Father Ted is getting a musical: here's everything we know so far

By The Newsroom
Monday, 4th June 2018, 11:14 am
Updated Tuesday, 5th June 2018, 9:16 am

Prepare yourself for the prospect of 'My Lovely Horse' on stage. Father Ted writer Graham Linehan has revealed that he and fellow creator Arthur Mathews are working on a musical sequel to their much-loved TV show.

Linehan has said it will be "the real final episode of Father Ted".

Here's everything we know about it so far.

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    It's inspired by Donald Trump and Jeremy Corbyn

    Father Ted's masterminds were struck by divine inspiration when they saw Donald Trump become US President, and Jeremy Corbyn elected as Labour leader.

    After seeing those unlikely victories, they had the idea of "the least qualified man in the world becoming Pope".

    Yes, that's right. The musical will see Ted Crilly swap Craggy Island for the Vatican. Bishop Brennan must be furious.

    "When Trump won and Corbyn won [the Labour leadership] I kind of thought, 'Maybe Ted has a chance'," Linehan told the BBC.

    Getting him to that position in the first place is likely to involve some typically surreal "shenanigans", he added.

    My Lovely Horse's composer is back

    Neil Hannon, the frontman of The Divine Comedy who composed both Father Ted's main theme and 'My Lovely Horse' for the Eurovision episode, is working with Linehan and Mathews on the songs.

    Hannon's renowned talent for musical humour should lend itself well to a stage version.

    When it comes to song titles, may we humbly suggest: 'That money was just resting in my account', 'That would be an ecumenical matter', and 'Go on go on go on...'

    No word on casting yet

    It's not yet clear whether the likes of Pauline McLynn, who played Mrs Doyle, or Ardal O'Hanlon, who co-starred as the dim-witted Dougal, will return.

    The TV show's iconic Ted, Dermot Morgan, is sadly no longer with us of course. February saw the 20th anniversary of his death.

    Father Jack's actor, Frank Kelly, also passed away in 2016.

    Finding the right replacements for the roles of Ted and Jack (assuming the latter joins Ted in the Vatican) is likely to be one of the production's biggest challenges.

    A 2019 debut?

    Linehan says he hopes the show will debut on stage next year. But there is no firm date as yet.

    (Photo: Channel 4)

    More than twenty years on from Father Ted's last outing in the comedy show, which aired between 1995 and 1998, its creators are describing returning to Ted as "putting on a pair of old slippers".

    Enthusiasts will be hoping that watching the musical proves much the same.

    [Main image: Channel 4]