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NORA AND JIM an Original New Play by Nora Connolly

7 min read

Starring Lisa Dobbyn and Johnny O’Callaghan with Special Musical Guest Dermot Kiernan

Presented by The Irish Sea, in association with the Contemporary Irish Arts Center, Los Angeles (CIACLA)

Nora and Jim is an original new play by Nora Connolly, written for the Centenary Celebrations of Bloomsday in 2022. Nora and Jim charts the tempestuous relationship between James Joyce and his muse, Nora Barnacle. Bound by a fervent passion, we encounter Nora Barnacle and James Joyce as they elope, setting sail from Dublin on a cold, windy October night in 1904 to embark on this most intriguing and celebrated literary relationship. Nine Performances of Nora and Jim are being presented in two locations in June 2024, in Glendale, California at the Glendale Room (127 Artsakh Avenue, Glendale 91206) and as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival at the Broadwater Studio (1078 Lillian Way, 90038.)

Written by Nora Connolly. Directed by Ronan Wilmot. Starring Lisa Dobbyn and Johnny O’Callaghan. Special Musical Guest Dermot Kiernan. Presented by The Irish Sea, in association with the Contemporary Irish Arts Center, Los Angeles (CIACLA) with ongoing guidance and support from Kevin Cronin and Dublin Theatre Productions. Learn more at noraandjim.com

Dermot Kiernan Will Grace the Keys

Accompanying the audience’s entrance and setting the stage’s ambiance, Special Musical Guest Dermot Kiernan will grace the keys with a selection of traditional Irish pieces from the era, curated by the original pianist in Ireland. Throughout the show, Dermot will perform an opening number, a piece in the play’s heart, and a poignant closing melody during the final monologue. Dermot’s live piano playing enriches every moment, enhancing the overall experience.

The original European production of Nora and Jim enjoyed a sold-out run-in Dublin in June 2022, with subsequent performances in the James Joyce Centre, the Irish Cultural Centre in Hammersmith, London, Edinburgh and Glasgow. In November 2022 it was performed upon the invitation of Irish President Michael D. Higgins at Áras an Uachtaráin, in front of an invited audience. At fifty-five minutes, this one act is prime for touring and a perfect complement to Bloomsday celebrations around the world.

Johnny O’Callaghan & Lisa Dobbyn, NORA AND JIM Written by Nora Connolly

Performance Dates, Times, Details

There will be six shows at The Glendale Room (127 Artsakh Avenue, Glendale 91206) beginning Thursday, June 6th, Friday, June 7th, Saturday, June 8th, Thursday, June 13th, and Friday, June 14th and Saturday, June 15th @ 8:00PM. Tickets for the Glendale performance are $25.00 and available on Eventbrite HERE

There will be three shows at The Broadwater Studio (1078 Lillian Way, 90038) on June 9th at 12:30pm, June 16th at 2:00pm (*special Bloomsday performance) and June 17th at 9:30 pm. Tickets are $20. To purchase tickets and get more information about Nora and Jim go to The Hollywood Fringe Festival Website HERE.


Lisa Dobbyn (Nora Barnacle) is originally from Dublin, Ireland. Lisa studied at the Gaiety School of Acting by night, while pursuing a BA in English in Trinity College by day. She has worked extensively on stage both in Ireland and Los Angeles. Theatre credits include The Human Spirit by Carole Eglash-Kosoff at the Odyssey in Los Angeles, Patricia Burke Brogan’s Eclipsed, Martin Lynch’s Dockers, Gary Mitchell’s Loyal Women and Jimmy Murphy’s The Muesli Belt (Theatre Banshee, Los Angeles). TV credits include The Rookie, S.W.A.T., The Offer, For All Mankind and a recurring role on 911: Lone Star. She has also appeared in many national commercial campaigns. This is Lisa’s second collaboration with Ronan, the first being his production of The Cherry Orchard at the New Theatre in Dublin, 2001.

