National College of Ireland in conversation with Riverdance founder and RTÉ chair Moya Doherty

Prove to yourself what you can do at National College of Ireland

National College of Ireland in conversation with Riverdance founder and RTÉ chair Moya Doherty

Newtalk's Bobby Kerr in conversation with RTÉ chair Moya Doherty at the National College of Ireland

National College of Ireland is hosting a series of lunchtime talks with Ireland’s top entrepreneurs as it prepares to welcome the next generation of business leaders through its doors this September.

The 'In Conversation With' series at the college campus in Dublin's IFSC is all about hearing from the people working right at the cutting edge of industry - and discovering how National College of Ireland can help you get there.

Full time courses in everything from Entrepreneurship, Business and Marketing to HR and Management are enrolling now for a September start.

Newstalk's Bobby Kerr kicked off the series with RTÉ Chairwoman and Riverdance co-founder Moya Doherty.

Doherty got her start in RTÉ as a secretary over 35 years ago before going on to a career that has taken her right around the world and back.

As a presenter, producer and co-founding director of Tyrone Productions, she has seen huge change in the industry over the years – but it was Riverdance that really put her on the map.

“I think in many ways Riverdance was grounded in the future,” she said.

“I think those of us who worked on it were always more interested in the future than in the past.

“Even though it took from our culture, our history and our tradition; it was a futuristic piece of work for its time. Maybe that is one of the reasons it still remains popular today.”

The seven-minute performance will go down as one of the most famous moments in Eurovision history – but its evolution into a full-length production is what ensured its place in history.

“That was the most interesting and the most fantastic and the most frightening period,” she said. “Because it all happened within about nine months."

“Bill [Whelan] wrote the entire score in less than seven months; which is unheard of.

“I knew that if we didn’t produce the full show prior to the next Eurovision, we would have lost our moment.

“It was seat of the pants stuff and you would never advise anyone to do it. To work like that; to take that risk - but there was just this moment in time and it swept us all up.”

From her position as RTÉ chair, Doherty warns that the industry is now changing so dramatically it is hard to tell what challenges the next generation will face.

“I think generally Irish media as we know it is in crisis,” she said. “As is global media.”

“Unless we make profound and dramatic change in how we approach the communication industry; we will become irrelevant."

That said, she believes it is a fascinating time to get started – even if the road to success now is very different to the one she walked.

“I am really interested in what happens in the future," she said.

“In so many ways our models are outdated and those who are in colleges like this will just come out and leapfrog all of us – because they will see the future.”

You can listen back to the full conversation here:

Next up in the series:

  • Alison Cowzer, Entrepreneur and Dragon's Den investor – Thursday June 21st.
  • Dómhnal Slattery, Avalon CEO and aviation mogul – Friday June 29th

Entrance is free but places are limited – register for free here.

Prove to yourself what you can do at National College of Ireland. Our full and part-time courses give you the tools you need to realise your ambition. Visit to find out more.