New play about James Joyce's daughter will be staged at her graveside on Bloomsday

New play about James Joyce's daughter will be staged at her graveside on Bloomsday

A NEW play centred on the life of James Joyce’s only child will be performed for the first time at her graveside next month.

Written by Richard Rose and James Vollmar, Letters to Lucia will be performed by the Triskellion Irish Theatre Company in Kingsthorpe Cemetery in Northampton on Bloomsday.

Lucia Joyce was the daughter of James Joyce and Nora Barnacle.

A professional dancer, she was diagnosed as schizophrenic in the mid-1930s and institutionalised at the Burghölzli psychiatric clinic in Zurich.

In the 1950s, she was transferred to St Andrew's Healthcare in Northampton, where she remained until her death in 1982.

“Letters to Lucia features letters as they might have been written to Lucia by those who knew her well,” the Triskellion Irish Theatre Company explains.

“These correspondents include her parents and the writer Samuel Beckett, who visited her at St Andrews, the Northampton hospital where she ended her days,” they add.

“The play will receive its debut at the cemetery where Lucia is buried, where her friends and family express thoughts and feelings they perhaps wished they could have articulated during Lucia’s lifetime, but for various reasons did not.”

From an original idea by Richard Rose, the drama was developed in collaboration with playwright James Vollmar and the Triskellion Irish Theatre Company.

It will be performed for the first time on Bloomsday, June 16, at 2.30pm at Lucia’s graveside in Kingsthorpe, Northampton.

All are welcome to attend, with the organisers adding: “Bring a chair and light picnic.”

Also buried at the cemetery are Irish writer Donall Mac Amhlaigh and Violet Gibson, the Irish-born daughter of Lord Ashbourne who is best known for her unsuccessful attempt at assassinating Italy’s fascist leader Mussolini in 1926.