The 31st annual BLOOMSDAY ON BROADWAY celebration of life, love, and language, in James Joyce's Ulysses will be a very special selection, "Music in Bloom". The show begins at 7pm and ends after midnight.
Each of the 18 episodes of Joyce's Ulysses celebrates a different organ of the human body and a different art. The SIRENS episode, which takes place in the Ormond Hotel bar and dining room is devoted to the human ear, and the art of music. Before turning to writing, young James Joyce's ambition was to become a concert tenor. ULYSSES is filled with music and songs, especially in the SIRENS episode, where Leopold Bloom is having his lunch, and listening to the men in the barroom flirting with the two barmaids (sirens) and singing great operatic selections and Irish songs.
The evening will consist of a reading of the entire text of SIRENS, interspersed with full performances of some of the music central to the episode's drama, ranging from the tenor aria "M'a parri" from MARTHA, to the Irish revolutionary ballad, "The Croppy Boy." Broadway star David Margulies (Angels in America) will perform the role of Mr. Bloom.
The extraordinary first three pages of SIRENS, a tapestry of abstract word-sounds that Joyce likened to the sound of an orchestra tuning up for a concert, will be performed by performance artist Adam Harvey (Finnegan's Grand Operoar).
The hours before and after SIRENS will also contain many musical selections found in the text of Ulysses, including the songs that Molly Bloom is supposed to be rehearsing while she is actually in bed with her paramour Blazes Boylan. These include "Love's Old Sweet Song" and "The Harp That Once Through Tara's Halls", not to mention Joyce's joking inclusion of "The Bloom is on the Rye". Musical Director Lanny Meyers and soprano Lisa Flanagan have curated the music of this year's Bloomsday on Broadway.
Other performers include Broadway star singers Judith Mok, Jesse Malgieri, Karl Scully, and Lisa Flanagan.
In the final two and one half hours of Bloomsday veteran actress Fionnula Flanagan (Lost) will give a complete, uncensored, reading of the final PENELOPE episode, Molly Bloom's nighttime thoughts leading up to her final, life-affirming words of the novel, "and yes I said yes I will Yes."
Bloomsday on Broadway will be streamed live on the Symphony Space website beginning at 7pm!
Brought to you in partnership with our friends at the Irish Arts Center.
Judith Mok's appearance, courtesy of Culture Ireland.