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Soaps, Sport, Drama and Entertainment among the most streamed in 2023

2023 was the biggest year ever for RTÉ Player, with the free live and on-demand streaming service on track to deliver a record 100 million streams*, 35 million streaming hours and reaching 1.8 million unique users per month by the end of the year.

The RTÉ Player Top 10 reveals that Irish audiences love to stream a wide range of content from their daily consumption  of soaps including EastEnders, Home & Away and Fair City, to critically acclaimed drama including KIN, Happy Valley and Love/Hate, and  never miss a moment of live action sport from the Rugby World Cup to The All-Ireland Senior GAA Championship and the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Viewers accessed RTÉ Player to binge home-grown documentaries including Gaelic in the Joy, Dr Cassidy’s Casebook and The Case I Can’t Forget were a hit with streamers, along with hit comedy series The Young Offenders, SisterS and Colin from Accounts. Viewers turned to RTÉ Player for entertainment throughout the year to watch The Late Late Show, The Tommy Tiernan Show and First Dates Ireland. Oscar-nominated short film, An Irish Goodbye was the most streamed film of the year on RTÉ Player. July 26th was the biggest day of the year on RTÉ Player with over 250,000 hours of content streamed on the day that Katie McCabe led the Republic of Ireland in a crucial clash against Canada during the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

RTÉ Player offers a large selection of content for kids. Peppa Pig and Bluey were hits in 2023, along with Irish language programme Peppa Muc and award-winning Dizzy Deliveries – the first programme to teach children Irish lámh signs.

RTÉ Player Originals continued to launch new faces and formats online with home renovation series Relove My Space presented by Fionnuala Jones and Paul Kinsella taking the top spot in this category, and Anna Clifford’s new series Ireland’s Perfect Pubs which launched in October.

Soaps on RTÉ Player including Fair City, EastEnders, Home and Away and Neighbours had more than 20 million streams in 2023. The most-watched episode of Fair City was from April 16th, when Halley discovered that Rafferty’s meetings at McCoy’s were not what they seemed. The most watched episode of EastEnders was from January 5th, with the fallout from the Slater’s New Year’s Eve party coming to a dramatic conclusion.

Speaking about the success of RTÉ Player over the past 12 months, Head of RTÉ Player Aoife Byrne said: “2023 was the biggest year ever for RTÉ Player – on target to reach 100 million streams by year end is double where we were a few years ago. Alongside the big live events like the Women’s World Cup, The Sunday Game Live, The Rugby World Cup and The Late Late Toy Show, audiences binged an array of big drama boxsets including KIN, Happy Valley, Smother and One Tree Hill and TV series such as The Room to Improve, Home of the Year and the ever-popular Soaps.

Over the last year we’ve added more choice than ever before in every genre on RTÉ Player, and continued our investment to ensure audiences have a great streaming experience, live and on-demand. We have also extended availability of our RTÉ Player app across more TV platforms than ever before. There’s plenty more in store for 2024.”

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Top 10 programmes on RTÉ Player in 2023

1 EastEnders
2 Home and Away
3 Fair City
5 The Saturday/Sunday Game
6 Rugby World Cup 2023
7 Happy Valley
8 Love/Hate
9 The Late Late Show
10 FIFA Women’s World Cup

Top 10 drama series on RTÉ Player in 2023

2 Happy Valley
3 Love/Hate
4 Unforgotten
5 Normal People
6 One Tree Hill
7 Frasier
8 Clean Sweep
9 Gossip Girl
10 Smother

Top 10 individual sport events on RTÉ Player in 2023

1 FIFA Women’s World Cup Live: Republic of Ireland v Australia (20th July 2023)
2 Rugby World Cup 2023: South Africa v Ireland (23rd September 2023)
3 FIFA Women’s World Cup Live: Canada v Ireland (26th July 2023)
4 The Sunday Game Live: Kilkenny v Limerick, All-Ireland Hurling Final (23rd July 2023)
5 The Sunday Game Live: Dublin v Kerry, All-Ireland Football Final 2023 (30th July 2023)
6 Guinness Six Nations: Ireland v France (11 February 2023)
7 European Qualifiers: Republic of Ireland v France, UEFA Euro 2024 (27th March 2023)
8 Guinness Six Nations: Scotland v Ireland (12th March 2023)
9 Rugby World Cup 2023: Ireland v Tonga (16th September 2023)
10 Rugby World Cup 2023: France v New Zealand (8th September 2023)

