Need Weekend Plans? A Guided Tour Of Once Is The Ultimate Theatre Experience

It's in Dublin for a limited time only!

2. Once at the Olympia Theatre_2517

Once has been a popular show since it’s inception, the music, acting and dancing make it more than just your average play.

If you’re a fan of theatre, I’d highly recommend it, but to fully immerse yourself in the show and appreciate how much work goes into the project, you NEED to try out the guided tour.

While many of us think Airbnb is just for tourists looking to book a nice apartment, there are actually so many things you can enjoy in your own city through the website.

You can also use the site to find incredible experiences, from art to fashion to music and more.

One of the best examples of this is a hosted trip to Once in the Olympia hosted by the lovely Sinead and Annabel.

11. Once at the Olympia Theatre_2735

The hosted trip is more than just a quick guide to how old the theatre is and how many great artists have played there, but a fully immersive experience of the musical.

First, our host met us along with three others at stage door to take us through the stunning Olympia theatre.

Our guide Annabel then talked us briefly though the history of the place before bringing us to various different seats to get an idea of what people can see in different parts of the theatre.

We then met stage manager Donna Leonard, who talked us through her nightly routine, how she keeps everything in check and answered any questions we had.

Meeting Donna gave us a real sense of how much work goes into such a big production.

For anyone who knows, or has seen the show, you will know it’s full of music and dance, so meeting the instrument tecnician was one of the highlights of the night.

Instrument technician Niall gave us a sense of how much work goes into the music

Instrument technician Niall gave us a sense of how much work goes into the music

Niall went through all the instruments from the show, of which there are about thirty when you factor in a spare instrument for each, he also spoke about how little time he has to tune, change or fix any strings on instruments while the show is on.

With a better sense of how much goes on behind the scenes, we headed to the stage to check out the set, which is a traditional Irish bar, up close and personal.

Unlike many of the other theatres that might have stewards guarding the stage keeping audience members away, this show gives viewers the opportunity to actually order a drink from the bar on set.

Audience members can take to the stage to order drinks as the show begins

Audience members can take to the stage to order drinks as the show begins

While we were enjoying our drinks still standing on stage, the cast came out to join us for a session to kick off the show.

Unlike some plays with audience participation, you are not avoiding eye-contact and hoping you don’t get picked, instead you become part of the music, which feels just like a session in your local.

After the cast perform a mix of upbeat and more traditional songs, we take our seats to watch the show.

The story follows Guy and Girl who are both dealing with lost love, and finding each other through music. The sweet story is told mostly through songs, from a talented cast who can sing, dance and act.

9. Once at the Olympia Theatre_1294

As part of the hosted tour we got to meet the cast and crew after the show for photos and chats.

As a semi-regular theatre-goer this package was the perfect way to add an extra-dimension to seeing a show.

For me, the highlight was seeing Ronnie Drew’s son Phelim singing Rocky Road to Dublin while we were still on stage!

If you are interested in going to see Once, why not make the experience more complete by taking part in a guided tour.

The show ends this Saturday though, so if you’re interested in heading along do it soon!

Alternatively you can check out loads of other incredible experiences that AirBnB are now offering.

Megan Roantree

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