Blooms of Dublin

Scope and Content

Blooms of Dublin is a musical play by Burgess, based on James Joyce's Ulysses. It was first broadcast on BBC radio and Radio Telefis Eireann in February 1982 to celebrate the hundredth birthday of James Joyce, and it was published for the first time in 1986.

Burgess had begun developing the work as early as the mid 1960s and, according to him, a draft of the libretto and score had been completed as early as 1971. The draft score was subsequently converted by Burgess into a complete orchestral work in preparation for the radio broadcast.

With the help of his wife, Liana, and Mario Maranzana, Burgess also worked on creating an Italian translation of I Blum di Dublino / Il Bloom di Dublino (as he called it). The Teatro Comunale in Trieste expressed interest in producing the operetta, which they intended to call Ulyssea (or Ulissea), and a good deal of progress was made in translating the vocal score. In 1993, the Trieste production was cancelled before work on it had been completed.

The text of some songs from Blooms of Dublin also appears in two of Burgess's novels, Earthly Powers (1980) and The End of World News (1982).

This series contains draft libretto, lyrics and score for the English and Italian adaptations of Blooms of Dublin, with some accompanying correspondence. It contains a full vocal and orchestral score in English

Source: "Blooms of Dublin: A musical play based on James Joyce's Ulysses. With an introduction by the author" by Anthony Burgess (Hutchinson, 1986) and "A Clockwork Counterpoint: the Music and Literature of Anthony Burgess" by Paul Phillips (Manchester University Press, 2010)

Conditions Governing Access

Access to fragile records is granted in consultation with the Archivist (as indicated on a file-by-file, or item-by-item, basis).

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

The majority of records within this series are in a good condition, with the exception of one item.