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Imelda May opens up about filming 'emotional' documentary with father and late mother

Imelda's mother Madge passed away in November
Imelda May | Sky Arts

Imelda May | Sky Arts

Clodagh Meaney

Imelda May has opened up about filming an emotional new documentary with her father, and her late mother.

“It was the last thing that she was in that was filmed and it’s because I wanted to go back to my community,” she said of the new Sky Arts documentary Voices of Ireland.

“Because like I said, community and family is a big part of this documentary so I couldn’t exclude my community and my family because they’ve been a huge part of my life.”

“So I said to dad, ‘I have to have you in it’. And he wheeled out mam as well, got her out of the bed, dressed her all up and brought her up the street and that was one of her favourite things to do was ramble up the street and say hello to all the neighbours.”

“She was the queen of the Liberties, she did so much for the Liberties in her lifetime and fought for the area and fought for the kids,” she said.

“It was lovely that the community gathered together and gave all of us great comfort because a lot of the neighbours are like our family. She got a big round of applause.”

Imelda revealed that she’s not ready to look back at her fond memories of late mother Madge.

Appearing on the Six O’Clock Show she said: “My brother sent me that but it’s only been a couple of weeks.”

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“My sisters are sending videos and pictures but I’m not ready to go there yet. It’s too raw. I wish I kept every note she ever wrote to me. But I have her in here [my heart].”

Her mother Madge Clabby passed away in her sleep on November 17th aged 94 with her husband Tony by her side.

In a beautiful tribute posted on her official Facebook page, Imelda said “our dearest darling mother passed away yesterday. She drifted gently in her sleep and took her last breath, in her own bed with her beloved husband Tony by her side”.

"We couldn’t have wished for better,” she added. “She deserved all. The effects of her fierce strength, infinite compassion, generosity, determination, quick wit, humour, vibrancy, sharp mind and deep spirit will outlive her and endure.

"Our matriarch, our supreme queen, has gone to the awaiting ancestors. The sorrow is deep our hearts are hurting but gratitude is abundant and love all consuming."

The Dublin singer also opened up about how making the documentary made her miss home as she currently lives in London with her boyfriend.

“I’m back and forth all the time when there’s no major pandemic or lockdown but I miss the people in Ireland more and more and the culture that we have.

“And so I will eventually come back.”

The 47-year-old is currently dating fellow musician Niall McNamee.

Meeting through mutual friends back in 2018, things only got romantic between them during the Covid lockdown.

Niall, who is 27, was born in Leicester in 1994 to Irish parents.

Part 1 of Imelda’s documentary Voices of Ireland is streaming on NOW TV.


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