Gráinne Seoige says moving to South Africa helped her “reconstruct” herself

Gráinne Seoige Pic: Evan Doherty

Gráinne Seoige is a staple of Irish telly.

But for five years, she didn’t even live on our shores.

She moved to South Africa with her husband, Leon Jordaan in 2016. However, she chose to move back to Ireland in 2021.

We sat down with Gráinne to mark 25 years of VIP Magazine, and look back at her incredible career as well.

Speaking about someone who impacted her, she says that it has to be her husband.

“Personally, my husband Leon. Meeting him and moving to the other side of the world and living in a different culture was a huge learning experience,” she explains.

Gráinne Seoige Pic: Evan Doherty

“In Europe, we have up until this point anyway, lived quite a safe life. Our life is sophisticated and we take a lot for granted; we take peace for granted.

“We can shut our doors and be fairly confident we’ll be okay but South Africa taught me a different way of living and it challenged me, away from where there may have been preconceived perceptions of me, to rebuild and reconstruct myself.”

She also took the opportunity to speak passionately about the conflict in Palestine saying she is “proud” of how Ireland is handling it.

“I think Ireland has a connection with Palestine because we feel the generational pain of being colonised. But it’s not about being anti-Semitic or anti-Palestine, it’s simply about right and wrong and this is wrong. I really hope more international pressure continues to pile on.”

To read our full interview with Gráinne pick up the June issue of VIP Magazine, on shelves nationwide now!

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