James Joyce: 134th Birthday


 Joyce was born February 2, 1882 in Dublin, Ireland and as author of Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Ulysses, and Finnegans Wake, proved himself one of the greatest writers in literary history.

“Joyce is always in my mind, I carry him everywhere with me.” – Salman Rushdie

“To call this man angry is too temperate a word, he was volcanic.” – Edna O’Brien

Joyce has a most goddamn wonderful book.” – Jack Kerouac

Mistakes are the portals of discovery.” – James Joyce


SAVE THE DATES:      JUNE 12-16, 2016 


June 12 – Sunday:

  • Irish Montreal Walking Tours in English and French: 10 – 12 noon: Route TBA
  • Bloomsday Brunch at EVOO Restaurant from 11 – 3 p.m.
  • Penelope Reading with Kathleen Fee, Pub Quiz and Meal at Irish Embassy Pub starting at 5:30 p.m.

June 13 – Monday:

  • Academic Sessions at Concordia School of Canadian Irish Studies: 10 – 3 p.m.
  • Film Night with an introduction and a Q and A to follow  –  7:30 – 9:30 p.m.

June 14 – Tuesday:

  • Storytelling & Song at Atwater Library: 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
  • Reading Ulysses with Sylvie Hill:  A practical session on how to approach the reading of Ulysses – for beginners or those who’ve given up in the past.  At the McGill Community for Lifelong Learning 7:30 – 9:30 p.m.

June 15 – Wednesday:

  • Lecture on Beckett/Joyce by André Furlani at Concordia:  11:00 – 12:30 p.m.
  • Finnegans Wake: Open Group Reading and discussion at Westmount Library from 7 to 9 p.m.

June 16 – Thursday: BLOOMSDAY!

  • Readings from Ulysses at Westmount Library  11 – 3  p.m.
  • Bloomsday Closing Lecture Abby Bender of NYU will talk about her new book: Israelites in Erin: Exodus, Revolution, and the Irish Revival at the Jewish Public Library 7:30 – 9 p.m.
  • Bloomsday 2016 Closing Reception at the Jewish Public Library 9 -10 p.m.

In addition: There will be a Pub of the Day Monday to Thursday.

* Note: this is the preliminary schedule and is subject to change





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Donate to Festival Bloomsday Montréal

We are currently organizing the fifth annual Festival Bloomsday Montréal that will take place June 12-16, 2016. With readings from Ulysses, world class lectures by Joyce experts, film and storytelling events, Irish walking tours, musical, gastronomic, and Irish pub gatherings, celebrations of the close personal and literary relationship between Joyce and Samuel Beckett, and more on how Jewish themes played a major role in the composition of Ulysses, you can expect a fabulous festival. If you have not already attended one of our past festivals, we invite you to come and bring your family and friends.

We would like you to consider providing more direct support for Festival Bloomsday Montréal. As a unique, independent volunteer organization, we count on our partners and our participants for the financial support that makes our festival possible. Such support from a range of government, educational, cultural, and corporate organizations enables us to grow and maintain one of the world’s great celebrations of Irish writers and, in particular, James Joyce.  

We want to continue providing the highest quality at the lowest possible ticket prices – including a number of free events to encourage everyone to participate, especially students and those in financial need.  But to do this next year we will need the financial support of our Bloomsday community. So now, for the first time, we are asking you to donate. Bloomsday is a charitable organization and will provide you with an official tax receipt for your donation. (Registered charity number: 82504 3581 RR0001).

“Everyone’s Joyce” is our motto.  We ask you to consider a donation of any amount you can afford. You can make your gift online or by mail. Join with our growing group of friends, partners and sponsors to help us create the best ever Festival Bloomsday Montréal in 2016.

To donate via Canada Post make cheques payable to: Festival Bloomsday Montréal and mail to 133 boulevard de l’Union, St. Lambert, Quebec, J4R 2M7.

To donate on-line go to our PayPal site. Click on the “Donate” tab above. Note that you do not have to have a PayPal account and can use most credit cards.
Thank you for your support!

Dave Schurman for Festival Bloomsday Montréal

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Happy Celtic New Years Folks

The night we call “Halloween” in English is Oíche Shamhnaliterally “Samhain Eve”. It is pronounced SAH-win and means summers end.

