Past Events

2020 Festival

Online Exhibition:
Originally schedule to display live in Montreal, we were thrilled this selection of irreverent but loving caricatures of James Joyce and his circle by Montreal-born artist and illustrator Craig Morriss were available online. The exhibition includes textual commentary, and has been updated regularly with new content. To access the exhibition, go to and click on the menu icon in the upper right corner — click on Bloomsday Montreal 2020 Exhibition.


Opening Ceremony: Friday, June 12, 2:00-3:30 pm. Michael Kenneally, Chair of Concordia’s School of Irish Studies, joined the Bloomsday organizers for an introduction to the festival, its roots, and the lasting power of Joyce. Rewatch the event here! 


A Bloomsday Concert: Saturday, June 13, 2:00-4:00 pm. Hosted by Dennis Trudeau and featuring singers, writers, storytellers, and musicians, we enjoyed a tribute to Joyce in song, music, and words. Rewatch the event here, and download the event program here!

Virtual Walking Tour: Sunday, June 14, 10:00-11:30 am. A Bloomsday tradition in the days of pandemic! Donovan King led us on a virtual walking tour. We watched his pre-recorded journey through the history of Irish Montreal, including sites that recorded the impact of past pandemics on our city. Donovan joined us live via Zoom for questions and answers. Rewatch the event here!

The Sunset Gals: Sunday, June 14, 2:00-3:30 pm. Prolific playwright and local treasure Colleen Curran read from her new play, The Sunset Gals. This event was sponsored by The Playwrights Guild of Canada. Rewatch the event here!

Academic Panel: Monday, June 15 , 10:00 am – 1:00 pm, with breaks. For an immersive discussion of Joyce’s work, we were joined by John McCourt, Marcello Zabaloy, and members of the Concordia community. Rewatch the event here!

  • John McCourt is Professor of English literature at the University of Macerata. His most recent book is Writing the Frontier. Anthony Trollope between Britain and Ireland (Oxford University Press, 2015). He is also the author of The Years of Bloom: Joyce in Trieste 1904-1920 (Lilliput Press and the University of Wisconsin Press).  John has edited many volumes including Roll Away the Reel WorldJames Joyce and Cinema (Cork University Press), and James Joyce in Context (Cambridge University Press). He is currently working on a study of the reception of Joyce’s Ulysses in Ireland as the centenary of its publication approaches. John is co-director of the Trieste Joyce School.

  • Marcelo Zabaloy is the Spanish translator of Ulysses and Finnegan’s Wake. He was born in Bahía Blanca, Argentina on the 10th of September 1956, and has lived in the same city since then, with his wife of over 40 years, Marcela. They have two daughters aged 41 and 40 and four sons aged  39, 38, 37 and 36. The remarkable story of how this self-confessed, independent scholar and former IT professional came to Joyce and to develop these acclaimed translations will make for a fascinating presentation.

  • Peter Stockland is Senior Writer with Cardus, and Editor and publisher of Convivium, “an online space that brings together citizens of differing convictions and religious confessions to contend for the role of faith in our common life.  Over the last eight years Convivium has fostered rigorous conversation, shared profound stories of faith, and explored some of the most difficult questions of our time.”  Peter was formerly editor-in-chief at the Montreal Gazette.  Peter is also a student at Concordia’s School of Irish Studies.  Last year, Peter spoke on “Ulysses by Ear” about learning “Ulysses” not by reading but by listening.  
  • Kayla Fanning is a student in the School of Irish Studies at Concordia University, with a double major in English Literature and Irish Studies.  She is an unrepentant Joyce enthusiast.  In this year’s panel, in keeping with the theme of “Joyce and Landscape”, Kayla will be exploring Episode Seven in Ulysses, “Aeolus” and the contours of the lungs, the breath and the wind.

Bloomsday Readings. Tuesday, June 16, in two sessions: 

11:00 am – 1:00 pm. The sine qua non of every Bloomsday, we gathered for readings from throughout Ulysses.

