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Ryan Tubridy's First Late Late Show Guests: Where Are They Now?

Ryan Tubridy's First Late Late Show Guests: Where Are They Now?
By James Fenton Updated
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As Ryan Tubridy prepares to host his final edition of the Late Late Show, we thought we'd take a look back at how his first guests are doing.

On September 4th 2009, a then-36-year-old Tubridy officially took the reins from Pat Kenny on RTE's flagship chat show, and there were some stellar names to help ease him into his new role.

Brian Cowen was the first person to be interviewed by Tubridy in the new gig, and the then-Taoiseach was joined on the night by Cherie Blair, Joan Collins, David Gray and Sharon Corr.

Here's how the departing host got on on that opening night, and what his guests have been up to since.

Brian Cowen interviewed by Ryan Tubridy

With the eyes of the nation fixed on how Tubridy would slot into his new role, it made sense to invite the most powerful person in the country in for a chat.

It didn't take long for controversy to set it, as the host quizzed Cowen on his drinking habits, which had recently been brought up in the media.

Tubridy quickly offered an apology, perhaps sensing that his first interview was getting away from him, and later reverted to questions about the economic crisis of the time.


The Sunday Independent's Jody Corcoran subsequently called out Tubridy for his questions on Cowen's personal life, saying that his friend of 25 years had been "mugged in a two-faced, Creeping Jesus sort of way by a host who was, as I see it, too cowardly to stand up like a man and ask the hard question on his own".

Cowen remained in office until March 2011, and suffered a stroke back in 2019. He spoke about his health publicly last summer, and appears to be on the mend.

13 October 2009; An Taoiseach Brian Cowen T.D., speaking at the launch of 'The GAA - A People's History'. Hogan Stand, Croke Park, Dubin. Picture credit: Pat Murphy / SPORTSFILE

Brian McFadden

An interview with the former Westlife star also drew plenty of comment, both in Ireland and the UK.

The Dubliner spoke openly about various issues with former wife Kerry Katona, and mentioned that he was hoping to gain custody of the couple's two daughters.


Boyzone's Keith Duffy later stated that McFadden's decision to do the interview was "naive," and backed Tubridy over his hard line of questioning.

Duffy and McFadden have since gone on to form a touring duo known as Boyzlife, in which the pair perform old Boyzone and Westlife hits, while telling stories from their careers.

Cherie Blair

The wife of the former UK Prime Minister also joined Ryan for a conversation, all of two years after her husband left office.


Cherie, a barrister by trade, has written a number of books, and has twice been portrayed on screen by the late Helen McCrory.

Joan Collins

The Hollywood icon's appearance allowed Tubs to showcase his abilities at conducting interviews with some of the biggest names in entertainment.

Collins was 76 at the time of the interview, and is still going strong at the age of 90, recently appearing in a film adaptation of the Broadway musical Tomorrow Morning.


David Gray

The Welshman, whose 1999 album White Ladder is still the highest-selling record of all-time in Ireland, offered musical entertainment on the night.

At the time, he was promoting his eighth studio album Draw The Line, which featured the singles Fugitive and Full Steam.

Since his appearance on that opening night, Gray has released three more albums, most recently Skellig in 2021.


Sharon Corr

There will be a neat symmetry to Tubridy's final appearance on the Late Late Show on Friday, in that a member of The Corrs will feature, just like on his opening night 14 years ago.

Andrea Corr is set to join the likes of John Sheahan, Sharon Shannon and Moya Brennan for some huge musical numbers, as the Late Late audience says goodbye to Tubridy in style.

Ryan Tubridy farewell

Back in 2009, Corr's sister and bandmate Sharon appeared on Tubridy's first show, and she has since gone on to release three albums of her own.

Ryan Tubridy's final outing as Late Late Show host will air at 9.35pm on Friday night, before Patrick Kielty takes over in the autumn.

See Also: The 7 Cringiest Moments During Ryan Tubridy's Time As Host Of The Late Late Show

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