“The festival of Samhain began the winter half of the year. It was believed that the Cailleach (a Celtic old woman or “hag”), hit the ground with her hammer, making it iron hard until Imbolc (also called Saint Brgid’s Day). On Samhain night, the gates of the other world were open, allowing communication with the ancestors. The ancestors were respected as the repositories of lore and wisdom: many Celtic tales speak of the dead returning to speak to their descendants in order to impart knowledge or to restore memory of ancient customs and stories. The feasts of Samhain and Beltane were considered to be outside the boundaries of normal activities when supernatural events take place: the barriers between humans, ancestors, gods and faeries are overthrown, and they can visit each others’ realms. The modern festival of Halloween, All Saints Eve, derives from the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain.”

[Adapted from The Celtic Book of Days by Caitlín Matthews]

Therefore: October 31, the eve of Samhain, is the Celtic New Year’s Eve.

To all those celebrating:

Happy new year!

Oíche shamna shona daoibh go léir!

For more information go to:



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DONATE to Festival Bloomsday Montréal

To all our supporters and lovers of Joyce and Irish literature and culture we call on you to help us bring you great new programming for June 2016.  This will be our 5th Festival and is now the largest in Canada. Plans are well underway for an exciting series of lectures, academic workshops, music, film and other events.  This year we plan to have major events running from June 12 – 16.

Bringing all of this great stuff to you costs money and so we are calling on you for some financial support.

Note that we have streamlined and updated our web blog.  To donate just click on the “Donate” tab  and follow the instructions. Note that you can use any major credit card and do not have to be a PayPal account holder. However, if you do have a PayPal account the process is even easier and faster!

We are a registered charity for tax purposes and an official receipt will be provided at the end of each year.  Our CRA Charitable number is:  82504 3581 RR0001

THANK you for supporting Festival Bloomsday Montréal.

Dave Schurman for Festival Bloomsday Montréal






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Celtic Harmonies International Festival

To all Celtic Lovers and Irish culture vultures – Attend the
Celtic Harmonies International Festival
Celebrating Nature Through Music, Dance and the Arts
October 2 – 11, 2015
Eastern Townships, Québec, Canada

Go to http://www.celticharmonies.ca/home_e.php and download their program. Sounds like a fun time for ALL.. In the Knowlton and surrounding area.
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Book Launch: I See Words, I Hear Voices BY DORA GARCIA

The book Mad Marginal Cahier # 4: I See Words, I Hear Voices, a Book by Dora García will be launched at the Westmount Library on Wednesday, September 16, on the occasion of a group reading of James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake organized by Bloomsday, a Montreal organization devoted to Joyce’s works. The event is inspired by García’s film The Joycean Society, which features a reading by the Zurich society. An excerpt of the film will be screened.

Mad Marginal Cahier # 4: I See Words, I Hear Voices, edited by Chantal Pontbriand, brings together essays by international authors who comment on different aspects of García’s research. She explores “minor” literature, “exploded” language, and the unconscious, specifically through the figures of James Joyce and Robert Walser, as
well as the notion of exile within art practices. More recently, she has become interested in people who hear voices and have extra-sensory perceptions. The Mad Marginal Charts mark her progress through a cycle of exhibitions mounted in 2014 and 2015, of which the first took place at the Fonderie Darling (Autour des crimes et des rêves/Of
Crimes and Dreams) in 2014, followed by exhibitions in Amsterdam, Hamburg, Madrid, Moss, and Buenos Aires. The final one, which bears the same title as the book, will open at The Power Plant on September 25. Pontbriand is curator of the exhibitions in Montreal and Toronto.

Westmount Library
Wednesday, September 16, 7:00 p.m

Information: Donna Lach at the Westmount Library (514) 989-5386

For more information:

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Notice that Festival Bloomsday Montréal has a new look that is clean and refreshing. It is making its appearance today here as well as on our Face Book and Twitter pages.

While it still is early, we have begun the process of planning for events for this year and especially for our 5th Festival which will be running from June 12 – 16th 2016.

Please keep in touch with us. We will be posting information and updates in the next few weeks to keep you up to date.

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