2:00 – 4:00 pm: We gathered for deeper dive into Episode 18, Penelope, from Ulysses, exploring Molly Bloom through words and song.

Rewatch the events here!

Our annual celebration of James Joyce’s birthday was February 2, 2020 at the Westmount Library! We enjoyed readings, storytelling, drawings, cake, cookies, and conversation!

2019 Festival



Lecture by Professor Pól Ó Dochartaigh, National University of Ireland, Galway, with exhibition “Jews in Irish Literature” in the Lobby of the Jewish Public Library from May 30 – June 17th. .



Musicians: Gearóid Ó hAllmhuráin – concertina and pipes, Kate Bevan-Baker – violin and vocals, Martine Billette – keyboard. 



An inside look at the great novel with tips on how to get beyond Episode 1!.



With local poet Larissa Andrusyshyn, Storyteller J. D. Hickey and musicians Patrick Hutchinson and Belfast Andi.



Presentations in French and English given by Concordia students and Joyce scholars.



Donovan King led the tour. 

SATURDAY, JUNE 15, 7:30-9:00 PM, $15, TICKETS


Very seldom seen in Montreal! Play by John Millington Synge, music by Ralph Vaughn Williams and produced by Johanne Patry. Introduction by John Donahue.



Dramatization of selections from “Ulysses”. Local actors and readers perform in scenes both sublime and ridiculous.



After listening to the dramatic readings from Ulysses (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.) stay with us for afternoon tea and goodies. Then hear Actress Kathleen Fee read and Geraldina Mendez sing songs from Molly Bloom‘s soliloquy that ends the great novel.

2018 Festival

Tuesday June 12

2018 Bloomsday Festival Opener: “Come to the Cabaret”

Bloomsday Montreal’s 2018 Festival Opener, “Come to the Cabaret.” Join us for an evening of tapas, drinks, musicians and sing alongs. Performing musicians include Beverly McGuire (soprano), Johanne Patry (alto), Gary Iannacone (tenor), Anna Fuerstenberg (actress/comedienne) and Lauretta Altman (pianist). Chez Anas, 552 de l’Eglise, Verdun, QC H4G 2M7

Wednesday June 13

Academic Panel: “Ulysses” and the Irish

Talks in English & in French organized by Concordia’s School of Irish Studies – Michael Kenneally. Faculty, students and experts discuss Joyce and Irish literature. Concordia University, McEntee Reading Room – 10th floor, Henry F. Hall Building, 1455 De Maisonneuve Blvd W, Montréal, QC H3G 1M8

Godot at the Coconut Grove

Bloomsday proudly presents an Equity Showcase production of GODOT AT THE COCONUT GROVE a new comedy by Colleen Curran. Waiting for Godot by James Joyce’s pal Samuel Beckett made its American premiere in January 1956 at the Coconut Grove Playhouse in Miami, Florida. One of the stars of this legendary fiasco advertised as “the laugh sensation on two continents” was Bert Lahr famous for playing The Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz. Corey Castle directs Gordon Masten as Lahr, Jude Benny as Millie Lahr, Colleen Curran and Jasmine Winter as workers Roz and Eve of the Coconut Grove and Castelina Massuda as Mary Bettino a very perplexed member of the opening night audience.
​This is “A slice of American theatre history mixed with many, many laughs!” Loyola Chapel, Concordia University, 7141 Sherbrooke St W, Montreal, QC H4B 1R6

Thursday June 14

The Irish in Canada

“The Irish in Canada: Before, During and After the Famine” co-sponsored by the Quebec Anglophone Heritage Network (QAHN). Sam Allison, historian, tells the remarkable story of men and women who made Quebec and Canada. Atwater Library, 1200 Atwater Ave, Westmount, QC H3Z 1X4

