagined how embarrassing it would be to have to be lifted backstage under such circumstances. Hmmm, cue one probably-not-looking-at-you-at-all stare directly at me from Bey herself and suddenly my vision completely disappears and I find myself in worrying darkness, able to hear everything, but see absolutely nothing. Next thing I know, I too, just like those body-conned, excessively tanned gurlos am being carried backstage moments before the gig ends. I had fainted. HOW. EMBARRASSING?!

Now, in my heart of hearts, I know the reason I fainted was *most likely* because I hadn’t eaten or drank for about seven hours. When that’s juxtaposed with dexterous screaming, shouting and treacherous attempts at singing Love on Top as I was unknowingly suffering from the onslaught of tonsillitis in an extremely hot environment, it doesn’t take a genius to pinpoint the trigger of my demise. But I find it more entertaining and romantic to imagine that I collapsed because I couldn’t cope with Beyoncé Knowles. A true fangirl, if ever there was one. “Jaysis, what would you be screaming for?” asks my dad, who just doesn’t get it, a few days later. Oh, what was I screaming for? LIFE, BEY, PERFECTION, tbh. In hindsight, I wish I had some of my father’s pragmatism, or country cop-on, as I woke up on Thursday morning with a throat that felt like it was being force-fed cut-throat razors and then being punched just for the fun of it. I’ve spent the last few days in bed, primarily trying to recoup health-wise, but also lamenting the loss of that fair lady on the Dublin stage.

Sickness aside, Beyoncé’s 4-day stint in Dublin’s O2 as part of the revamped European leg of her Mrs Carter Show was an electrifying extravaganza that saw the beautiful synergy between old school, classic Beyoncé and 2014’s highly-sexualised, yet powerful Mrs Carter come to explosive fruition. She is, of course, the undeniable queen of balance and she treaded the boards carefully when it came to her reworked set-list following the surprise November release of her self-titled, immensely successful new album. Old favourites such as Crazy in Love and Single Ladies were seamlessly in flow amongst her newer material, such as Partition, Flawless, Drunk in Love et al and the audience lapped up each track with equal eruptive relish.

Quite simply, nobody can put on a show like Queen Bey. Even as a regular audience member, it’s easy to tell that the production is mastered down to a tee and her ease and knowledgeable comfort of the set is thanks in no small part to her running the entire show from its inception right through to being its shining star. She is undeniably her own creative director and the choice to merge Donna Summer’s Love to Love You Baby with Beyoncé’s own Naughty Girl is a clever crowd-pleaser that sees the star of the show seductively tease from an illuminated doorway. She is in control of everything and with The Mrs Carter Show’s heavy focusing on burlesque, the thing Beyoncé is perhaps most in control of is her own sexuality.

It’s easy to make a case and say that a woman who prances about on stage in an embellished leotard singing about ‘grindin’ on that wood’ is far from a feminist, but Bey most definitely is and it’s no pseudo expression either! With a track such as Flawless, Beyoncé’s assertion that she woke up in a state of perfection is perhaps intended as an ironic point of thought meant to signal that she only “woke up like this” because she fought hard for success and her call to “bow down bitches” which was initially derided as anti-feminist, is not her urging other women to bow down to respect her success, but a dig at the oppressors or the ‘haters’, if you’ll excuse the term which has probably lost all significance in the Bieber-dominated semantics of modern-day popular culture. She embraces her sexuality for all that it has to offer, and why shouldn’t she? Of course male lure is an inevitable by-product, but the goal is female empowerment and not male gaze (arguably, the latter isn’t Bey’s target market, anyway). Her feminism might not rise to the levels of the likes of Germaine Greer or Caitlin Moran, but when Beyoncé asks “Who Run The World?” it’s hard to deny, that she isn’t that baddest boss bitch that ever did live. (I think that’s how she’d describe herself, don’t you?)

Beyoncé has been at this game for over 15 years and she can undoubtedly knock out a two-hour, flawless performance as easy as you or I can eat hot dinners. It’s second nature to her, but even after 15 years, nothing feels tired or old. She could easily, with very few complaints have come to the O2 with a slightly remodelled I Am (her 2009 tour) greatest hits-type show and everyone would have jumped for joy as she Naomi Campbell walked her way across the stage to Get Me Bodied, but the Mrs Carter Show was invigoratingly-fresh, raunchily-sexy, nostalgic and at times, tear-jerking, and it was ostensibly Beyoncé at her best. As I finish typing, listening to the beautiful chimes of Irreplaceable, I’m reminded that all other divas that come and go will be appropriately pushed à gauche for Queen Bey, who will always have pride of place. However, next time she’s back, for the sake of my health, I’m gonna mime!

