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Dónall Ó Héalai, the Irish actor who stars in Foscadh (Shelter), which his country has entered into the best international feature race at the Academy Awards, will be honored at the Oscar Wilde Awards, it was announced Tuesday.
Also, two musical acts — Loah & Bantum and True Tides — are set to perform during the March 24 bash, which celebrates the work of those from Ireland — and some who are not — who contribute to the worlds of film, television and music.
“One of the highlights of this event is having the chance to introduce Irish actors and singers to a wider audience in the U.S.,” Trina Vargo, founder and president of the U.S.-Ireland Alliance, organizer of the Oscar Wilde Awards, said in a statement. “We know from experience that this exposure has led to more opportunities for these performers, and we’re confident the same will happen for Dónall Ó Héalai, Loah & Bantum and True Tides.”
Last month, Oscar-winning writer-director-producer Adam McKay was the first honoree to be unveiled.
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Ó Héalai will receive the Wilde Card Award, presented to up-and-coming talent. Raised in Galway, Ireland, he landed a nomination for best lead actor at the 2020 Irish Film and Television Awards for his performance in the Irish-language film Arracht (Monster), set in 1845 on the eve of the blight that would wipe out Ireland’s potato crop.
Ó Héalai has the lead role of the recluse John Cunliffe in Foscadh, an adaptation of the 2014 Irish novel The Thing About December by Donal Ryan. The film, now playing on the international festival circuit, won the best Irish first feature prize last summer at the Galway Film Fleadh.
Ó Héalai is now working on the A&E Networks International series North Sea Connection, produced by Subotica, Mopar Studios and Screen Ireland, and will appear in the boxing film Clinch, which enters preproduction in 2022.
He’s repped by Curtis Brown Group and Brave Artists Management.
Loah & Bantum is Sallay-Matu Garnett (Loah), a singer-songwriter of Irish/Sierra Leonian descent, and Ruairi Lynch (Bantum), an electronic music producer and native of Cork, Ireland. True Tides, known for its guitar-driven synth pop, is an Irish band featuring the brothers Cian, Conor and Eoghan McSweeney.
Other Oscar Wilde honorees will be announced in the coming weeks.
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