Events – Irish America https://irishamerica.com Irish America Magazine Thu, 18 Apr 2019 19:22:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.10 82361074 Music and Merriment at Irish America’s 2019 Hall of Fame https://irishamerica.com/2019/03/music-and-merriment-at-irish-americas-2019-hall-of-fame/ https://irishamerica.com/2019/03/music-and-merriment-at-irish-americas-2019-hall-of-fame/#respond Fri, 22 Mar 2019 20:29:41 +0000 https://irishamerica.com/?p=41345 Read more..]]> On Thursday, March 14, hundreds gathered in the Cotillion Room of the Pierre Hotel in Manhattan for Irish America magazine’s 10th annual Hall of Fame luncheon. This year’s inductees were lawyer, public servant, and peacemaker John C. Dearie; broadcaster Adrian Flannelly; Academy Award-winning director Terry George; Irish Repertory Theatre founders Charlotte Moore and Ciarán O’Reilly; Grammy Award-winning musician Arturo O’Farrill; and NYPD Commissioner James P. O’Neill. Each inductee received a Waterford Crystal Lismore bowl.

The event began with a cocktail reception in the Regency Room, where the honorees and guests mingled and took photos with Irish America founders Patricia Harty and Niall O’Dowd.

At noon, the inductees and guests made their way into the adjoining Cotillion Room and were seated. Niall O’Dowd welcomed everyone and introduced Adrian Flannelly, host of The Adrian Flannelly Show, which has been on the air for the last 50 years. Flannelly acknowledged his cousin Brian O’Dwyer, the prominent lawyer, immigration lobbyist, and Grand Marshal of New York City’s 2019 St. Patrick’s Day parade, as well as other family members who were in attendance, and he thanked his wife, Aine Sheridan, saying she was “the person who actually made the radio show a success. She refuses to be associated with 50 years of broadcasting because she claims she wasn’t born at that time.

Adrian Flannelly speaks to the group gathered in the Cotillion Room for the 2019 Hall of Fame inductions.

He added: “What Irish America magazine brought to America is a miracle in itself, and trust me when I say that when Niall and Trish Harty arrived in this town here with even roaming out the concept of a glossy magazine, I thought to myself, ‘God, this is something I would absolutely love to be associated with.’ It’s terrific, and I’m very, very, very grateful and honored to get this award from what has brought Irish America up several notches to the top rung. Again, congratulations.”

Flannelly also congratulated fellow inductee John C. Dearie, who spent 25 years as his cohost of the radio program.

Co-founder and editor-in-chief of Irish America magazine Patricia Harty, who introduced NYPD Commissioner James P. O’Neill. O’Neill expressed his great pride in being the grandson of four Irish emigrants. He recognized his mother, Helen, and prompted a round of applause for her raising seven kids. He joked, “Growing up, I was number four at a time when I wasn’t really sure if she knew what my name was, but that’s okay.”

“I certainly wouldn’t be standing up here if it wasn’t for the 54,000 men and women of the New York City Police Department,” said O’Neill, “and the thousands of people that have come before us. NYC was transformed, and it wasn’t transformed by magic.”

Harty then introduced a special guest, Grammy winner Judy Collins, who sang her song “Dreamers” followed by “Danny Boy.”

Following Collins, the next inductee to speak was Afro-Cuban jazz musician Arturo O’Farrill, who expressed his honor in being among the other inductees, saying, “I was deeply surprised to be informed of this induction. To find myself in the company of Commissioner O’Neill – not behind bars – Adrian Flannelly – not on the air – Ciarán O’Reilly, Charlotte Moore, and Terry George – and not in the audience! John C. Dearie and not in litigation is a huge surprise and an honor. Their achievements and accolades are the stuff of legend.”

He added: “We O’Farrills like the idea of being confusing. We like being many things: Irish, German, Mexican, Cuban, jazz, classical, Latin, New Yorker – but citizens of the world, as is the predilection of the Irish…I am grateful to immigrants and the vitality that they bring to the shores that they land on. I am thrilled to know that wherever we go we initiate dialogue and bring about change.” O’Farrill then played a one-of-a-kind rendition of “Danny Boy” on the grand piano.

Folk songstress Judy Collins poses with jazz musician and new inductee Arturo O’Farrill after each performed their own renditions of “Danny Boy.”

Harty invited everyone to enjoy their lunch as the main course was set. Later, as dessert was served, singer Niamh Hyland and guitarist Shu Nakamura performed “Fields of Gold.” Harty then introduced Consul General Ciarán Madden, who reflected, “Of all the things the Irish have brought to America – the music, the literature, the dance – the one that stands out above all, I think, is public service.”

