The Olympia Theatre in Dame Street, Dublin has been a place of entertainment for more than 140 years. The Erin Music Hall opened at the site in 1879 and over the years, the stage has played host to music, theatre, and comedy, featuring the best of local and international talent. Such is the energy of the performances that have taken place here, it is not hard to understand why some choose to stay long after the curtain has fallen.
In 2008, Magician Joe Daly was preparing for his show ‘Magick Macabre’ and had a strange experience in his dressing room. He told the Irish Independent of his experience.
I didn’t spend much time in the room on Monday or Tuesday because of technical rehearsals. On Wednesday morning I got in early and was chilling out in the dressing room when I got an uneasy feeling. It’s hard to describe it, it was like a presence. I just didn’t like the room. But I didn’t say anything to anyone about it. The next time I asked for the key the stage doorman said to me ‘good luck up there, that’s the haunted one’. Then I found out that John Brogan, the former stage manager, swears he once saw something there.
Joe decided to forfeit his private dressing room and share with other cast members rather than stay in that room alone.
John Brogan worked at the Olympia Theatre for 33 years. One Sunday afternoon, early on in his tenure, he watched as a blue light floated out of one of the dressing rooms, up the corridor towards and past him, before going around the corner.
Sadly, Maureen Grant – a well-loved member of the theatre staff – passed away in 2021. In 2015, Maureen shared some of her own encounters with the Irish Independent. She recalled several strange experiences with light switches malfunctioning, the sound of a baby crying, and a startling personal encounter in which she fled a changing room while changing between shifts. Things got so intense that the theatre summoned a medium, and Maureen showed him around.
The minute we walked into the toilet he (the medium) was startled and said “I’ve the answer before we begin – this is where the crying baby is. It’s a boy and his second name is Parker” The staff had already christened the baby ghost Charlie (it’s better than Casper) so it became Charlie Parker.
A poltergeist made itself at home in the theatre bar where glasses would fly off shelves before smashing on the floor, and coins would jump in the tills. The ghost of a pallbearer also began to appear in the centre aisle, although he was considered friendly, and staff were unperturbed by him.
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