Today, Lyons Gold Blend presented Dubliner Paul O’Brien with the title of Ireland’s Top Storyteller, following thier nationwide search. Paul was selected from a huge number of entrants by a judging panel of comedian Karl Spain, author and actress Claudia Carroll, and storyteller Clare Muireann Murphy. The trio rated Paul O’Brien the top of the talkers with the gift of the gab, and presented him with a €10,000 prize.
In total 120 budding story tellers entered the competition with stories ranging from, fact to fiction, from everyday life, to favourite childhood memories, some folk tales and some modern takes on classic children's stories. From the 120, 10 finalists were selected to compete at the National Final in Dublin where they completed a storytelling challenge for the judging panel to battle for the title of Ireland’s Top Storyteller. The final 10 were selected by public vote on www.lyonstea.ie/tellusyourstory (the top six) and through various regional radio competitions (remaining 4).
The competition called on entrants to use the famed Irish ability to exaggerate and colourfully enhance a story through words and phrases. This played directly into Lyons latest advertising campaign around talk being the ‘secret ingredient’ in Lyons Tea and ‘richer talk’ being added to the tea that gives Lyons Gold Blend its richer, full bodied taste.
Speaking at the National Final, Liz Finlay, Marketing Manager, Lyons Tea said, “Irish people all love a good story over a cuppa. Our Gold Blend richer tasting tea celebrates the telling of rich and colourful stories and our search for Ireland’s Top Storyteller highlighted how popular our storytelling tradition continues to be, with so many entries and budding storytellers eager to compete. Congratulations to Paul on winning the competition and I hope he keeps up the storytelling!”
Author and actress Claudia Carroll, said, “Simultaneously the best craic I’ve had in weeks, and the toughest decision I’ve had to make. We almost came to blows in the judging room, but I think we’re all agreed at the end of the day that the best person won - we’ve found Ireland’s Top Storyteller!"
Comedian Karl Spain said, “It was great to judge the competition, all the contestants were very different and very entertaining in their stories. Any of three second round finalists could have won. Pity we couldn’t share the cash amongst ourselves. We weren’t entirely in agreement in the judging panel, we probably would’ve been throwing drinks over each other, but it was Lyons tea so it was too hot! I really enjoyed myself, it’s always nice to judge people!”
"Good storytelling requires a lot of different skills and we saw a high standard today. It was difficult to choose and each of the finalists could easily go on to work with stories. Also, I was delighted to see such an excellent response from the younger demographic, it just shows storytelling is alive and well in Ireland today", said Clare Muireann Murphy, renowned Irish storyteller.
- Lyons Gold Blend tea is a blend of finest Kenyan, Assam and Ceylon teas.
- Lyons Tea employs expert master blenders and tasters to select the best blends and combination of some of the finest teas from Kenya, Assam from India and Ceylon from Sri Lanka to produce the highest quality tea. Lyons Tea is available from leading supermarkets and retailers nationwide.
- Lyons is Ireland’s number one tea brand with 43.1% market share***; Lyons is an iconic Irish brand with more than 100 years of tradition in Ireland, having started business in Dublin in 1902 near Christ Church Cathedral. It is now owned by Unilever Ireland.
- Lyons Tea is Ireland’s favourite tea. The Lyons Tea range includes Lyons Gold Blend, Lyons Original Blend, Lyons Gold Blend Reserve, Lyons Kenya Blend, and Lyons Decaffeinated Tea. Lyons Green Tea is available in original, with Lemon and with Mint. For further information on Lyons Tea visit www.lyonstea.ie
- Lyons tea is currently working with the Rainforest Alliance - independent experts in sustainability and by 2012 all our tea will only come from Rainforest Alliance Certified™ farms.
- For more information visit www.lyonstea.ie