The next inductees to speak were Charlotte Moore and Ciarán O’Reilly, who together founded the Irish Repertory Theatre 30 years ago. “Most days,” said O’Reilly, “the glamor of running a theater company has to do with the minutiae of fixing a broken toilet or running out for lozenges for the actor who has gotten bronchitis, or getting on the phone to persuade an agent that his movie star client would become an even bigger star if he were to act at Irish Rep for no money. And then comes a day like today, when Irish America calls us and we get to put on a suit and tie and put on airs and come to the Pierre Hotel and mix with police commissioners and Academy and Grammy Award-winners.”

Moore then took to the microphone, saying, “If all life is a circle, this honor today is significant for me. My ancestors left County Wexford in another century, landed on these shores and made their way west to Kentucky and southern Illinois to work in the coal mines. They left with little in their pockets, but their blood was plush with heritage… It’s been a privilege to honor the heritage of a country that’s produced the finest playwrights in any language. The fact that my name will hang in the Hall of Fame in New Ross, County Wexford, is deeply meaningful to me.”

After that, O’Dowd introduced John C. Dearie, who called on Irish Americans to be more hands-on with Irish issues, saying, “What we need to do is get the CEOs and leaders in all the fields of cultures in our country – the Irish presence – to be more involved in not only the search for peace in Northern Ireland, but for the support of all of these other issues: immigration, the McGuinness Principles, the concern about Brexit and what it means for the Good Friday Agreement. That’s our challenge. Our challenge is to get activation and motivation.”

Finally, O’Dowd introduced Oscar-winning director of films such as Hotel Rwanda and In the Name of the Father, Terry George. “This room epitomizes America – Irish America,” said George, “what happened to me and what’s great about both our countries. Because gathered here is just the epitome of decency, hope, luck, and talent… This is the land of hope, the land of dreamers. I couldn’t even have dreamed the possibility of this. Clearly, my mother didn’t when she said I should get another job.”

Prominent director and new inductee Terry George shows off his trophy, which he told the group he planned to fill with fresh flowers every day.

He added: “I try to transmit the great sense of justice, humanism, passion, and caring that our nation has, to transmit that into literature and into a movement, that we can lay the foundation for generations to come to say that they can be great Irish Americans, that they can be great citizens of the world.”

Niamh Hyland and Shu Nakamura closed out the presentation, performing “Wild Mountain Thyme.” Inductees and guests finished their desserts and mingled more before departing, taking the newest issue of Irish America on their way out.

The Hall of Fame is located in Ireland aboard the Dunbrody Famine Ship in New Ross, County Wexford. Founded in 2010 in celebration of Irish America magazine’s 25th anniversary, the Irish America Hall of Fame honors the extraordinary achievements of Irish-American leaders, from their significant accomplishments and contributions to American society to the personal commitment to safeguarding their Irish heritage and the betterment of Ireland.  ♦

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For more information on our Hall of Fame and other events, contact Maggie Holland at Maggie@irishamerica.com or Mary Gallagher at Mary@irishamerica.com

See slideshow below for more photos of the Hall of Fame!

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Celebrating thePast and Present https://irishamerica.com/2018/12/celebrating-the-past-and-present/ https://irishamerica.com/2018/12/celebrating-the-past-and-present/#comments Fri, 21 Dec 2018 20:26:30 +0000 https://irishamerica.com/?p=39788 Read more..]]> Niamh Hyland sang “Silent Night” in Irish, and a hush fell over the room – a splendid room with tall windows, looking out over Central Park.

So often at Irish events, music is the thread that holds it all together, acting as the link to the ancestors across the generations, and this occasion was no different.

It was December 12, and some 250 Irish and Irish Americans were gathered for the annual Business 100 luncheon honoring Irish and Irish-American executives.

It was a grand occasion that drew people from around the country; from California to St. Louis, from Philadelphia to Boston; and across the generations from fifth- to Irish-born, each honoree with his or her own memory of someone meaningful in their lives who had encouraged them to never give up on themselves.

 

The splendor of the Metropolitan Club, decked out in its Christmas finery, gave me pause. Earlier, as Niamh, from County Leitrim, and her guitarist, Shu Nakamura, who was born in Japan, did their pre-lunch sound check, I looked out the window of the ballroom.

From the height of the third floor, I could see over the horse and carriage drivers into the park. I was reminded that there was once a thriving village in Central Park called Seneca. Founded in 1825 by African Americans, the village flourished, and by the 1840s it included Irish and German immigrants.