Top 10 documentaries on RTÉ Player in 2023

1 Gaelic in the Joy
2 Once Upon a Time in Northern Ireland
3 Dr Cassidy’s Casebook
4 The Case I Can’t Forget
5 Davy’s Toughest Team
6 Ireland’s Wild Islands
7 The Murdochs: Empire of Influence
8 Quinn Country
9 Missing: Beyond the Vanishing Triangle
10 Brian and Arthur: A Very Modern Family

Top 10 comedy programmes on RTÉ Player in 2023

1 The Young Offenders
2 Father Ted
3 SisterS
4 The Big Bang Theory
5 Colin from Accounts
6 Hardy Bucks
7 Killinaskully
8 Women on the Verge
9 The 2 Johnnies Do America
10 PEN15

Top 10 kids programmes on RTÉ Player in 2023

1 Peppa Pig
2 Bluey
3 News2Day
4 Bing Bunny
5 Fireman Sam
6 Peppa Muc
7 Dizzy Deliveries
8 Shaun the Sheep
9 Hey Duggee
10 Fia’s Fairies

*Based on average weekly usage and 2022 performance RTÉ Player streams expected to hit 100 million by 31 December 2023.

Data source: Piano Analytics. Top 10 based on total streams, genre top 10’s are based on total streams within that genre.

The RTÉ Sportsperson + Sport Team of the Year Nominees 2023 Revealed

Joanne Cantwell and Darragh Maloney will present the RTÉ Sport Awards 2023 live from Studio 4 in RTÉ on Saturday 16 December. The Awards being handed out on the night live on RTÉ One in front of an audience of Irish sports stars include RTÉ Sport Sportsperson of the Year, RTÉ Sport Team of the Year, RTÉ Sport Manager of the Year and RTÉ Sport Young Sportsperson of the Year. This year’s nominees for the RTÉ Sport Team of the Year are listed below.


Rhys McClenaghan 

The Antrim gymnast retained his Pommel Horse World title.

Katie McCabe 

The Republic of Ireland captain was nominated for the Ballon D’Or and was named Arsenal’s Player Of The Year.

Jonathan Sexton     

Captained Ireland to the Grand Slam and became the all-time leading points scorer in the 6 Nations.

Katie Taylor 

The Bray boxer became an undisputed two weight World Champion.

Aaron Gillane   

The Patrickswell man was named Hurler of the Year as Limerick won the All-Ireland for a 5th time in 6 years.

Paul Townend 

The Cork jockey won the Gold Cup, Queen Mother Champion Chase, the Arkle, and the Irish Grand National.

Róisín Ní Riain    

The Limerick swimmer won World gold and silver medals at the World Para Swimming Championships.


Limerick Hurling        
League champions, five-in-a-row Munster champions and joint-record four-in-a-row All-Ireland champions.

Dublin Men Football     
The Dublin men’s football team beat Kerry in the decider to reclaim Sam Maguire after a three-year wait.

Dublin Women Football   
Likewise for the Dublin women’s team as they also overcame the Kingdom in the final.

Cork Camogie            
The Rebels won a 29th All-Ireland title in August, beating Waterford in the final for their first title since 2018.

Shamrock Rovers   
Stephen Bradley’s side were crowned League of Ireland champions for the fourth season in succession, equalling the record of the 1984-87 Hoops team.

Munster Rugby 
A first piece of silverware in 12 years for Munster as they won the United Rugby Championship.

Irish Rugby  
A fourth grand slam for the Irish rugby team and first completed in Dublin.

Katie-George Dunlevy and Linda Kelly 
Double gold for Katie-George Dunlevy and Linda Kelly at the Para Cycling World Championships.

Fintan McCarthy and Paul O’Donovan  
World gold again for Irish rowers Paul O’Donovan and Fintan McCarthy, a fourth in a row for O’Donovan and third for McCarthy.

WATCH | Unfolding Chaos: How Dublin’s Riots Developed

A timeline of Dublin’s City Centre on November 23rdRead Here

WATCH the video here.

