On this day…23 September

On 23 September 1930 Joyce wrote to George Antheil about Cain. Earlier in September, Joyce had suggested to composer George Antheil that he write an opera based on Byron’s play Cain. On 23 September Joyce wrote in more detail about how he imagined the opera might work, but in the end the project came to […]

On this day…19 June

On 19 June 1926 Joyce attended the premiere of Antheil’s Ballet Mécanique. George Antheil (1900-1959) had come to Paris in 1923 determined to establish a reputation as the ‘bad boy of music.’ Sylvia Beach introduced him to Joyce and Antheil planned an opera based on the ‘Cyclops’ episode of Ulysses. Born in Trenton, New Jersey, […]

On this day…8 April

On 8 April 1848 Italian opera composer Gaetano Donizetti died. Donizetti (1797-1848) was one of the great composers of bel canto opera. Among his best-known works are L’Elisir d’amore (1832), Lucia di Lammermoor (1835), and Lucrezia Borgia (1833), all of which are referred to in Joyce’s works. Born in Bergamo, Donizetti came to international attention […]

On this day…4 April

On 4 April 1900 Queen Victoria started her visit to Dublin. Queen Victoria had arrived in Kingstown (Dún Laoghaire) harbour on the afternoon of 3 April, but did not disembark until the following day, when she went by carriage to Dublin. The Lord Mayor, Thomas Pile, presented her with the civic sword and the keys […]

On this day…9 November

By 9 November 1919 Joyce had fixed on the style for ‘Nausicaa.’ Having completed ‘Cyclops’ before leaving Zurich, Joyce started into the next episode of Ulysses, ‘Nausicaa,’ on his return to post-war Trieste, despite the unpleasant conditions in which he found himself living. Unable to find a flat in overcrowded post-war Trieste, Joyce and his […]