“To learn one must be humble. But life is the great teacher.”
James Joyce, Ulysses
The truth is, I’ve never seen Dublin. Not Ireland anyway. I’ve been to Dublin, Virginia loads of times. I don’t think they’re all that similar.
Today is Bloomsday.
Taken from the novel Ulysses by writer James Joyce, Bloomsday recognizes the day the novel’s protagonist, Leopold Bloom takes his walk, his very long walk, through the streets of Dublin.
That day was June 16 and it’s celebrated in Dublin, and around the world.
Just before the beginning of our forty-seven year lockdown, I played the character Robert in Bloomsday by Steven Dietz at Chamberlayne Actors Theatre.
The play is a time-travel love story that takes Robert back to Dublin where he met Cait some thirty-five years ago. Through the magic of theatre Robert and Cait retrace their steps through Dublin and encounter their younger selves. It’s a beautiful play and I am grateful that I had the chance to be a part of it.
We won’t talk about all the Guinness.
It was research. Seriously.
That was February of 2020 and I immediately began working on my next production. I was to direct Sam Shepard’s True West in Williamsburg. I had an amazing cast and it was set to be a powerful show. But it was not to be. We shut down just weeks before opening.
As the pandemic was settling down and life started coming back to some sort of normal, I took a break from theater. Of course that was also in the midst of Last Summer’s Great Unpleasantness™. I’ve written about that on more than one occasion.
I’ve come to realize that I can’t go back to my former level of involvement in theater, but the itch, so to speak is there. I’m cautiously looking at opportunities to direct or perform.
And, as always, if you’re producing any of my Bucket List shows, hit me up.
Chances are, I’ll never get to the real Dublin. I’ve got neither the time nor the resources to do all the traveling I’d like to do before that one big trip home. You know what I mean.
And, that’s okay.
Today, I’m grateful for the chance I had to play in the faux Dublin of Bloomsday.
Still, if you’d like to buy me a Guinness, hit the tip jar on the way out.
BORN ON THIS DAY
1723 – Adam Smith, Scottish philosopher and economist (d. 1790)
1890 – Stan Laurel, English actor and comedian (d. 1965)
1917 – Katharine Graham, American publisher (d. 2001)
1937 – Erich Segal, American author and screenwriter (d. 2010)
1955 – Laurie Metcalf, American actress
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Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.