An Irish documentary about the Burren is set to be broadcast on US television, with a potential reach of 200 million people.
In ‘The Burren: Heart of Stone’ viewers will be treated to a visually immersive, thought- provoking story about the resilience and beauty of the Burren, the people and the place. The documentary presents new evidence of human activity in Ireland 20,000 years earlier than previously known.
Narrated by multi-award-winning actor Brendan Gleeson, the documentary received critical acclaim when it premiered on Irish television in 2021 – capturing 1million viewers and rave reviews.
The 2-part series created by Irish film maker Katrina Costello, of Silver Branch Films will be broadcast to 90% of US households to 200million people on Public Broadcasting TV station over a 12-month period.
The programme will get repeated airings in every part of the USA and will enjoy prime time exposure on Earth Day, April 22. It will be continue to be screened on the network for the next 12 months.
Speaking about the programme’s viewers, Ms Costello said: “I see them making their way over greenways and rugged tracks the way their ancestors might have done. I see them standing on the shoreline, gulping great lungs full of salty air, contemplating what and who tread these paths before them.
“I hope my work will inspire these visitors in recognising the immeasurable value in treading delicately on their way, resonating in nature with a deeper understanding of the fragility of our wonderful wildlife networks.”
“The most striking thing for me about the Burren, is that both the landscape and the people of the Burren have evolved to be shaped and dependent of and on each other, like no other place in the world.
All around us we have evidence of our ancestors, not just in the Tombs, Forts, Stonewalls and Hollywell’s but in the fields, the woodlands and here in this cave, we have evidence of people who went seeking enlightenment during the last climatic downturn, which was roughly 3000 years ago. Untangling all these mysteries, is a highly complicated affair, but our cast of local experts are at the leading edge of discovery and share these amazing insights that are endlessly fascinating.
For me the most important task now, is to manage sustainable ecotourism and I am collaborating with the Burren Ecotourism Network, a group of over 60 tourism and hospitality businesses in the region, who have a passion for the Burren and who can bring visitors into the landscape, accommodate their stay and make it a wholesome experience.
Jarlath O’Dwyer, CEO of the Burren Ecotourism network said: “We are delighted to work with Katrina Costello to promote this excellent documentary to the international audience on the PBS Network.”
“From a tourism perspective, this is a great opportunity to showcase the Burren region to the North American market. The footage captures the essence of the natural environment in a way that many have never seen, while the information delivered by the experts who are interviewed is truly astounding. We already know that there is a huge appetite among Americans to reconnect with their Irish and European heritage, and Burren Heart of Stone is a real window to the distant past for them.” He continued
“Katrina’s film delves deep, revealing details about the genetic story of the Irish people in a vivid and fascinating way. We are confident that given the huge Irish diaspora, this film will have an international appeal, and will motivate people to visit the Burren.”
The Burren programs are available on demand here.
US audiences can enter their zip code into www.silverbranch.ie to learn when the programs are screening their state.