The Bloomsday Festival activities kicked off at the James Joyce Tower & Museum yesterday with a selection of songs and stories delivered by Noel O’Grady (five time winner of Oireachtas na Gaeilge for traditional singing).
Noel, who has been described in the press as ‘the voice of James Joyce’ , performed to a delighted audience in a packed round room giving us renditions of songs associated with James Joyce and his works.
It was a real treat to hear the stories behind the songs that Noel chose and then to listen to his wonderful tenor voice filling the tower with beautiful music.
What better venue could there be in which to celebrate music associated with the great writer? After all, this is the place he chose as the starting point for his masterpiece, ‘Ulysses’.
Our Martello Tower was, for a while, transported back to the days of Gogarty when there was always Music at the Tower and it was a place of revelry and storytelling.
I can’t be sure but I could have sworn that, at one stage in Noel’s performance, I heard a panther growl as Oliver, Samuel and James joined in the chorus.
Thank you, Noel for lending us your voice.