Irish Production Company announces new ‘GAA USA’ project – filming starts in June

Dara Ó’Cinnéide, former Kerry GAA captain and TG4 presenter

Sónta Films have started pre production on a new four-part series 'GAA USA', which will offer an insight into Irish American history through the untold story of the GAA in the U.S.

Presented by former Kerry All-Ireland winning captain and TG4's Seó Spóirt presenter Dara Ó’Cinnéide, this series will will examine how it has evolved from its humble origins into a dynamic organization whose survival now depends on reaching out to non-Irish ethnic groups.

Principal photography begins this June when the team will visit Chicago and Boston and San Francisco, before travelling to Cleveland and New York later in the year. This four-part series will be released on TG4 in Autumn 2014.

In the 19th and 20th centuries, millions of Irish immigrants were cast upon the shores of America. For many, the experience was deeply traumatic, as they experienced feelings of dislocation, alienation and homesickness in the vast cities of New York, Chicago, Boston and San Francisco.

Yet a sense of shared identity helped the immigrant Irish to overcome this trauma. Nowhere was this better demonstrated than in their love of the sports they brought with them from their homeland – It is documented that as early as the 1780s hurling was played on the streets of New York.

The series will mix an adept historical overview and personal tales with archival material and modern day footage of Ó’Cinnéide retracing the remarkable story of the GAA in the U.S.

The show will explore how the GAA evolved from basic origins into a dynamic association that has established itself as the cultural, political and sporting organization of the Irish diaspora.

The show will all focus on many of the pitfalls and problems that the GAA encountered in the past and reflect it's current challenges.

At the core of each episode lies the human stories of a range of inspirational characters, without whose commitment and dedication, the GAA would never have survived.

Cast and production crew include award winning ‘Men at Lunch’ producer Éamonn Ó Cualáin; Director Seán Ó Cualáín; Director of Photography Réamonn Mac Donnacha; and Script writer Niall Murphy.

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