Johnny O’Callaghan – (James Joyce) has played Bloomsday at the annual Joyce celebration in the Hammer Museum, as a founding member since 2010. He has also played the role of Stephen Dedalus in Bloomsday on Broadway. Johnny’s one man show Who’s Your Daddy? played to sold out houses in Los Angeles, New York’s Irish Repertory Theatre, the Edinburgh Festival and Crow’s Toronto in Canada. He began acting with the Belfast Youth and Community Theatre, built to inspire unity between Protestant and Catholic actors. The North American premiere of Conor McPherson’s Rum and Vodka followed in New York, Los Angeles and Toronto, leading to recordings with NBC and HBO. Other Off-Broadway successes include Ladies and Gents in Central Park, Howie The Rookie at The Irish Arts Center. The Hostage at The Irish Repertory. Regionally he played Anatol in the The Affairs of Anatol, The Lonesome West (The Odyssey), The Live Full Monty and Godzillain Crow’s Theatre North American premiere. He joined the sci-fi world by recurring as Niam on the TV series Stargate Atlantis. Other film and TV credits include Joyce Carol Oates’ We Were The Mulvaneys, CBS’s The Agency, the Independent hit Clutch, the CBS movie of the week Deep In My Heart, Haven’t We Met Before and Martin Scorsese’s Gangs of New York. The miniseries ZOS: Zone of Separation and Forest for Comedy Central. Johnny was named Los Angeles Irishman of the Year, 2016 and is also one of LA’s most sought after therapists. His private practice is in the Hollywood Hills, and now over Zoom.

Dermot Kiernan (Special Musical Guest) is a native of Ireland and hails from County Meath. His Bachelor’s degree is in classical accordion performance, and he has competed internationally on the instrument. He also holds a Master’s degree from The National University of Ireland, Maynooth in Medieval Music Performance and Musicology. He holds another master’s degree from the University of Paris-Sorbonne, studying with medieval scholars, Benjamin Bagby and Katarina Livljanic. In 2009, he joined the Aontas Choral Ensemble as part of the internationally acclaimed music group Celtic Woman, touring internationally with them for six years.

Dermot joined the prestigious Los Angeles Master Chorale in 2018 and performs regularly with the LA Philharmonic at Walt Disney Concert Hall. In 2020, he joined the cast of the Master Chorale’s production of Lagrime di San Pietro directed by Peter Sellars and collaborated with artist Doug Aitken for his installation Mirage in Gstaad, Switzerland, performing Mr. Aitken’s Song Mirror. Dermot’s voice can be heard on various TV and Film soundtracks including Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, Disney’s Jungle Cruise and as a soloist on the hit TV shows Vikings and Quantico.
He is sought after as a pianist and guitarist, and he tours regularly across the US and Europe.

Ronan Wilmot (Director) is one of the most celebrated artists in modern Irish theatre. A veteran of the stage, in 1980, Ronan joined The Royal Shakespeare Company, where he appeared in seven productions including Trevor Nunn’s award-winning production of Juno and the Paycock. Other stage appearances include Strawboys (Peacock Theatre), A Tale of Two Cities (Gate Theatre), Juno and the Paycock (Chicago Theatre Festival) and a tour of England with The Plough and the Stars. Ronan’s director credits include Mr. Joyce Is Leaving Paris by Tom Gallagher and Hatchet by Heno Magee. (Kings Head, Islington) He directed and starred in The Entertainer at the New Theatre. Other directorial credits include The Ginger Man, Shirley Valentine, The Entertainer, The Cherry Orchard and The Hostage (The New Theatre, Dublin), Exiles and The Homecoming (Friends of the Opera Theatre, Berlin) and Murder In The Cathedral (Christ Church Cathedral) to name but a few. He most recently toured Ireland with The Tailor and Antsy.

Nora Connolly (Writer) trained at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin. She has performed at the National Theatre, The Bristol Old Vic, The Tricycle, The Riverside Studios, The Royal Lyceum, The Edinburgh Festival and many other regional theatres throughout the UK. Nora has performed in many Irish plays including The Playboy of The Western World, Shadow of a Gunman, The Plough and The Stars, Juno And The Paycock, The Midnight Court, Translations, Rouge, Rifles and Revolvers, Dancing At Lughnasa, The Cripple of Inishmaan and The Beauty Queen of Leenane. Her most recent theatre work includes These Halcyon Days by Deirdre Kinahan in Gothenburg, Sweden. Her T.V. work includes Fresh Meat and the upcoming T.V. version of Four Weddings And A Funeral.

Her devised one woman show Nora’s Bloomsday has been performed at the Liverpool Arts Festival and The Irish Cultural Centre Hammersmith.

Marcus Fox (Producer) Fox is an Emmy Award winning executive producer and director with over twenty years of experience in film, documentaries and non- scripted tv genres. In addition to a wealth of non-scripted hits, such as The Osbournes, The Anna Nicole Show and Road Rules, Marcus helped create and executive produce three seasons of the multi award- winning kids series, Paradise Run. Fox has directed and produced Hollywood Trials for RTE and helped create the Los Angeles Irish Film Festival. He holds an honorary Irish man accolade from the Mayor of Los Angeles and is a board member of the Contemporary Irish Arts Center Los Angeles (CIACLA).

*This Press Release courtesy of Lisa Dobbyn and Bertha Rodriguez at Theatre Asylum

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