RTÉ's most closely-guarded secret was today unveiled by Ryan Tubridy ahead of Friday night's eagerly anticipated Late Late Toy Show. The magical, mystical wonderland world of Frozen has been revealed as the inspiration behind this year's show-stopping production, and Ryan said that his opening number is his "most outrageous" to date.
It's his 11th year in the driving seat on The Late Late Toy Show, with Ryan's opening sequence performance fast-becoming one of the most-eagerly anticipated parts of the show.
"There will be a lot of goof this year and that will be obvious as soon as I step out in the most outrageous of costumes,” Ryan said.“It involves a very toothy grin…even my own weren't sufficient for the occasion!”
"Family, nostalgia and the experience of watching the show together are at the heart of this year's show, Ryan added.
"This year, viewers will get a sense of family, drawing from Anna and Elsa in Frozen and Frozen 2. A lot of the emphasis this year is on family and coming together and gathering to watch the show, as they have done for decades. It's not a picture perfect portrayal of family, because every family is different, and they come in all shapes and sizes.
"It doesn't matter, once you are there together and are happy and surrounded by people you love, that's what it’s all about. People of all ages, sizes and walks of life come together. I'm asking everyone to put down their phone or tablet for two hours and talk about the show with each other."
Over 200 children from all around the country will participate in the live production from RTÉ's Studio 4 – as singers, performers and toy demonstrators. From the opening sequence, right until the very end of the show, a number of incredible surprises and special guest appearances are also in store. Hundreds of toys have been tested and will feature throughout the live production, and, of course, there will be a special nod to the late Gay Byrne.
This year's spectacular set is set to melt the coldest of hearts, and was created by the RTÉ production Design Department, led by Marcella Power. RTÉ's Costume and Make-Up departments, with costume led by Brigette Horan, have also been busily prepping the cast ahead of Friday's extravaganza.
Last year's show was the most-watched programme on Irish television for 2018, with more than 1.5 million people tuning in for The Greatest Showman themed extravaganza.
As with The Late Late Toy Show each year, a number of charities have nominated children to experience the magic of the set for themselves in advance of tonight’s show. This year children from the Jack and Jill Children's Foundation, Laura Lynn – Ireland’s Children’s Hospice and Children’s Health Ireland at Crumlin and Temple Street had a sneak preview of the set and played with the toys. All toys featured on the show will be donated to charity following the broadcast.
The Late Late Toy Show airs on RTÉ One on Friday, November 29 at 9.35pm