The village midwife was Irish, a fact that struck a chord with me when I first read about Seneca in an article submitted to Irish America. I think of her helping to birth babies who would grow up to fight in the Civil War and travel beyond the confines of New York, building this great nation.

Alas, as with many Irish stories, there is a sad note. Seneca was destroyed, its villagers scattered to make way for Central Park.

I’ve heard the phrase “the great scattering” used in the context of the Irish diaspora, for indeed, we were scattered to the four corners of the world by conflict and starvation.

But, as with all great Irish gatherings, the focus on this occasion was celebrating life, and success, with a nod to past generations who helped make that success possible.

Eileen McDonnell, the chairman and CEO of life insurance giant Penn Mutual, gave an evocative keynote address that paid homage to her grandparents, all four of whom had immigrated from Ireland, and one of whom (her grandfather), was a musician from County Clare.

Her words reminded us that earlier generations, who made the journey across the ocean and across the land, to find work in mining camps and dig canals, didn’t have much in the way of material goods, but that they carried their music with them.

And on this grand occasion, Niamh’s soaring voice, paired with Shu’s guitar notes, provided a soulful connection to the ancestors. And, both being immigrants, they reminded us of our nation’s melting-pot heritage.

Beautiful.  ♦

For more on Niamh Hyland, including her new album, “Live to Love”, see:
http://www.niamhjhyland.com/

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Fitzpatrick Memorial Golf Tournament https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/fitzpatrick-memorial-golf-tournament/ https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/fitzpatrick-memorial-golf-tournament/#respond Sat, 01 Sep 2018 06:40:59 +0000 https://irishamerica.com/?p=37735 Read more..]]> The Eithne & Paddy Fitzpatrick Memorial Fund held its 25th Annual Golf Tournament in May at the Sleepy Hollow Country Club, one of the United States’ most prestigious golf courses, located in Scarborough, NY.

Well-known hotelier John Fitzpatrick, pictured third from left in the above photo, founded the Eithne & Paddy Fitzpatrick Memorial Fund in 1993 in memory of his late parents to honor the charitable spirit they demonstrated throughout their lives. Since its inception, the fund has raised $4 million for a variety of worthy causes in both Ireland and the United States. Some of these include the Barretstown Camp, the Integrated Education Fund, the Mary Robinson Library, and the New York Irish Center. The fund’s latest project was the O’Hanlon Park Boxing Club in Dundalk, which just reopened in a spacious new facility that will be used by over 200 children and adults daily. This is just the latest of the fund’s accomplishments in its 25 years of working together to help those in need.

This year’s event raised over $380,000 and was attended by a variety of Irish public figures, including the Irish Ambassador to the United Nations Geraldine Byrne Nason, former Irish Soccer manager, Mick McCarthy, actor Matt McCoy, and Irish golf pro Eamonn Darcy. ♦

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Women of Concern Annual Luncheon https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/women-of-concern-annual-luncheon/ https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/women-of-concern-annual-luncheon/#respond Sat, 01 Sep 2018 06:39:11 +0000 https://irishamerica.com/?p=37738 Read more..]]> The Women of Concern Annual Luncheon was held on Thursday, June 21 at the Pierre Hotel, with two very worthy honorees, Aine Brazil, Vice Chairman of Thornton Tomasetti, and William Moore, Executive Director of the Eleanor Crook Foundation. Aine, who was born in County Galway, is a leading structural engineer on such projects as the Hudson Yards development on the west side of Manhattan. William is stewarding the rapid growth of the Eleanor Crook Foundation’s resources through nutrition advocacy in numerous countries, including Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Malawi, and Nigeria.

Concern board member, and guest speaker, Jumana Culligan with her family.

This year’s event was particularly special, marking Concern’s 50th year as an organization tackling extreme poverty on a global level. ♦

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Irish Repertory Theatre Gala Honors https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/irish-repertory-theatre-gala-honors/ https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/irish-repertory-theatre-gala-honors/#respond Sat, 01 Sep 2018 06:38:29 +0000 https://irishamerica.com/?p=37745 Read more..]]> The Irish Repertory Theatre began its 30th-anniversary season honoring Tina Sainti Flaherty, the author, philanthropist, and businesswoman, at its annual gala on June 4 at the Town Hall in N.Y.C. Broadway stars, such as Jeremy Irons and Melissa Errico, backed by a live orchestra and a full chorus, celebrated the life and music of Alan Jay Lerner on the centenary of his birth, with long time favorites from Brigadoon, Paint Your Wagon, Gigi, My Fair Lady, and other hit shows. The performance was followed by dinner at Bryant Park Grill. The Irish Repertory Theatre, located at 132 W 22nd St, New York, N.Y., was founded by Charlotte Moore and Ciaran O’Reilly in 1988. ♦

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Power Women Meet Designing Irish https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/power-women-meet-designing-irish/ https://irishamerica.com/2018/09/power-women-meet-designing-irish/#respond Sat, 01 Sep 2018 06:26:15 +0000 https://irishamerica.com/?p=37687 Read more..]]> Irish America celebrated its 2018 Power Women in New York this spring with the induction of six phenomenal leaders of business, journalism, and politics.