Two weeks to the day since the riots that took over Dublin’s city centre on November 23rd, RTÉ’s Prime Time has released a special online edition, documenting in video a detailed timeline of that day, and shedding more light on how these riots developed across the afternoon. With hours of CCTV and video footage, shared by those who were on the scene, analysed; this timeline shows how key events happened from 13:46, moments after the attack on Dublin’s Parnell Square, and ends at 21:38 bringing the viewer inside some of the premises under attack. Back outside viewers can witness the rioters take over O’Connell Bridge. The video compiled and timecoded by RTÉ Prime Time also shows that looting and criminal damage happened in areas where Garda public order units had passed through.  Using bespoke online search systems to analyse social media activity, RTÉ Prime Time also compiled a picture of how sentiment developed online in relation to the attack. The worst riots that Dublin has seen in decades, Dublin City Council estimates that between 17:45 and 22:45, almost €20m worth of damage was done in the area.  WATCH: ‘Unfolding Chaos: How Dublin’s Riots Developed’ on or the RTE News YouTube channel.

‘Imogen from the Heart’ Unveils the Life and Soul of Artist Imogen Stuart

Imogen from the Heart, a brand-new fascinating arts documentary, follows the life of one of Ireland’s most celebrated artists, Imogen Stuart. The documentary, which will be broadcast on Thursday, December 7th at 10.15 pm on RTÉ One, was inspired and captured by her grandson Emile Dinneen. He has spent the last 13 years filming Imogen, who is now in her mid-90s and still busy creating.

The documentary delves into various aspects of a remarkable life from growing up in the Second World War in the heart of Nazi Berlin, to marrying into the bohemian world of Maud Gonne’s family, escaping a difficult marriage in the 1960s, and working as a sculptor in Ireland.

Over a career spanning 70 years, Imogen created an extraordinary body of work that appears in public spaces and private collections throughout the world. Today, Imogen is looked upon as one of Ireland’s most prolific sculptors. Her sculptures can be found in all corners of Ireland from The Fiddler of Dooney and Children in Stillorgan, Co. Dublin, to Saint Brendan the Navigator in Bantry, Co. Cork, and Pangur Bán at Áras an Uachtaráin in Dublin’s Phoenix Park.

During the film, Imogen visits Glendalough where her daughter Siobhán, who died in a car accident in the 1980s, is buried. Viewers get an intimate window into how she has coped with loss and tragedy while sharing her views on family, art, religion, and the meaning of life.

Tune into Imogen from the Heart on Thursday, December 7th at 10.15 pm on RTÉ One and RTÉ Player.

Sculptor Imogen Stuart(R) photographed by Conor Horgan with her grandson, film director Emile Dineen, in front of her sculture ‘Stele” 14.11.23

Man vs Ocean – new RTÉ documentary follows Damian Browne and Fergus Farrell’s epic Atlantic Ocean rowing adventure 

“The minute you get comfortable, the Atlantic just knocks you over…” 

PREVIEW: Man vs Ocean, 112 Days 

Man vs Ocean, an emotional and reflective adventure documentary that follows Damian Browne and Fergus Farrell’s thrilling voyage as they attempt the impossible – traversing the unforgiving Atlantic Ocean in a small two-person rowboat – will air on Wednesday 6th December, 9.35pm on RTÉ One and RTÉ Player. The documentary follows Damian and Fergus preparing for their epic voyage as they aim to set a new world record for the fastest unsupported Atlantic row, from New York to Galway. Their extraordinary journey will not only test their bodies but also push the boundaries of their relationships with each other, their families, and themselves.

Setting out on this adventure, Damian Browne commented: “More people have summited Mount Everest or been into space than rowed an ocean. Our goal is to row from New York 5,000km across the unforgiving North Atlantic, unsupported to our hometown Galway by manpower alone. The record is 55 days 13 hours. Our goal is to break that world record…” 

The physical obstacles are only one element of their journey. Damian and Fergus are forced to face their own personal obstacles as they push their bodies and minds to the limits. Damian aims to use the journey to reflect on his obsession with thrill seeking. Meanwhile, Fergus wrestles with self-doubt and questions whether he is ready for this mammoth challenge as, just a few short years ago he was paralysed by a traumatic spinal injury, but learnt to walk again against the odds.

