Health and Fitness

‘I’ll spend December covered in glitter, sure what more do you want?’ – The Irish Times

How are you planning to spend Christmas this year?

I’ll be at home in Malahide with my lovely family, feeling festive and eating rings around myself. Christmas is all the more magical now with my goddaughter Áine who will no doubt have 472 Christmas dresses bought for her this year. I’m playing Jack in Olly, Polly and the Beanstalk in the 3Olympia Theatre, so I’ll spend the majority of December covered in glitter, sure what more do you want?!

Best and worst Christmas movies?

I adore The Family Stone (there aren’t enough tissues in all of Ireland for that last scene) and the festive favourites Elf and Miracle on 34th Street. I know this may be controversial, but my least favourite is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.

Favourite Christmas tune?

You can’t beat a bit of O Holy Night. It’s just sensational. My sister Vanessa always sings it beautifully so I’ve come to love it over the years. Put on I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day and Wonderful Christmas Time and I’m absolutely elated! I also love (and I realise you only asked me for one) 2,000 Miles by The Pretenders and Christmas Wrapping by The Waitresses. Don’t get me started on the Kylie Christmas album…

Is religion an important aspect of Christmas for you?

My faith has always been important to me, so I do believe that there’s something to be said for at least acknowledging the very fundamental idea of Christmas. Now, I’m not asking us all to re-enact The Nativity and meander off to Bethlehem, but I’ve always been a firm believer in the power of hope. A little hope, a little kindness, and a nice big chunk of Brie and chutney sounds fairly saintly to me.

Best Christmas present ever?

When I was about 12 years old I got a Furby and I nearly collapsed. It was the year that they were the big toy and you couldn’t get one in Ireland for love nor money. My dad persuaded a friend of his who was going to New York into smuggling one back for him. I’ve never been so ecstatic on Christmas morning! It was absolutely gorgeous and I still have it in the box. My mum was less impressed – the thing never shut up talking.

Christmas jumper yes or no?

A ridiculous slogan emblazoned across your chest as you horse down another hot chocolate while gossiping with the gals? Heaven!

What kind of Christmas shopper are you? Black Friday sales/ Irish-made all the way/ passing on unwanted gifts?!

How dare you even deign to suggest that I’m a re-gifter? The very idea! Well actually, I’m all for a cheeky re-gift. To be fair though, I’m usually quite prepared. From the start of November on I’ll always keep an eye out for things that I think friends and family will enjoy.

James Patrice plays Jack in Olly, Polly & The Beanstalk at the 3Olympia Theatre from Wednesday, December 21st, 2022 until Sunday, January 8th, 2023. Tickets from €27 at

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