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Irish America inducted six amazing women – three Irish-born and three Irish-American – into the magazine’s Power Women group on the morning of May 17.

The gathering, at the Bank of Ireland Startlab in New York City, was co-hosted by #WearingIrish, a movement founded in 2016 by Margaret Molloy that connects Irish designers with American entrepreneurs, clients, and potential partners.

Power Woman and Bloomberg TV anchor Vonnie Quinn, a native of County Limerick, has her own Irish connection to fashion in that her cousin Vonnie Reynolds, was one of Ireland’s foremost designers. She noted that the very dress she was wearing was, in fact, a Vonnie Reynolds creation from the 1980s. Quinn said that she was most proud of the fact that Ireland, “despite it’s conservative past, has now shown itself to be at the forefront of everything that’s inclusive and transnational.”

Audrey Hendley, also an Irish immigrant, who is the president of American Express Travel and Lifestyle Services, focused on the Irish drive and ability to overcome and hearkened “back to those early days, when it took a lot of brute force determination, to get things over the line, and to achieve your goals, and to actually articulate your goals to yourself.” She also talked about the Irish tradition of hospitality which is key factor in the travel industry, saying: “I have access to a worldwide network Irish people, who open up their hearts, their minds, and even their homes to each other.”

Irish American Jenny Rooney, who has been editor of the CMO Network at Forbes for seven years and counting, went into the important influence Irish writers had on her intellectual growth. “The rich tradition of storytelling that’s so core to Irish culture formed the foundation of, certainly my education, and then, as a journalist, my career,” she reflected. “I was an English literature and creative writing major in college, and that found me poring over the tomes of the likes of Joyce and Wilde and Beckett, even Faulkner and O’Neill.”

New York State Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, also an Irish American, remarked, “I constantly find reasons to talk about – almost on a daily basis – the trials and tribulations faced by my grandparents when they made that journey from Ireland, fleeing poverty like so many millions did, coming here with nothing but the shirts on their backs, and starting as domestics in Chicago.” Hochul also discussed her own family’s role in keeping the tradition of Irish apparel alive, through her mother’s small business selling exclusively, authentically Irish textiles. “She sold fisherman’s sweaters, and she sold the beautiful capes, and fabrics,” she elaborated, “so this was part of our opportunity to showcase  – probably 35 to 40 years ago – the work of Irish designers.”

Margaret Molloy, CMO of Siegel+Gale, founder of #WearingIrish and co-host of the PW event. She is flanked on the left and right by Jenny Rooney and Kathy Hochul, respectively.

Inductee Anne Keating, who joined the WearingIrish initiative after retiring from her position as a senior vice president at Bloomingdale’s, asserted that her Tyrone-born great-grandfather, Patrick Short, established her family’s connection to the fashion industry. “He immigrated to America and went on to have a successful business as a shirt maker. The New York tax records for 1864 says his business was listed at 692 Broadway, and he had an inventory of 117 shirts with a value of $439. I guess that was the beginning of my retail career.” Inductee Deirdre Quinn, who is the founder and CEO of Lafayette 148, a women’s fashion company, recalled her experience as a first-generation Irish American. “My parents were born in Northern Ireland,” she told the group. “And they certainly made sure that as we grew up, we spent our summers in Ireland, so that we would remember where we came from, and I always will appreciate that. My parents lived the American Dream – the ability to come here, to work hard, and to have a better life. And my dad absolutely didn’t want me to be in the fashion business. He told me that Irish people don’t belong in the fashion business, but I had to follow my own dream.” ♦

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The Wall Street 50 Awards https://irishamerica.com/2004/10/the-wall-street-50-awards/ https://irishamerica.com/2004/10/the-wall-street-50-awards/#respond Fri, 01 Oct 2004 06:47:32 +0000 https://irishamerica.com/?p=40139 Irish America magazine and Financial Dynamics Business Communications co-hosted the 7th annual Wall Street 50 Awards at the Sky Club on Wednesday, July 14, 2004. Chairman of Allen & Co. Donald R. Keough was the keynote speaker and many noted Irish-American figures of the financial community attended.

