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Chestertown Bloomsday!

June 16, 2015

Schedule of events, Chestertown Bloomsday, Tuesday, June 16, 2015:

 9:00 to 10:30 a.m., Irish Breakfast and Chapter One reading. The Kitchen at the Imperial Hotel, 208 High Street, serves an Irish breakfast with local talents Jim Landskroener, Mark Hampton and others reading from the first chapter of Ulysses, “Telemachus.” “Come watch our booming Buck Mulligan lather and shave as he starts his day,” says Castro.  Ticketed event, $20 per person plus a cash Bloody Mary bar. Space limited; to reserve, call The Kitchen at the Imperial at 410-778-5000.

10:45 to 11:15 a.m., Ulysses lecture by Joyce expert Elizabeth O’Connor, assistant professor of English at Washington College. O’Connor will explain the enduring appeal and significance of the novel.  Garfield Center for the Arts, 210 High Street.  Free.

11:15 a.m. to Noon, Readings from Chapter Four, “Calypso.” Garfield Center for the Arts. Free.

Noon to 12:30 p.m., Readings crawl up High Street, featuring Chapter 10,  “Wandering Rocks,” part one. Free.

12:30 to 2:00 p.m., JR’s Pub, 337 High Street, Irish music by the Mainstay’s Tom McHugh.Readings from Chapter 11, “The Sirens.” Admission free. Lunch available by individual order.

2:15 to 2:45 p.m., Chapter 10 “Wandering Rocks” readings crawl, part two, continues to The Bookplate, 112 S. Cross Street. Free.

3:00 to 4:00 p.m., The Bookplate, 112 S. Cross Street, a variety of readings. Free.

5:30 to 6:45 p.m., Lawyer’s Row, off High Street (adjacent to the Garfield Center), Fish ‘n Chips dinner catered by the Fish Whistle restaurant (dinners individually priced), cold beer, music, casual readings.

7:00 to 8:00 p.m., outside the former Imperial Hotel, 208 High Street, performance of Chapter 18, “Penelope.”  Michele Volansky, chair of the Department of Theater and Dance at Washington College, will perform Molly Bloom’s famous soliloquy from a bed installed in the street in front of the former hotel building. Free.

Bloomsday in Chestertown is made possible with support of the Kent County Arts Council, and the Garfield Center for the Performing Arts. For more information, visit the Chestertown Bloomsday Facebook page, and the Garfield Center web site at www.garfieldcenter.org. 


Irish writer James Joyce’s novel Ulysses unfolds over a single day in Dublin on June 16, 1904. Bloomsday – June 16, the annual celebration of the novel and Joyce – is named for the novel’s protagonist, Leopold Bloom, who wends his way through the Dublin’s urban landscape, the odyssey of a modern-day Ulysses. Around the world Bloomsday celebrations feature readings, meals, dramatizations, and, especially in Dublin the hoisting a few Guinnesses.

If you’re new to the novel, don’t worry; Chestertown Bloomsday is a fun and easy way to work your way through Ulysses.

The day starts at 9:00 a.m. with a proper Irish breakfast buffet at The Kitchen in the Imperial Hotel (mutton kidney, anyone?) with readings from chapter one, Telemachus. Come watch our booming Buck Mulligan lather and shave as he starts his day. At 11:00 a.m., The Garfield Center for the Arts hosts a lecture on the book (why was it banned?) followed by a dramatized reading of chapter four, Calypso. At lunchtime readings along High Street from chapter ten, The Wandering Rocks, lead to Lemon Leaf Cafe’s back room. It’s just the spot for a box lunch and an afternoon pint. Music by Mainstay’s Tom McHugh and readings from the Siren’s chapter (where Bloom was tempted by barmaids) will leave everyone feeling thoroughly immersed. Back outside, chapter ten continues with street recitations to The Bookplate, for a cool afternoon interlude with readings in the back room. At 5:00 head to Lawyer’s Row for fish ‘n chips and a fortifying beverage. And at dusk, the day concludes with Michelle Volansky, Washington College Drama Department chair, reading from the final chapter, Penelope (Molly’s soliloquy) outside the Imperial Hotel. As in the book, Bloom’s wife Molly is in bed following an afternoon with her lover, so our Molly/Michelle will be in her bed, on High Street, musing on love, love and more love. Don’t miss this very special event!

Visit the Chestertown Bloomsday Facebook page for more info!

What is Bloomsday?

Bloomsday is a commemoration and celebration of the life of Irish writer James Joyce during which the events of his novel Ulysses (which is set on 16 June 1904) are relived. It is observed annually on 16 June in Dublin and elsewhere. Joyce chose the date as it was the date of his first outing with his wife-to-be, Nora Barnacle; they walked to the Dublin suburb of Ringsend. The name is derived from Leopold Bloom, the protagonist of Ulysses. (excerpt from Wikipedia – read more…)



June 16, 2015
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