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One of the Roses has accused the festival of 'manipulating and bullying' contestants

Fainche McCormack is unhappy with the filming process for the documentary Road to the Dome.

THE DOWN ROSE has accused the Rose of Tralee Festival of “manipulating and bullying” the participants for the purpose of a fly-on-the-wall documentary.

14100357_1297122503632403_1594472113891386971_n Source: Facebook/Rose of Tralee International Festival

Fainche McCormack has spoken out about the filming of Road to the Dome, which was aired prior to the contest on Monday evening.

The Roses were filmed at all stages in the run up to the finals, including the selection process where the 65 Roses were whittled down to 32 for the live shows.

In a post on the official Rose of Tralee Facebook page, McCormack said her emotions had been “manipulated” for the purpose of the programme:

I and my fellow Rose sisters did not sign up for a cheap reality television show in which our emotions would be manipulated for entertainment purposes…Cameras intrusively followed us all week and asked inappropriate probing questions; asking one girl what colour underwear she was wearing right before she went on stage, what’s acceptable about that?

13256029_524103167791403_1103834479733624364_n Source: Facebook/Down Rose Centre

“I could go on for days about the many ways we were manipulated, bullied and mistreated,” she continued.

It’s just a shame that television viewing numbers become more important than the truly amazing girls that got hurt and that now have to deal with the emotional trauma of the whole, quite frankly disgusting and cruel, ordeal.

fainchemccormack Source: Facebook/Rose of Tralee International Festival

In a joint statement, RTÉ and the Rose of Tralee Festival said all 65 Roses were aware of the filming from the outset, and the festival was happy with the finished programme.

However, they have agreed to review the filming process ahead of next year’s contest:

We regret that the Down Rose, Fainche McCormack, was upset at elements of the filming process for the documentary and RTÉ and the Rose of Tralee Festival have agreed to review the process for next year.

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