However, when Fergus has to be evacuated 12 days into the excursion, Damian quickly realises that his journey is only just beginning. What started out as two friends attempting to break a 125-year-old world record hurtles into the ultimate test of human endurance. While out on the ocean, Damian is forced to reevaluate his relationship with his friends, his family and ultimately, his relationship with himself.

Man vs Ocean will air on Wednesday 6th December, 9.35pm on RTÉ One and RTÉ Player. 


The Black and Irish Gala Awards – Powered by RTÉ – took place in the Osprey Hotel in Naas on the 2nd of December last. Ireland’s Black and Irish community came together to celebrate nominees and winners alike.

The winners on the night were:

●      Personality of the Year – Victor Alfred

●      Community Star of the Year (Sponsored by Intel) – Blezzing Dada

●      Community Organisation of the Year (Sponsored by Deloitte) – Open Circle

●      Actor of the Year – Tishe Emmanuella Fatunbi

●      Educator of the Year (Sponsored by ISA) – Nursing with Winnie

●      Outstanding Contribution to Music (Sponsored by Guinness) – Tunde Esho

●      Podcast of the Year – Charge It To The Game

●      Activist of the Year – Abdulai Mansaray

●      Content Creator of the Year – Victor Alfred

●      Entrepreneur of the Year (Sponsored by Goodbody) – Jasmine Feehan (pictured below)

●      Female Sportsperson of the Year – Rhasidat Adeleke

●      Male Sportsperson of the Year – Israel Olatunde

●      Business of the Year – We Are Human Collective

●      Female Artist of the Year (Sponsored by Guinness) – Aby Coulibaly

●      Male Artist of the Year (Sponsored by Guinness) – Fortune Igiebor

Hosts Katja Mia and Vanessa Ogbonna were joined on the night by Black and Irish Co-founders Leon Diop (main image) and Femi Bankole, who spoke about the new partnership with RTÉ and the growing importance of the awards.

The Jude Hughes Awards, which was introduced last year, was given to community legend Mama Shee. It was awarded by Jude, who has been a pillar of strength for the Black and Irish community for many years. Performers on the night included Neubri, Salamay and DJ Tee.

Black and Irish CEO, Leon Diop said “The BIG awards is an opportunity for us to spotlight the community and its achievements. We have had a fantastic night of celebration, recognition and networking. We can’t wait to see what 2024 has in store for the community.”

Pictured at the awards, RTÉ 2FM’s Beta da Silva.

Record Year as RTÉ Supporting the Arts supports 170 events throughout 2023 

*** 30% rise in number of arts and cultural events supported by RTÉ *** 

During 2023, RTÉ supported 170 arts and cultural events all over Ireland through the RTÉ Supporting the Arts scheme. Spanning film, music, dance, opera, festivals, literature, theatre and exhibitions, RTÉ has delivered a 30% increase year-on-year in the annual number of campaigns supporting Ireland’s rich and vibrant cultural landscape.  

Across the year, RTÉ increased its commitment to supporting both new and established events in our communities, including Dublin Dance Festival, Baboró International Arts Festival for Children, Cúirt International Festival of Literature, Galway Film Fleadh, IFI Documentary Festival 2023, Culture Night 2023, Dublin Theatre Festival, and much many more.  

The number of arts and cultural festivals and events supported by RTÉ has grown steadily from a base of 100 per year in 2013, up to 150 in 2022, and now 170 in 2023. The scheme offers dedicated promotion on RTÉ’s television, radio and digital services, and extensive support across RTÉ’s social channels. With production services often provided by RTÉ, in addition to promotional airtime, the RTÉ Supporting the Arts scheme is a lifeline to Ireland’s creative and cultural sectors. 

This December is no exception with an array of events taking place as outlined below, including Library Ireland Week, which runs until 9th December.  