The Wake

“The Wake”…a storytelling, poetry and musical event. J. D. Hickey leads a cast of Montreal ‘s finest performers. McKibbin’s Irish Pub, 1426 Bishop St, Montreal, QC H3G 2E6

Friday June 15

Ghost Walk

Irish stories in the shadowy corners of the City. J. D. Hickey, actor & storyteller, reveals hidden histories. Meeting point: Rockaberry Griffintown, 1380 Notre-Dame St W, Montreal, QC H3C 1K8

Saturday June 16

Ulysses Alive

“Ulysses Alive:” dramatic Readings of passages from “Ulysses.” Local actors perform in scenes both sublime and ridiculous. Westmount Library, 4574 Sherbrooke St W, Westmount, QC H3Z 1G1

Molly Bloom Soliloquy & Irish Literature/Culture

Join us for an afternoon of Irish literature readings, tea and goodies.  Actress Kathleen Fee is Molly Bloom in a dramatic reading from Ulysses. Exhibits by the Quebec Anglophone Heritage Network (QAHN) and other Irish groups. Gallery at Victoria Hall, Victoria Hall Community Centre, 4626 Sherbrooke Street W, Westmount, QC H3Z 1G1

2017 Festival

Friday June 9

Lecture: “A Sounding of Finnegans Wake”

Lecture: “A Sounding of Finnegans Wake” by Malcolm Goldstein, musician and composer. James Joyce’s “Wake” was an essential inspiration source for John Cage who created “Roaratorio”. The music is a vast soundscape collage of recordings of places and sound referred to in the “Wake”. We will discuss Cage’s music and  listen to “Roaratorio.” NOTE: Pre-­Event at MCLL on Friday, June 9th at 1 p.m. at the McGill School for Continuing Studies – 688 Sherbrooke St. in Room 1041. $10

Saturday June 10

Walking Tour

Walking Tour, The History of the Irish in Montreal. Walk, talk, and learn about history, memory, class, and community in this fascinating walking tour of Irish Montreal. Starts at the Old Dublin Pub, 636 Cathcart Street. 10 am to 12 pm. $15.

Festival Opener – Reception and Registration

Festival Opener, get a first-hand look at all the Festival Bloomsday Montréal events scheduled between June 10 and Bloomsday, June 16. Special guest speakers, finger food, and live music by The Bombadils. Palco Bar, 4019 Wellington, Verdun. Metro station de l’Église. 4 pm to 7 pm. Free!

Sunday June 11

Bloomsday Brunch

Irish Brunch, hats off to Chef Peter Saunders! Our Bloomsday supporter and talented connoisseur of fine food organizes the brunch, now a popular annual event. Evoo Restaurant, 3426 Notre-Dame. 9 am to 11 am. Call for reservations: 514-846-3886. The real Irish thing!

Molly Bloom Soliloquy and Pub Quiz

Molly Bloom Soliloquy & Pub Quiz, enjoy a pint, tasty pub supper, and an evening of rollicking Joycean entertainment. Actress Kathleen Fee reads from the “Penelope” passage that closes Ulysses. Stay in your seat. We wrap the evening with a pub quiz of all things Irish, led by Charlie O’Keefe. Irish Embassy Pub 1234 Bishop Street. 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm, $10.

Monday June 12

Academic Panels

Featuring Denis Sampson’s book, The Found Voice, as well as student academic panels. Presentations in French and English. Concordia University, Hall building, 10th floor, 1455 Boulevard de Maisonneuve West. 11 am to 3 pm. Free

Bloomsday Community Cultural Exhibit

Irish Community Cultural Exhibit, with live music by The Bombadils. McKibbin’s Irish Pub, 1426 Bishop, 3rd floor. 5 pm to 9 pm. Free!

Tuesday June 13

Film Night

Screening of Shem the Penman Sings Again, directed by Pádraig Trehy. With additional short films. De Sève Cinéma, 1400 Boulevard de Maisonneuve West. 7 pm to 9 pm, $10.

