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Category: Music

Bella Musica: Songs of Joyce

Bella Musica presents a special Bloomsday recital with songs mentioned by Joyce as well as some light excerpts from Ulysses. The programme will include popular hits of the time such as “The Low Back’d Car,” “Love’s Old Sweet Song,” “The Green Isle of Erin,” “She Is Far From The Land,” “I Dreamt I Dwelt In Marble Halls,” and more.  A particularly special treat will be a charming song Joyce wrote the lyrics to called “Out by Donnycarney.”

The concert features Blathnaid Nicholson (soprano), John Rownan (tenor), and Didzis Kalniņš (piano). For any questions about the recital, please email or call at 085 130 3259.

About the artists:

Bláthnaid Nicholson is a soprano from Co. Kildare with a first class honours from University College Dublin in both BA Music & Drama.  Currently singing with the Irish National Opera, she also won several prizes at this year’s Feis Ceoil including the Percy Whitehead Cup, and the Veronica Dunne Ensemble Competition.  Recent operatic engagements include Clorinda in Rossini’s La Cenerentola, Aunt in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, Julia Bertram in Dove’s Mansfield Park, cover for Lurline in Wallace’s Lurline, and as part of the BVOF Chorus in Blackwater Valley Opera Festival’s most recent productions – Verdi’s Macbeth and Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice. Bláthnaid has represented the Blackwater Valley Opera Festival at their recitals in conjunction with The Castlemartyr Resort and Waterford Whisky Distillery in 2023, and performed a Young Artist Recital as part of Boyle Arts Festival 2022. Other notable engagements include soprano solos in National Concert Hall, Dublin, Carnegie Hall, New York and 3Arena, Dublin.

John Rownan is a tenor from Dublin but trained in classical singing in Bucharest, Romania, where he performed in two recitals for the Irish Embassy including a noteworthy Bloomsday Recital he prepared in 2017.  John took further training in Greece and worked with the Hellenic Opera Corporation and Greek Opera Festival, where he performed in roles such as Pinkerton in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, Rodolfo in Puccini’s La Boheme, and Don Basilio in Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro, among others. John has since performed in roles and given recitals across Europe, including for several opera productions by Opera Classica Europa in Germany and The Netherlands. In 2023, John founded Bella Musica Recitals to present a variety of popular music events to excite and delight.

Didzis Kalniņš is an award-winning pianist originally from Latvia but who moved to Dublin in 2016 where he has since completed a Doctorate in Music at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. He now works as a soloist, chamber musician, and teacher. He regularly performs at renowned venues such as the National Concert Hall, Christ Church Cathedral Dublin, The National Gallery, and The Mansion House amongst others. Didzis has also given recitals for audiences internationally in countries such as Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Latvia, Estonia and Brazil.

Tickets are €22 general, €18 concession. Doors open at 5pm for a 5:15pm start.

Bloomsday at MoLI – Museum of Literature Ireland

Come celebrate Bloomsday in MoLI – Museum of Literature Ireland on St. Stephen’s Green. MoLI is situated in the Newman House, where James Joyce (and Stephen Dedalus) went to university when it was the campus of University College.

5PM: Dedalus Lecture with Fintan O’Tolle

Journalist and author Fintan O’Toole delivers the museum’s annual lecture inspired by Ulysses.

Fintan O’Toole is a writer and author. His books include We Don’t Know Ourselves: A Personal History of Ireland Since 1958Heroic Failure: Brexit and the Politics of Pain, and Ship of Fools: How Stupidity and Corruption Sank the Celtic Tiger. A member of the Royal Irish Academy, he is a winner of the European Press Prize and the Orwell Prize. He is also professor of Irish letters at Princeton University.

Tickets are €18.

7-10PM: MoLI Bloomsday Garden Party

Round off your Bloomsday celebrations at the MoLI Bloomsday Garden Party – held across the museum’s beautiful exhibitions and gardens. Celebrate 102 years of Joyce’s Ulysses with a glass in hand, and live music from Ireland’s most exciting musicians and rappers, whose adventure with language echoes Joyce’s own fearlessness with words. A guaranteed highlight of the summer!