In 2023, RTÉ supported 170 events, as follows: 

Library Ireland Week 2023 
Baboró International Arts Festival for Children 
Cúirt International Festival of Literature 
Dublin International Chamber Music Festival (Great Music in Irish Houses) 
Westport Festival of Chamber Music 
PhotoIreland Festival 2023: R/evolutions 
Galway Film Fleadh 
IFI French Film Festival 2023 
Bealtaine Festival 
IFI Documentary Festival 2023 
Culture Night 2023 
Borris House Festival of Writing and Ideas 
Poetry Day Ireland 
Esker Festival Orchestra 10th Anniversary Celebration 
Dublin Theatre Festival 
Write By The Sea Kilmore Quay Literary Festival 
Dublin Book Festival 
Red Line Book Festival 
Open House Dublin 2023 
Kerry International Film Festival 2023 (KIFF 2023) 
Dublin Dance Festival 
West Cork Literary Festival 
The Holy Hour 
RHA 200 
Murmur of Bees 
Fun Home 
In the Midst of Plenty’ Nationwide Tour of Ireland 
Rita Duffy : Persistent Illusions 
Wexford Festival Opera 
International Literature Festival Dublin 
Wigmore Hall Festival, Dublin 
The Giggler Treatment at The Ark, Dublin 
Peter Pan 
Self-Determination: A Global Perspective 
Limerick Classical Concert Series 
All Eyes On Us 
Bram Stoker Festival 
IMRAM Féile Litríochta Gaeilge 
Cork Folk Festival 
Dublin Festival of History 
The Loved Ones 
Westival – Westport Arts and Music Festival 
Concert – Anna Dennis, Jonas Nordberg & Liam Byrne 
Sligo Jazz Project international jazz festival and summer school 
Hinterland Festival Kells 
Belfast TradFest 
Lavery. On Location. 
2023 Allingham Festival 
Kilkenny Arts Festival – do some social posts 
The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams 
GAA: People, Objects & Stories 
Andy Warhol Three Times Out 
Nights Candles are Burnt Out: Climate, Culture, Change & Community 
Ireland Is 
Galway International Arts Festival 
Rachmaninov’s All Night Vigil  
Poets, Passion, and Peace 
How to fold the wind 
Cork International Film Festival (CIFF) 
Dublin Fringe Festival 2023 
Dublin HandelFest 
Boyne Music Festival 
New Ross Piano Festival 
Tour by the Carducci Quartet 
Seán Corcoran Series 
East Cork Early Music Festival 
West Wicklow Chamber Music Festival ‘Winter Weekend’ 2023 
WhistleBlast’s Winter Wonderland 2023 Tour 
You Belong To Me by Rory Nolan 
Clonmel Junction Arts Festival 
Limerick Jazz Festival 2023 
Dingle Literary Festival 
ISLA Festival 
40th EVA International 
Bray International Jazz Festival 
Bold Moves 
Lavinia Fontana: Trailblazer, Rule Breaker 
Earagail Arts Festival 
Limerick Sings International Choral Festival 
National Heritage Week 
Music Current Festival 
Concert – Linda May Han Oh & Fabian Almazan 
SCS Killaloe Music Festival 
Lá Mór na Gaeilge 
Blackwater Valley Opera Festival 
The New Electric Ballroom 
Brigit 2023: Dublin City Celebrating Women 
The Price 
One Dublin One Book 
New Music Dublin 
Irish Chamber Orchestra 
Finding a Voice 
First Cut Youth Film Festival 2023 
Fresh International Film Festival 
Ortús Chamber Music Festival 
West Wicklow Chamber Music Festival 
The Maria Edgeworth Festival of Literature & Art 
Limerick Early Music Festival 
Cork International Choral Festival 
Franco-Irish Literary Festival 2023 
7th East Asia Film Festival Ireland 
Cork Midsummer Festival 
Catalyst International Film Festival 
Achill International Film Festival  
Mother Tongues Festival 
Scene and Heard 
Handel’s ‘Messiah’ [Duplication 659] 
Dublin Literary Award – Winner Announcement 
Bloomsday Film Festival 
Irish Memory Orchestra 10th Anniversary Celebration 
Cassiopeia Winds Tour 
Indian film festival of Ireland 
Clones Film Festival 
Chamber Music on Valentia 
Boyne Tradfest 
Scoil Gheimhridh Ghaoth Dobhair 
Disappear Here International Film Festival 
Galway Cartoon Festival 2023 
Left Behind 
Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival 
Two Stories 
The Leaves Festival of Writing & Music 
Seeing the Star 
Handel’s Messiah 
Light Moves Festival 
Soul Noir: Festival of the Dark Arts 
National Circus Festival of Ireland 
Fidelio Trio Winter Chamber Music Festival 
11th Annual Concertina Cruinniú 
International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival 
From Out The Land 
Drawing from the Well, a concert presented by ITMA in partnership with NCH 
Metamorphosis Art Exhibition- Headway 
Inishbofin Arts Festival 2023 
Dublin Smartphone Film Festival 
Dublin Literary Award 
THE ROSE TATTOO by Tennesee Williams 
Emotional Motivations – from Bach to Buxtehude 
Galway Ukulele Festival 
SongTales sa Spéir 
Waterford International Film Festival 
Evlana Ensemble – Perfect Offering 
The Garden Party 
Oireachtas na Samhna 
FLIGHT – an opera by Jonathan Dove 
Self-Determination: A Global Perspective 
Waterford Walls International Street Art Festival 
Minding Creative Minds at the IFTAs 
Dublin International Film Festival 
Incognito 2023 – The Online Art Sale in Aid of the Jack and Jill Children’s Foundation 
Fastnet Film Festival 
Ballydehob Jazz Festival 2023 
Theatre Lovett present the 2023 national tour of The Teddy Bears’ Picnic by Louis Lovett 
Portrait Lab  -The Model 
My Father’s Dragon: The Exhibition 
Crash 25! 
The Gate -PIAF 
Music for Galway – Midwinter Festival 
TradFest Temple Bar 2023 
Turner: The Sun is God 
IMBOLC International Music Festival 
27th Festival of Youth Orchestras 
Ennis Book Club Festival 
Anne Collier Exhibition 2023 
Made of Earth – Hunt Museum 
FOLKS’ MUSIC Festival 


