The Sydney Rose has blasted the Rose of Tralee festival.
Brianna Parkins, who made a powerful speech about Ireland’s Repeal the 8th movement during her TV interview with host Dáithí Ó Sé, claims the contestants were treated badly in order to make more interesting TV.
Writing in the Irish Times about the documentary, Road to the Dome, she said: “My bulls**t detector goes off and I surmise that this is not a documentary but reality TV. One girl wonders if they’ll turn the cameras off if we cry. I tell her that’s not how TV works.
Hitting out: Sydney Rose Brianna Parkins has slammed the Rose of Tralee Festival | RTE
“I’m angry when I take to the stage on Monday night. I’ve spent months defending the festival, convincing my boss, family and friends that this is an event that respects and celebrates women.
Brianna also revealed she was so worried after speaking out about the Repeal the 8th movement movement on stage that she told her parents to stop wearing T-shirts with her face on them and one woman stopped her young daughter from asking Brianna for her autograph.
She said: “The the threats come quickly. I tell my parents to stop wearing T-shirts with my face on them and to leave the banners at home. I don’t sleep that night.
“In the lobby a little girl comes over for an autograph, but when her mother reads my sash she pulls her away.”
Controversy: Brianna Parkins says she received threats after her speech about Ireland’s Repeal the 8th movement
And she was also scolded by the festival’s media manager.
“I get pulled into a room with the media manager, who tells me I’ve ‘let him down’.
“I tell him I feel the same way about having been exposed to the TV crew. He listens to me respectfully and tells me he won’t gag me or punish me,” Brianna explained.
Unhappy: Down Rose Fainche McCormack also hit out, saying the Roses were “manipulated, bullied and mistreated”
Brianna’s comments come after the Down Rose Fainche McCormack also hit out at the festival, claiming the contestants were “manipulated, bullied and mistreated”.
She said: “None of us signed up for a cheap reality television show and now unfortunately the Rose of Tralee is an experience I will never forget, for all the wrong reasons.”