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Teen takes Toy Show surprise in his stride


TALKING WITH TUBS Mikie Moloney chats with Ryan Tubridy after his show stopping performance with megastar Dermot Kennedy on Friday night’s Late Late Toy Show. Pic: RTÉ

Áine Ryan

NATURALLY the nation has forgiven Ryan Tubridy for his Toy Show ‘F-bomb’ or ‘B-bomb’ or whatever that fizzing Fanta bottle caused him to exclaim.
It was never going to be easy embracing the weird and wonderful world of Roald Dahl during a Covid Christmas show. That is why we would have all laughed out loud if cool as a customer young Mikie Moloney from Ballina let a litany of expletives out when he realised his singing hero Dermot Kennedy had crept up behind him during his performance at last Friday’s festive shindig.
But the 14 year-old was way too cool for that and continued singing and playing his guitar, as he belted out Kennedy’s hit, Giants: “We used to be giants/ When did we stop?/ Just say the word and I’ll be yours/ You know I never forgot.”
He told The Irish Times the following day that  he initially thought it was a backing track of Kennedy’s voice when he  first heard his singing hero’s voice.  
Suddenly, though, Dermot Kennedy was there in the flesh, right beside him in the RTÉ studio.
“My mind just blanked, but I said I’d better keep going anyway. The show must go on. I didn’t want to stop” Mikie said. “It’s absolutely mad. I’ll never forget this. It’s really mind-blowing.”
There was certainly more icing on the cake for for this Gortnor Abbey secondary school pupil when afterwards Kennedy presented him with a Fender left-handed signed guitar, as both singers are left-handed.
The star also told Mikie that he had once auditioned for the Late Late Toy Show, but was turned down.
“He told me that I was already a step ahead of him when he was his age.”
Overnight success has a whole new meaning as Moloney’s Instagram followers went from 300 to 27,000 after the Late Late Show.
Speaking to The Irish Times also, his proud mother, Sandra McLoughlin said Mikie, who is a multi-instrumentalist, ‘sings from the moment he gets up in the morning until he goes to bed at night’.
Of course, there was a real poignancy to the fact that his Dad, Emmet Moloney, who ran the Treffpunkt rock bar in Ballina, died three years ago from cancer, aged just 59.
“It has just given everybody such a lift. It’s just the most exciting thing that has ever happened in our lives. He didn’t take after me. His dad was very, very chilled and calm and Mikie would take after him,” Sandra said.
Both Sandra and Mikie said they knew Emmet was sharing this moment with them, smiling and full of pride.