Watch our promo: RTÉ Supporting the Arts | What’s on – YouTube  

To find out more information about RTÉ Supporting the Arts and to apply visit  

About RTÉ Supporting the Arts – About RTÉ ( 


RTÉ Confirms Range of Measures as Part of Cost Controls for 2024

Following the launch of its new direction framework (see, the Government recently announced the provision of €40m in interim funding for RTÉ in 2024, subject to the implementation of further reforms.

As outlined to the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and New EraRTÉ’s overall running costs will rise in 2024 due to a number of special events and other inflationary pressures. Therefore, with a continued decline in sales of TV Licences and with commercial revenue projected to be broadly level year-on-year, RTÉ must implement a range of cuts to planned expenditure. Initially, RTÉ will implement a minimum of €10m in cuts to expenditure planned for 2024 in order to address immediate and significant financial challenges.

These cuts will include:

  • Cuts to and deferrals of content
  • An initial and limited Voluntary Exit Programme, to deliver a headcount reduction of 40. This will be funded by the 2017 land sale proceeds
  • Ongoing freeze on recruitment
  • Maintaining tight controls on discretionary spend
  • Postponement of a range of capital and strategic projects, including the postponement of a planned brand refresh, and the postponement of planned podcasting and short-form content units

RTÉ has today confirmed the following reductions to planned content for 2024. The purpose of these deferrals is to help achieve a reduction in planned expenditure of a minimum of €10m, while simultaneously making available the production resources required to deliver the Olympic Games, the European Football Championships, local and European elections, and other special events.

These cuts and deferrals span a range of genres and will encompass both the production of in-house programmes and the timing of broadcast of some commissioned and co-produced content.

  • Fair City will reduce on air from four to three episodes a week from January 4 to allow for a pause in production in July and August. RTÉ will continue to produce four episodes per week but will air three.
  • RTÉ’s in-house Sunday evening summer factual programming will not be produced in 2024 
  • RTÉ will not produce an in-house Saturday evening entertainment show in the Spring of 2024
  • Production of a third season of The Money List will be deferred until 2025 (a second season, produced in 2023 will air in 2024)  
  • The transmission of Young Offenders will be deferred until 2025  
  • The budget for acquired programmes will be reduced in 2024
  • Additional savings will be delivered through production savings in News and Current Affairs and Sport

These cuts in production and postponements will contribute to overall savings of a minimum of €10m, and are part of an overall cost-management plan including an ongoing freeze on recruitment and the postponement of a range of capital and strategic projects.

