Entertainment

Jolene O'Hara: Good Vibrations is in my very bones – the show represents my home, the place I grew up, who I am...

Jolene O’Hara is playing Polly in Good Vibrations, the revival of the acclaimed 2014 musical by Glenn Patterson and Colin Carberry about Terri Hooley’s music shop and its role during the Troubles

Jolene O'Hara plays Polly in the upcoming Good Vibrations revival at the Grand Opera House
Jolene O'Hara plays Polly in the upcoming Good Vibrations revival at the Grand Opera House Jolene O'Hara plays Polly in the upcoming Good Vibrations revival at the Grand Opera House

How do you unwind at the weekend?

I love a good lie-in at the weekend, normally Monday to Tuesday in theatre world. Eventually I get up, have a long stretch and a glass of hot lemon water and maybe stick on an episode to start the day. If we’re heading out for the night, I love a wee spicy margarita from Rita’s cocktail bar to start things off. On Sunday, my mum does the best Sunday roast for the whole family which is lovely.  

What do you recall about weekends growing up?

Calling round to see my grandparents, aunties and uncles. My mum and dad have lots of siblings so there was always somebody to visit or calling by our house. Our cousins were always causing havoc in the garden. Every Saturday we would watch Live and Kicking which was finally replaced by SMTV Live with Ant and Dec. I played rounders in the garden with my sister and our friends, also out in the street.

Is there a must-listen weekend radio programme or podcast?

Stuff You Should Know with Josh and Chuck is great. I travel a lot so it’s perfect for sticking on in the car.

Do you have a must-watch TV programme or is it Netflix?

Schitt’s Creek is a must-watch TV programme. Breaking Bad or Dexter would be up there too and Ted Lasso which is funny with the right amount of cheese.

Is Sunday still special?

Sunday is still special in the O’Hara house. Mainly because of the Sunday roast- mum makes her own cauliflower cheese from scratch and it’s to die for. We also sometimes head over to the Devenish in Finaghy with my dad for a pint of Guinness.

Do you have a favourite eatery or is it a takeaway?

I am a Nando’s addict. People always make fun of me about it but I can’t resist a peri peri chip, hot chicken pitta and pineapple. Or Chi Chi Chinese at Finaghy Crossroads.

How do you feel on Sunday night about Monday morning?

I feel really lucky in that I love my job and getting to create theatre with a bunch of mates a lot of the time. Good Vibrations is in my very bones – the show represents my home, the place I grew up, who I am. Not everything is perfect here, but it’s full of exceptional beauty and is home to some of the friendliest people on the planet. After everything we’ve been through, I think that’s a pretty important message, and it’s a privilege to be a small part of telling it to a wider audience.

Good Vibrations, directed by Des Kennedy, runs at the Grand Opera House, Belfast from May 9-20

Jolene O'Hara
Jolene O'Hara Jolene O'Hara