An Irish Story

A night of storytelling and poetry. Readings with special guest hosts and artists as well as an open mic portion to bring out your inner Irish poet! Kafein café-bar, 1429 Bishop Street. 9 pm to 12 am. Free!

Wednesday June 14

“Introducing Mr. Joyce’s Ulysses”

A talk by Dr. Michael Kenneally, Principal of Concordia’s Canadian School of Irish studies. Followed by a reception with honoured guest, the newly appointed Irish Ambassador to Canada, Jim Kelly. Jewish Public Library, 5151 Cote Ste. Catherine Road. 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm, $15.

Community Pub Quiz

Hosted by the Montreal Shamrocks. Special prize for pub quiz team winners! Hurley’s Irish Pub, 1225 Crescent Street. 8 pm to 12 am, $10.

Thursday June 15

Growing Up Irish

Master storytellers Jan Gregory and Margaret Nicolai and actor Clive Brewer join pianist Natalia Davydova and soprano Kathleen McAuliffe for a lunch hour of story and music. Atwater Library, 1200 Atwater Avenue, Westmount. 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm. Free!

Concert Night

Music by The Bluegrazzers (Celtic/folk/bluegrass). Hurley’s Irish Pub, 1225 Crescent Street. Doors open at 8 pm, show starts at 8:30 pm. Free!

Friday June 16

Festival Highlight: Bloomsday Readings

Bloomsday Readings from Ulysses with the theme of “Voices.” If you are new to the festival, June 16 is Bloomsday and Montreal joins hundreds of cities around the world to mark this special anniversary of the day on which Ulysses is set. Do not miss these dramatic readings from Ulysses by local media personalities and actors. Insight and context comes along with Joycean experts, Maggie Benfield and Denis Sampson, who introduce each reading. Westmount Public Library, 4574 Sherbrooke Street West. 11 am to 3 pm. Bring your lunch. Free!

Closing Event: Come Into the Parlour

Bloomsday Tea, with a repeat performance of Growing Up Irish (see events of June 15). Westmount Public Library, 4574 Sherbrooke Street West. 3:30 pm to 5 pm. Free!

2016 Festival

Bloomsday Celebrations Underway In Montréal CBC News Montreal, article by Sabrina Marandola

Bloomsday: a Joycean Celebration Senior Times, article by Kristine Berey

Bloomsday Montréal: A Growing Success CBC Radio International, article and audio by Carmel Kilkenny

Byron’s Bloomsday Montréal Quickie List Westmount Magazine, article by Byron Toben

Kathleen Fee Talks About Ulysses and Bloomsday Montréal video, Breakfast Television (BT)

Interview: Dave and Judith Schurman Montréal Rampage, article by T.A. Wellington

Interview: Abby Bender, Celebrating a Classic of Irish Literature The Suburban, article by Joel Goldenberg

What Connects James Joyce, Gastronomy, and Happy Days? Concordia University News, article by Elizabeth Faure

2012-2015 Festivals

Visual History of the Festival Bloomsday Montréal

Skip through the highlights of Bloomsday Montréal beginning with our inaugural year – 2012.
Presentation: Bloomsday Montréal Festival — 2012 to 2015

CBC Interview, 2012

Listen to Judith Schurman, one of the founders of Bloomsday Montréal, interviewed in 2012, by Sonali Karnick of CBC’s All in a Weekend.

Ulysses – Critique & Readings

Learn more and listen to parts of Ulysses. Special interviews with Christopher Joyce, James Joyce’s grand nephew, and a scholarly critique by Michael Kenneally,  Principal of the School of Irish Studies at Concordia University. Christopher Joyce also talks about the beginnings of the Bloomsday Montréal Festival.

Michael Kenneally & Christopher Joyce Part 1 I Part 2

Watch Ulysses Come to Life

Watch this exciting reading of Ulysses, held at Atwater Library, during the 2013 Bloomsday Montréal Festival.
Ulysses Reading

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