Includes a welcome drink on arrival. Presented in partnership with the Dublin Liberties Distillery. Under 18s must be accompanied by an adult.

Offica has redefined what it means to be an Irish rapper, breaking records with a run of classic singles and game-changing freestyles. He has carved a niche for himself by seamlessly incorporating Irish and Yoruba slang into his lyrics, providing a unique window into his culture and identity. Watch video

Celine is a talented musician known for her unique style and storytelling in true rap. She has gained a strong following for her emotional lyrics and captivating performances. Watch video

Emmy Shigeta is a Japanese DJ whose love for music developed while working in a record store in Tokyo. Now based in Dublin, she loves to play ambient (環境音楽), city pop, and the latest underground J-pop in various venues and on her monthly Dublin Digital Radio show.

Tickets are €24.

Poems Ago

The James Joyce Centre is proud to present a lunchtime performance by Poems Ago. Poems Ago, the Irish-Dutch musical duo Juliana Hahn and Remco Jacobs, compose and perform music to Irish poetry and play original songs. In this concert, they will perform guitar and violin music set to James Joyce’s Chamber Music (1906) as well as poetry by W.B. Yeats, Oscar Wilde, and contemporary Irish poets. The concert conincides with Yeats’ birthday.

More information about Poems Ago can be found on their website

Tickets are €12.

Bloomsday at Davy Byrnes

“He entered Davy Byrnes. Moral pub. He doesn’t chat. Stands a drink now and then. But in a leap year once in four. Cashed a cheque for me once.” Ulysses

Davy Byrnes pub opened its doors in 1889. Thirty-one years later it was thrust in to international fame with the publication of James Joyce’s Ulysses when Leopold Bloom visits for a glass of burgundy and a gorgonzola cheese sandwich in the ‘Lestrygonians’ episode. Bloom stands and chats with the owner, Davy Byrne, about life and his appetite before continuing on his odyssey. Ever since Bloomsday has been celebrated, Davy Byrnes has been at its heart.

This year, the iconic pub will be hosting an afternoon of festivities to mark the day with music, performances, and readings. Bring Ulysses to life (and order a gorgonzola or two) in this historic city centre environment!

The event is free. No booking required.

Further information:

Bloomsday in Ringsend

The Ringsend & District Historical Society is proud to present Bloomsday in Ringsend on 15-16 June 2024. We have several events throughout Ringsend that are free and open to the public. Ringsend is where James Joyce and Nora Barnacle had their first date on June 16th, 1904 — the date on which Ulysses is set. What better way to celebrate Bloomsday than to spend it where it all began!


Day One: Saturday, June 15th  

11 am – Ringsend Library (45mins) 

Lecture by the DCC Historian in Residence Cormac Moore 

‘The Life of Constance Markievicz’ 


12 noon (45mins) 

Walking Tour with Eddie Bohan 

‘In The Footsteps of Joyce 1904’ 

Departs & Ends Ringsend Library 


1.30 pm (45mins) 

Bus Tour courtesy of the Big Bus Open Top 

Tour takes in Sandymount Strand, The Green and Irishtown.  


3 pm – Ringsend Library 

Outdoor Ballad /Folk Session 


Day Two: Sunday, June 16th  

10.30 am – Horse & Carriage Parade to Ringsend Park, Departing Thorncastle Street 

Tour Route : Irishtown Road, Pembroke Street, Strasburg Terrace with a Ulysess performance, Ringsend Park, return via Caroline Row, Fitzwilliam Street to the RICC Centre 

 The event will feature the unveiling of a plaque and seat dedicated to James Joyce and Nora Barnacle commemorating their first date with thanks to Dublin City Council.


12.30 pm – RICC Centre 

The Bloomsday Brunch 

Live Music, Food & Period Dress 

Open to All 


4 pm – CYMS Hall, Ringsend 

The Writers Adventure – ‘Remembering Ringsend’ 

Short Story & Poetry Prize Presentation.  

Books Tokens (€200, €100 & €75) Awarded courtesy of Savvi, Irishtown 

Music & End of the Festival


Joyce’s Dubliners Interpreted in Song by Hibsen

The James Joyce Centre is delighted to invite you to a unique musical interpretation of James Joyce’s Dubliners. Irish folk ensemble Hibsen will pay homage to Joyce with performances of their critically acclaimed album “The Stern Task of Living.” The album is a collection of 15 songs, one for each short story in Dubliners. Through their original music and lyrics, Hibsen brings the stories to life.