Kevin Bakhurst, Director-General, says: “2024 will be a challenging year and one in which we will have to manage our cost base carefully. These deferrals of production and transmission, along with reduced production budgets, are hard choices. However, they will not only assist us in achieving the required savings, but allow for pro-active cost and resource management in the delivery of essential special events in 2024. With these temporary reductions and deferrals, we are seeking to maintain and preserve RTÉ’s schedules and public service delivery as much as possible. 

With the launch of the new direction outline plan, my hope, as I have said before, is that we will enter 2025 armed with a robust strategy that makes the best use of the monies available to fund our national media service, monies we will invest as wisely and strategically as possible to improve the invaluable contribution of public service media to life in Ireland.  

Those monies, of course, depend upon a decision on the future sustainable funding of public service media in Ireland.” 


Irish Drama Goes Global

RTÉ Drama continues to grow its international reach as Series Two of Hidden Assets prepares to air on BBC Four this weekend, while Kin Series One continues its run on BBC One.

David Crean, Acting Head of Drama for RTÉ said  “What a treat for UK audiences to be able to watch these two great Irish dramas. It’s confirmation that Irish dramas have huge appeal, both in Ireland and internationally.”

At home, The Gone has just finished its six-week run on RTÉ One on Sunday nights. The story of young Irish people missing in the New Zealand has also been nominated for nine New Zealand Television Awards, including Best Actress, Best Actor and the coveted Best Drama award.

The Gone joins recent series KIN, Smother, Hidden Assets, Clean Sweep, Obituary and The Dry in offering quality drama to Irish viewers. RTÉ Drama has endeavoured to provide our audiences with more high quality drama than ever before. From 20 hours of drama in 2020, the drama department has delivered 43.5 hours in 2023.  The plan is to increase those numbers even further, getting more Irish stories on our screens and out to international audiences.

Many of these series are produced with international partners who help get these stories made, and then help to send original Irish drama across the world.  New thriller The Boy That Never Was has just finished shooting, and international distributor Abacus have announced that it will appear on France TV and UK TV. Other Irish dramas are available in the UK on itvX, on Acorn in North America, as well as Hulu and numerous other channels and streamers across the globe.

RTÉ actively develops projects that will meet the objectives of the various funding bodies on the Island of Ireland: BAI Sound and Vision Fund, Screen Ireland, the WRAP fund, Northern Ireland Screen as well as projects that are suited to international co-funding, pre-sales and co-production.

RTÉ has also established relationships with British, European, Canadian, American, Australian and New Zealand broadcasters, as well as all the major international distribution companies. RTÉ has a presence at all important international markets including MIPCOM, Series Mania and Content London. The global television drama sector now recognises Ireland and RTÉ as a significant source of quality international drama.

Looking to the future of the industry here in Ireland, we’re also providing a ramp for new talent to come through with the growing reach and stature of RTÉ and Screen Ireland’s joint venture, Storyland. This series focuses on emerging writing and producing talent in the drama space. Many of the Storyland creators have gone on to work on established primetime dramas including Smother and Hidden Assets, while others are actively developing their own series with the RTÉ Drama team.

The goal is to continue to develop and strengthen RTÉ’s growing reputation for creating high-quality drama that works for the Irish audience and the world.

The Late Late Toy Show 2023 Slays its Mission of Spreading Christmas Cheer

Number One Programme of the Year to Date  -Over 1.7 million people watched across the weekend -Over €3.6 million Raised for Toy Show Appeal  -Record-breaking 550,000 RTÉ Player Streams from 147 countries  -26.2 million video views across Social Media for #LateLateToyShow 

To Whom It Concerns…

RTÉ’s Elf-themed Late Late Toy Show slayed its mission of spreading Christmas cheer for all to hear, raising an incredible €3.6 million for the  RTÉ Toy Show Appeal, sleighing straight in as the most-watched programme of the year and breaking records on RTÉ Player with those watching in Ireland and around the world. Our toy demo kids also helped spread the cheer beyond RTÉ platforms, with #LateLateToyShow generating an enormous 26.2 million video views and 2.2 million interactions on social media.

