Nov 26 2007 Posted: 00:00 GMT
One of Ireland's best known actors and most appreciated sons will be conferred tomorrow (Tuesday, 27 November) with a Degree of Doctor of Arts (honoris causa) at National University of Ireland, Galway. Gabriel Byrne is one of the best known actors in the world and he will be conferred as part of the winter conferring at NUI Galway along with over 800 students from across the faculties and schools. Gabriel Byrne started his acting career with Ireland's Focus Theatre before joining London's Royal Court Theatre in 1979. His film debut came soon after, in John Boorman's 1981 Arthurian epic, Excalibur. He has worked with some of cinema's leading directors, including the Coen Brothers, Wim Wenders, Jim Jarmusch, Ken Loach, John Boorman, David Cronenberg and Bryan Singer. Moving between independent and studio films, in addition to producing three pictures and writing two, he has starred in 35 feature films, including Miller's Crossing, The Usual Suspects, Into the West, The End of Violence, Dead Man, Vanity Fair and Spider. Rod Stoneman, Director of the Huston School of Film & Digital Media, said, "Gabriel Byrne is an artist whose imagination and performances have offered us irreplaceable ideas and images and we are pleased to honour him for this. His involvement with Irish cultural activities and charitable works is exemplary, reflecting a generosity of spirit and commitment to his homeland." Students will graduate throughout the day from the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences; College of Engineering and Informatics; Faculty of Law; Faculty of Commerce; College of Science; and College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies. Speaking ahead of the conferring, President of NUI Galway, Dr Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, said, "We in NUI Galway are delighted to honour Gabriel Byrne as an outstanding Irish actor, who is respected internationally as a master of his craft. We re especially pleased that on the day we graduate the first students from new and innovative programmes in film and digital media, that we are honoured by the presence of Gabriel Byrne, who receives a Doctor of Arts for his outstanding contribution to Irish and international film." Some students at the conferring ceremony will be the first to graduate from certain new courses, such as the MA in Advanced Learning Skills, MA in Philosophy: Ethics, Culture and Global Change, MA in Digital Media, MA Production and Direction, and MA Public Advocacy and Activism.