Emcee Colum McCann and actor Patrick Fitzgerald perform during a reading from “Ulysses” outside Ulysses on June 16 last year. PHOTO: PETER MCDERMOTT
By Irish Echo Staff
June 16, 1904 fell on a Thursday, while the 50th anniversary was a Wednesday. The latter saw the first known celebration of Bloomsday, a rather elaborate pub crawl across Dublin organized by two literary giants – Patrick Kavanagh and Flann O’Brien, aka Myles na gCopaleen. Sixty-four years later, much to the delight of Joyceans worldwide, June 16 falls on a Saturday. Origin Theatre Company’s 5th Annual Bloomsday breakfast will accordingly begin at a leisurely 11:30 a.m. at Bloom’s Pub, 208 East 58th St. (between 2nd and 3rd Aves.) in Manhattan. Go to origintheatre.org and click on “calendar” for tickets.
Lawyer and writer Jim Rodgers with Aedin Moloney (whose performance of "Molly Bloom's Soliloquy" is considered the annual highlight of the afternoon) at the 2017 Bloomsday celebration outside Ulysses bar on Stone Street. PHOTO: PETER MCDERMOTT
Meanwhile downtown, the annual open-air event organized at the Stone Street bar named for the great novel itself will kick off at the usual 1 p.m., but the entertainment continues through to an impressive 1 a.m. Sunday morning. The readings from “Ulysses” at Ulysses bar will take place through 5:30, Saturday afternoon, with National Book Award-winning novelist Colum McCann again in the role of emcee.
Back uptown on the West Side, “Bloomsday on Broadway XXXVIII” begins at 7 p.m. and promises a “cavalcade of Joyceans, musicians, and actors from stage and screen.” For tickets, go to symphonyspace.org.
And Milwaukee will celebrate James Joyce and “Ulysses” with readings and songs from the book at Celtic MKE Center, 1532 N. Wauwatosa Ave. from 2 p.m. to 4:30.
And at Freddy’s…
The literary fun continues into Sunday night with “From Dublin to Brooklyn: A Cabaret of Words,” at Freddy’s Bar, 627 Fifth Ave., near Prospect Avenue in the borough of the title, starring Rosie Schaap and Nicole Rourke, who met at a protest in the aforementioned city back in 1991. The official kickoff time is 8:30.
Schaap is perhaps best known to Echo readers as a loyal supporter of Tottenham, but she is also the author of “Drinking With Men,” a memoir published to acclaim in 2013, and she wrote the New York Times Magazine’s “Drink” column from 2011 to 2017. Schaap, who is currently on the faculty of the MFA program in creative writing Fairleigh Dickinson University, will be reading from new work.
Rourke is an actor, writer and spoken-word performer based in Dublin. She trained in physical theatre in the Middle East and has worked on a wide variety of theatre productions and spoken-word shows in Ireland and around the world. She is co-founder and co-director of Big Smoke Writing Factory in Dublin. Rourke will perform her monologue set, "Tea or Gin & Other Stories."
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