Oscar winning actor Matthew McConaughey has revealed how much his Irish roots mean to him – and how he hopes to immerse his kids in Irish culture.
The Dallas Buyers Club star has Irish heritage from both parents and is married to Brazilian model and designer, Camila Alves. The couple have three children together.
He told the Irish Sun: “My kids are really privileged to call themselves Brazilian Irish. Irish Brazilian, how great is that? Connected to two of the most vibrant, colourful, exciting cultures on the planet. Both very different yet with so many similarities. It’s beautiful. It’s a gift.”
So much so that he wants the children to make the most of their heritage and to take it all in – including learning the language.
He added: “I gotta keep up the Gaelic. I want them reading the literature. I want Riverdancing. I want them saying ‘grand’ and ‘lunatic” to the marvelous.
When they’re older, I want to send them to that Irish language summer camp you guys do. It’s like a rite of passage for you guys, isn’t it? When you’re teenagers. I want them fluent – which means I gotta do a crash course too.”
He spoke of visiting Ireland and how quickly he was made to feel at home by the people and the culture.
He said: “I walked those streets, walked into tiny pubs with giant welcomes and warm hearts. That ‘f*** it, pull up a stool, tell me your story, I’ll tell you mine’, attitude, I loved it. That was paradise to me. I was coming home. I made friends fast. I sang. I danced – heard stories and tales and jokes and anecdotes I’ll remember for a lifetime.
“I was back with my people. Take me home to my people.”
Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcalling
More articles on tracing your ancestors
Check out the Ireland Calling YouTube Channel