Average TV viewing for Friday night’s show is now over 1.7 million, including catch-up viewing on Saturday and Sunday. As host Patrick Kielty channelled Buddy the Elf in his debut Toy Show, audiences from an unprecedented 147 countries worldwide streamed the annual extravaganza which this year featured over 170 performers from around the country including unforgettable toy demo kids such as County Clare’s Sheamie, sport loving Stevie from Kilkenny, and Tipperary’s Sophie who raced to the studio in time for Patrick to surprise her with a magical trip to Disneyland.  Host Patrick Kielty said: “I’m still coming back down to earth from an amazing night last Friday. I want to express huge thanks to everyone who helped make this year’s Late Late Toy Show so special. To all of you who watched, to the brilliant kids who brought their magic and put a giant smile on all of our faces. And, to every last one of you who gave so generously to our Toy Show Appeal – you have made a massive difference to so many children’s lives – thank you! Being part of it is something I will never forget – a forever night!”  The Irish diaspora worldwide stayed connected with home through RTÉ Player from a record-breaking 147 countries including first-time streams from Cameroon, British Virgin Islands, Rwanda, Sierra Leon, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Almost a quarter of live streams on Friday night were from outside Ireland making the show the most-watched programme on RTÉ Player for 2023 with figures continuing to grow. There was a 97% increase on UK RTÉ Player streams up from 33k in 2022 to 65k in 2023, with streams in more than doubling in Northern Ireland.

The Late Late Toy Show 2023 highlights on The Late Late Show YouTube channel garnered over half a million views and counting, with Toy Show icon Sheamie and the Irish Rugby Surprise featuring in the top trending YouTube videos across Ireland over the weekend.

The Christmas cheer was felt far and wide with the #LateLateToyShow generating an enormous 26.2 million video views and 2.2 million interactions on RTÉ’s social accounts with the hashtag trending on Friday night and over the weekend on TikTok and Twitter.   There was enormous love across social for the younger stars of the night with Stevie’s performance of Ireland’s Call generating 4.8 million views across TikTok, Instagram, Facebook and X, while Sheamie’s words of wisdom to Patrick, and Sophia’s backstage performance of her rap won fans on all platforms.

Once again, audiences responded with huge generosity towards the RTÉ Toy Show Appeal, which saw over €3.6 million donated by viewers to help children’s charities across Ireland in the year ahead. This brings the total amount of funds raised by the Appeal to over €21 million since the inaugural RTÉ Toy Show Appeal in 2020.

On the over €3.6 million raised from the  RTÉ Toy Show Appeal since Friday nightDenise Charlton, Chief Executive, Community Foundation Ireland said: “The extraordinary generosity of Toy Show viewers will ensure the magic continues long after the Christmas decorations come down. Hundreds of thousands of children will have their lives transformed. There will be more essential supports including food, clothing, therapy as well as health and wellbeing services. In addition, play and creativity will become more accessible to all. The Foundation will work with leading child advocates and our partners in RTÉ to begin the process of distributing the Toy Show fund to every county. For now, our message to viewers is Thank You!”

The Late Late Toy Show with Irish Sign Language (ISL) was also available live on Friday night on RTÉ Player and RTÉ News, with over 13,000 streams to date and growing.  Patrick Kielty’s opening performance inspired by Elf was on RTÉ One and with ISL was the most-watched moment from the show with viewers bowled over by the show’s many young performers. Matilda star Alisha Weir, Sheamie and Bundee Aki and Peter O’Mahony’s surprise visit were the Top Moments of the night.  Patrick’s meeting with our ISL elf Amelia was the most watched Irish Sign Language moment of the night.   Alan Tyler, Head of Entertainment, Comedy and Music said: “We are delighted that Patrick’s first Late Late Toy show has connected so well with the audience. It is a testament to the hard work of the whole team who put together a truly unique and special show which brought the nation together, and, we hope, delivered a little Christmas magic to homes right across Ireland and across the world. All of us on the show owe a huge thank you to the audience whose generosity in donating to the Toy Show Appeal is both remarkable and humbling. It will make a real difference to children’s lives throughout the year.”

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