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Showbiz, Television

Throwback Tuesday: 5 Outrageous Celebrity Weddings

1. David and Victoria Beckham

The impossibly-ostentatious thrones, the sprawling castle, the Slim Barrett crown placed on top of a dodgy and spikey hair-do and the lavish Vera Wang gown – it can only be the nuptials of pseudo-royals, David and Victoria Beckham. A fashion moment Victoria would undoubtedly rather forget, the then pop princess’ 1999 wedding in Dublin’s Luttrellstown Castle to soccer ace David Beckham is now the stuff of celebrity legend. Despite their infamous rocky patch circa ‘03/’04 with David’s alleged affair with his PA, Rebecca Loos, Posh ‘n’ Becks appear to be one of celeb land’s strongest and undoubtedly most powerful couples, and with thanks in no small part to Victoria’s successful career transition into a credible and talented fashion designer, the duo are an internationally successful brand. I bet with her newfound penchant for minimalist chic, Victoria cringes at how deliciously-OTT her wedding was, but we’ll never let her forget her past!

2. Jordan and Peter

Ostensibly the original Big Fat Gypsy Wedding, there have been few celebrity matrimonies quite as tragic and ill-fated as Katie Price’s and Peter Andre’s 2005 Barbie/Cinderella-themed extravganza in Highclere Castle. Katie’s bridesmaid, Michelle Heaton commented on how ‘perfect’ the wedding would be, saying “it’s not going towards the tacky side, but the glamorous and the fairytale side” and her hilariously and unintentionally ironic statement is nearly as bizarre as Girls Aloud’s Sarah Harding being Katie’s other bridesmaid. From the Cinderella-esque horse and pink carriage right down to to Katie’s astronomical Swarovski-encrusted dress and Peter’s all-white ensemble, the wedding was a first-class lesson in tackorama. One word: NOTIONS. Unsurprisingly the marriage didn’t last and Peter and Katie are infamously bitter and public about their feelings towards each other.

3. Liza Minnelli and David Gest

The pairing of Hollywood legend Liza Minnelli and music producer (?) David Gest was a strange one, if ever there was one and their resplendent, but outrageously weird 2002 New York wedding was never going to be a quiet affair. If you thought Sarah Harding was a strange choice of bridesmaid for Katie Price, then the Minnelli-Gest party will truly astound you in all its eclectic hilarity. Liza had fellow Hollywood superstar, the late Elizabeth Taylor as her maid of honour and David had Michael Jackson as his best man, but bizarrely and hilariously included in Liza’s 16-strong bridesmaid line-up was Martine McCuthceon, of Eastenders (and later Love Actually) fame, who is now recognised as everyone’s favourite face of a certain probiotic yoghurt brand. The wedding was a Fifth Avenue affair with over 500 guests, including everyone from Anthony Hopkins to Mel C, with reportedly $700,000 spent on flowers alone. However, marriage wasn’t exactly “a cabaret, old chum” for this particular duo, as they divorced a year later.

4. Britney Spears and Jason Alexander

I know, I know – predictable, etc. but an outrageous celebrity wedding line-up would be tragically incomplete without Britney’s car-crash 2004 shotgun Vegas union with childhood friend, Jason Alexander. Legend has it that it was apparently after watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (how fitting!) that Spears and Alexander felt compelled to do something wildly romantic and tie the knot in Las Vegas’ Little White Chapel. Dressed in ripped jeans and what can only be described as some sort of makeshift belly-top and baseball cap, one of the shortest weddings in celebrity history was annulled after only 55 hours of marital bliss. Ah, poor Britney was clearly MAD-OU-OF-IH, so we can’t judge her and she did go on to have a few years of happiness with K-Fed, but all I can say is ‘IT-SHOULD-HAVE-BEEN-JUSTIN-GODDMAIT.’

5. Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries

Oh, where to start?! An exclusive magazine deal was clearly too run-of-the-mill for reality TV queen, Kim Kardashian, so guided by her ferociously ambitious momager, Kris Jenner, Kim Kardashian’s 2011 marriage to basketball player Kris Humphries was turned into a 4-hour, 2-part E! special with was a lesson in crass ostentation and mindless spendthrift capitalism. This marriage was all money, money, money and the Kardashian klan reportedly pocketed $18 million from the nuptials. You’ve got to hand it to her, Kim did look stunning in her three custom-made Vera Wang gowns but the wedding was almost an unknowingly updated version of Jordan and Peter’s car crash big day. In saying that, I’d have died and gone to heaven were I on the guest list because the Kardashians can throw a party, and then some! However, the wedding was more of a business transaction than an emotional investment, so it was hardly shocking to see Kim and Kris announce their separation after only 72 days of marriage. I can’t imagine Kim’s forthcoming marriage to the egomaniacal Kanye West will be a much more subtle affair than her doomed 2011 espousal.

…And some final Tuesday Triva

If you thought Britney’s and Kim’s ill-fated marriages were short, then these two are only trailing behind old Hollywood legends, Zza Gabor and Rudolph Valentino. While the logistics around the legalities of both marriages are hazy, Zza married Felipe de Alba on a ship and divorced him later that day, while Valentino divorced Jean Acker after only 6 hours of marriage, when she refused to let him into their honeymoon suite, only 20 minutes after tying the knot. Ouch!

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Music, Showbiz

Lest we forget: Let’s talk about Six

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When we, as Irish people, look back at our history as a nation, there are certain key events that are synonymous with, and indeed define the Irish historical landscape – The Famine, The Lockout, The Rising, The Civil War etc. However, when we examine our colourful past, there are a handful of occurrences that have all but been written out of Irish history and the dexterous rise and even speedier demise of the pop band Six is a prime example of this calamitous historical amnesia.

For what now seems like a miniscule amount of time, Emma O’Driscoll, Andy Or, Sinéad Sheppard, Kyle Anderson, Sarah Keating and Liam McKenna were ostensibly the most recognisable people in Ireland, but eleven years after break-up, their most famous (or infamous) cover of the Guys ‘n’ Dolls song, There’s a Whole Lotta Lovin’ is a long-forgotten gem. Despite, as the Wiki story goes, being the third best-selling single in Irish chart history (I thought it was THE biggest, but there ya go), There’s a Whole Lotta Lovin’ is a notably absent track on Irish radio and the deletion of the cheesy-but-incredible chimes of this particular sestet.

It all started when in 2001, Louis Walsh, Bill Hughes the ~ indomitable ~ Linda Martin began their quest to find Ireland’s newest pop band with Popstars; Ireland’s first-ever and indisputably most successful reality TV talent show. Over the course of a number of weeks, thousands of hopefuls were whittled down to a selected few and the judges travelled to each budding popstar’s home to deliver the good or inevitably devastating news. Of course, this was the same talent show that launched Nadine Coyle’s career, having infamously lied about her age to meet the show’s requirements, only to be later dropped and replaced by Sarah Keating. (Wikipedia has gloriously understated Nadine’s subsequent success with Girls Aloud, by stating that she simply “went on to join Girls Aloud”, whilst giving detailed (as much as possible) accounts of the other members’ fates.)

Viewing figures for Popstars were astronomical and it was inescapable that Six would go on to enjoy massive success, given that the majority of Ireland fell in love with them. (Wildly presumptuous and a comment entirely based on my extreme bias.) However, as the band quickly reached dizzying heights of hysteric fame, the success was short-lived, as they disbanded in 2003, falling victim to showbiz’s fickle kiss.

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Nevertheless, for a particular generation, Six were THE band, at least in Ireland, and sure, we won’t all remember them with the same level of extraordinary obsession that others will, but why has their music completely vanished from the Irish pop-music landscape? Sure, we won’t all remember Linda Martin handing Liam a pair of Marigolds to tell him that he was in the band and “on dishwashing duty in the house”, or when Emma’s parents nervously waited in the kitchen as she told us how she would become a secondary school teacher if she didn’t make the cut, but didn’t we all have a fondness for Six? Not every 7 year-old from the west of Ireland felt just as dejected as Sarah did when she initially was told that she didn’t make the band, and not everyone thought Kyle was the coolest person in the world and wanted to be like him when they grew up, but that doesn’t mean that Six didn’t earn their place in the trajectory of Irish music.

Granted, this is most definitely the nostalgic lament of a childhood obsession rather than a tragic national polemic, but wouldn’t anyone else be up for a Six reunion, à la Samantha Mumba’s one night only gig last year?  I’d be first in line with the 7-year-old inside of me still dying to know just how exactly did Kyle get his hair like that?

P.S. If you’re interested to see where they are now, here’s what they’re all at:

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