The Bloomsday Story by Robert Gogan
The Bloomsday Story is available to players and theatre groups by contacting Robert Gogan or by emailing him strollingthroughulysses(at)gmail.com.
Robert’s new 1 man show Strolling Through Ulysses
is currently on tour in Ireland.
Next Performance – Bloomsday – June 16th
St Werburgh’s Church, Dublin 8
The title of this theatrical piece spells out clearly what it’s about. It’s the story of Bloomsday – June 16th 1904 – the iconic day around which James Joyce’s novel, Ulysses is based.
Narrated through the eyes of Frank Budgen, a close friend and confidant of Joyce, The Bloomsday Story takes the audience through the main ‘action’ of Ulysses, from early morning in the Sandycove Martello tower and in the Bloom household through the day to the final thoughts of Molly Bloom as she drifts off to sleep at about half past two on the following morning – a period of just over nineteen hours.
The narration is uncomplicated and down-to-earth in its form and extracts have been chosen from Ulysses which best illustrate the many diverse aspects of Joyce’s writing – the humorous, the descriptive and the complex. It’s also great fun with plenty of laughs. Joyce once said of Ulysses that there wasn’t one serious line in it and The Bloomsday Story proves this!
As Budgen says at the beginning of the play, “Today I’m going to take all of you on a journey through Ulysses on what you might call a ‘whistle-stop tour’, sprinkling it from time to time with some marvelous Joycean music”.
The play is interspersed with a collection of songs which are relevant to Joyce’s life and work, particularly Ulysses.
There are many people who would love to make an attempt at reading Ulysses, but are put off by its reputation as an ‘impossible’ book. There are equally as many others who have taken the plunge, but have abandoned it after a few pages, or a few episodes. It’s my fervent hope that The Bloomsday Story will encourage these people either to pick up Ulysses for the first time, or to take it up again and continue on from where they left off.
The Bloomsday Story in its present version is written for three performers and a singer. Ted Stapleton of Roscrea, Co Tipperary has directed it into its current form.