Riverdance Blog

PR trip to Ljubljana, Slovenia – Day 1

Day 1: 5th June 2009
by Julian Erskine

6.30 am Friday 5th June saw Maria Buffini, Niamh Eustace and I gather around the Ryanair desk in Dublin airport to pool our luggage and try to defeat the Ryanair 15kg luggage limit…
We were heading to Ljubljana, not because we couldn’t decide who to vote for in the European elections, but because we were doing 2 days of press and publicity to launch the first ever visit of Riverdance to Slovenia next October.
Inevitably the conversation soon turned to the dreadful events of the previous weekend and the loss of our friend and colleague, Eithne Walls. Still hard to believe or understand and very difficult to accept.

After landing in Stanstead at 9.30 we then faced into a 4 ½ hour wait for our connection onwards. Despite the pleasant company, 4 ½ hours in Stanstead is a long haul and there is only so much Starbucks that the body can handle. Our wait was broken and brightened by the passing through of Paul Bailey who was en route to Ireland for his granny’s 95th birthday! Finally our flight was called and we headed to Gate 13 and our trip to Ljubljana.
As we flew in over Slovenia we were surprised to see how green it was, far greener than Ireland (but just to remind us of home – it was raining when we landed). We were met at the airport by Neza Kozar from AMC Studio – our promoters in the territory.

Straight to the hotel (the interestingly named Austrian Trend) for a quick turnaround and straight into the interviews with the AMC Studio Press Officer and Katya who was asking questions on behalf of some of the local publications as her English was perfect and she would be doing the translations for the respective papers.

Leon Ribnikar, our promoter, had introduced me to the Press Officer as Pierre. I spent the evening calling him Pierre until Katya corrected me and told me his name was Dennis. “But” I said “Leon said he was Pierre”. “No” says Katya “Leon said he was PR!”Another Lost in Translation moment..

Maria, Niamh and Leon

Neza took us to dinner in the hotel where we sampled some local foods but the great revelation of the night was Slovenian wine, maybe I have just never spotted the Slovenian section in Tesco, but they make some really fine wines and it’s a shame that they do not seem to be available in Ireland.

Niamh and Neza

Until tomorrow,

Julian Erskine

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