Ferdia's star turn at cinema
a MEMBER of the audience at a performance of Sing Street at the Wexford Omniplex found himself the object of a lot of admiring attention last week, when others in the crowd realised they had a star in their midst.
For there watching the film was one of its stars, Ferdia Walsh Peelo, who plays a 14-year-old named Cosmo in the new movie about life in Dublin in the 1980s, and which is getting rave reviews.
Although he was born and reared in Wicklow Ferdia has strong links with Wexford town as his mother Toni Walsh is a native of Fisher's Row.
The daughter of Rose and the late Tony Walsh, Toni went to St John of God School before attending the Loreto.
She then moved to Dublin where she met her husband Mick Peelo and the couple and their first two children, Tadhg and Oisin moved to Milltown Lane in Ashford. The couple's third and fourth child Ferdia and Siofradh were born following the move.
Toni herself is a soprano and also teaches at her former alma mater, the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama. Sons Tadgh and Oisin are also talented musicians while youngest Siofradh is learning to play the violin.
Ferdia himself started studying as a boy soprano when he was seven years old, winning all sorts of plaudits for his voice, appearing on the Late Late Toy Show and singing solo at Wexford Opera House.
At the mere age of 12 he secured his first professional contract with Ireland's national touring opera, the Opera Theatre Company.
The film, which got its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah earlier this year, has been receiving rave reviews and has been hailed as a 'wonderfully authentic and sweet natured tale of how music can save your life'.