For lovers of Joyce, these concerts provide a unique perspective on Dubliners. For those not familiar with the stories, the performances provide an ideal opportunity to get to know them in an intimate surrounding.

“The arrangements . . . and lyrics come from the pen of people who have spent a lot of time in Joyce’s world.” John Meagher, Irish Independent

“One might almost sense the spirit of Joyce himself strolling through these tracks. Better still, you don’t have to know the stories to savour this as a musical experience in its own right.” Jackie Hayden, Hot Press Magazine

Hibsen are a contemporary folk music ensemble formed by Irish artists Jim Murphy and Gráinne Hunt. They released their debut album “The Stern Task of Living” on 26 May 2023. The album was inspired by the book of short stories Dubliners by James Joyce and it comprises 15 songs, one for each short story. It was launched at Bloomsday Festival 2023 and it has received critical acclaim. Some of the songs from the album received extensive national and regional radio play with one of the songs (Eveline) reaching number 2 on the RTE Radio 1 Airplay Chart. “The Stern Task of Living” was also selected as a featured album on RTE Lyric FM and on BBC Radio Ulster.

Tickets are €20.

Strings in the Earth and Air: The Musical World of James Joyce

in association with the
James Joyce Centre
brings you

‘Strings in the earth and air…’


The Musical World of James Joyce


Nicole Rourke (actor-writer)
Benjamin Dwyer (guitarist-composer)

Bloomsday 16 June 2024, 8.00pm

Join us in a celebration of Joyce’s fascination with music. With excerpts from the early poetry collection, Chamber Music, through the melancholic stories of Dubliners, to the ornate worlds of Ulysses and Finnegans Wake, Rourke & Dwyer offer a captivating programme of Joyce’s musical obsessions.

The show includes excerpts of ‘raw sensuality’ from Nuala O’Connor’s celebrated book Nora: A Love Story of Nora Barnacle and James Joyce; and it features the premiere of a new text by Nicole Rourke exploring the sensual worlds of Nora, Molly and Joyce.

Following the show, Director of the James Joyce Centre, Darina Gallagher, will host a Q&A with Nicole and Benjamin on the role of music in Joyce’s life and writing, and their creation of the programme. Wine will be served.

Tickets are €20.

Stories and Songs Of Dublin’s Writers: Wilde, Behan, O’Casey, Joyce

“I took the sounds of my city Dublin, its bar talk, its street noise and turned it into language.” James Joyce

Stories and Songs Of Dublin’s Writers: Wilde, Behan, O Casey, Joyce by Gary Brown is a one hour show of laughs, songs, culture and craic. Dublin is famous for its writers and its contribution to global literature. The show presents the history of some of its writers, quotes and songs from them. It deals with their lives in Dublin and abroad. Hear about the lives and work of Brendan Behan, James Joyce, Sean O’Casey, Oscar Wilde and many others. The show stars comedian and actor Gary Cooke.

Showtimes are June 12th, 13th, and 14th at 3-4pm.* Tickets are €20.

*The show runs June, July and August.


Ulysses aWake

‘All the Ghosts of Ulysses’ is the original music at the heart of this play. Joyce’s characters are set free at the Tower to share their stories in the guise of the Idrone Players’ 18 actors, singers, dancers, and live musicians.

Leopold Bloom’s marriage to Molly is tragically threatened but Ulysses aWake’s opening song, ‘Send out your light and your truth’ (Cuir thuat amach do sholas is do fhírinne), signals that Bloom will be the author of his story. This is his day.

Tickets are free but booking is essential. There will be both seating and standing places available.

Druidy Druids

Join us at the James Joyce Tower for a wonderful evening of enchanting music. The Druidy Druids perform an array of songs and music referred to in Joyce’s works, including his own “Bid Adieu,” the only piece in Chamber Music for which he wrote both the words and the melody. Visit their website at

Tickets are €5. The Druidy Druids will repeat their performance free of charge on June 16th at 12:30pm.

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