Shirley Temple Bar first appeared as a schoolgirl contestant in the 1997 Alternative Miss Ireland, which she entered obliviously and won effortlessly. Subsequently, Shirley worked the local cabaret and club scene for a few months until she was offered her career-defining role as bingo-caller in The George Bar in Dublin.
Bingo with Shirley Temple Bar quickly became a cult success and the show garnered a lot of media attention. Features in newspapers and on TV shows soon became personal columns in magazines & newspapers and appearances on TV & Radio chat shows and panel shows.
Two television documentaries were produced about Shirley: an IFTA-nominated Irish language documentary for TG4 (26 mins; 1999) and an English language documentary for RTE1 (54 mins; 2000). She also featured on radio and TV programmes for multiple networks, including ITV, BBC, MTV, CNN, Bravo, Channel 4 and all Irish stations.
In 2001, Shirley was asked to host the Irish National Lottery’s Telly Bingo programme on RTE1 daytime television. Shirley fronted the show (and sang her own theme tune) on Telly Bingo ‘twice a week’… and did so for three years before quitting ‘to spend more time on Bebo’. #spin
(The National Lottery released a press-release that claimed Shirley’s brother would take over as the host of Telly Bingo but Shirley insists this is fake news as she has never been in the same room as that man and offered a reward for any photos of them together.)
Over the (many, many) years, Shirley has continued to host her show in The George, racking up and impressive number of shows along the way. She also has regularly appeared at festivals, on stage, in film, on TV, in print and in poor quality videos on YouTube. Usually this is against her will and better judgement.
Since 1997, Shirley Temple Bar has aged. But she has not grown up.
Shirley Temple Bar is the creation of Declan Buckley. Visit his site here.