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Ireland’s Season of ReJoyce https://irishamerica.com/2004/08/irelands-season-of-rejoyce/ https://irishamerica.com/2004/08/irelands-season-of-rejoyce/#respond Sun, 01 Aug 2004 06:55:43 +0000 http://irishamerica.com/?p=34964 Read more..]]> For millions of people, June 16 is always an extraordinary day. On that day in 1904, Leopold Bloom made his epic journey through Dublin as described by James Joyce in Ulysses, one of the world’s most highly acclaimed modern novels. “Bloomsday” — the St. Patrick’s Day of literature — has become a tradition for Joyce enthusiasts all over the world.

Nowhere is Bloomsday more rollicking or exuberant than in Dublin, home of Molly and Leopold Bloom, Buck Mulligan, Stephen Dedalus, Gerty McDowell and James Joyce himself. The Irish, who reviled Joyce when he was alive, now reverently tramp the streets of Dublin retracing the footsteps of Leopold Bloom, visiting the various places immortalized by this latter-day Edwardian Odysseus.

Participants in the ReJoyce festival.

But this year Bloomsday was extra special. It is 100 years since that first journey took place, and the Irish are in the midst of a huge, ebullient, multifaceted celebration with the jubilant title ReJoyce. Only the Irish could turn the events of a single day one hundred years ago into a five-month world-class festival, with a spectacular range of theatrical, artistic, musical and educational events.

The Irish Museum of Modern Art is hosting “High Faluting Stuff,” an exhibition of Joyce-influenced art, while the Royal Hibernian Academy presents another exhibition of art and installations by Joyce-inspired artists such as Matisse, Brancusi, Jess, Man Ray and even Joyce himself. The National Library of Ireland is featuring an extensive literary exhibition devoted to Joyce, displaying a number of previously unseen notebooks, drafts, and correspondence. Concerts, plays, a film festival, photographic exhibitions, lightshows, pageant and street-theatricals are all part of the fare planned.

Additional ReJoyce enthusiasts.

For those who wish to learn something about Joyce, three venues are in the must visit category.

The first is the Martello Tower at Sandycove, (eight miles south of Dublin) which is now the site of the James Joyce Museum. Built as a cannon installation in 1804 against a possible Napoleonic invasion, it is now filled with Joycean memorabilia including rare first editions of his writings (including an edition of Ulysses illustrated by Henri Matisse), personal possessions, letters, documents, photographs and portraits. The top of the tower commands an imposing, and often breezy, view of Dublin Bay, while the room immediately below is still maintained as it was during Joyce’s stay (as a guest) in the Tower. Books, cards and souvenirs are available, with staff on hand to provide a guided tour and answer queries.

Across the city, past Trinity College to Dublin’s north side, is the James Joyce Centre (North Great George’s Street) which is located in a beautifully restored 18th century townhouse. Here a wide range of material connected with Joyce, including rare translations of his work, is on display. Also at the Centre, visitors can books guided walking tours that explore the north inner city — Joyce’s creative heartland.

The last of the three sites, The James Joyce House, on the banks of the River Liffey at 15 Usher’s Island, is still a work in progress. Dating back to the 13th century, it was the home of Joyce’s aunts, and it was here that “The Dead,” one of his most famous short stories from Dubliners, was set and was later brought to the screen in John Huston’s last film, The Dead. Having lain derelict for nearly two decades, the house was saved from the wrecker’s ball by Dublin barrister Brendan Kilty, who is restoring this important landmark to its former glory. When renovations are completed, visitors will be able to stay at Usher’s Island. The venue can currently be hired for corporate functions and intimate Edwardian dinners, similar to those which Joyce would have attended. Art works by leading Irish artists are on display, and guided tours of the house are available.

Re Joyce commenced on April 1 and ends on August 31, bringing Dublin to the focus of world attention. The newly confident, multicultural, refurbished, effervescent, affluent Dublin is seemingly ready not only to embrace its Joycean past, but also to welcome a superfluity of tourists keen to join in and celebrate. This, above all, is the season to visit Dublin to rejoice in ReJoyce.

 

BLOOMIN’ JOYCE ON FILM

Sean Walsh, the writer, director and producer of Bloom, which stars Stephen Rea as Leopold Bloom and Angeline Ball as Molly, talks to John Hagan. Bloom was screened in New York on June 10 by The Irish Repertory Theatre. At press time, its American distribution was still being negotiated.

Bloom writer/director/producer Sean Walsh.

John Hagan: Most people give up on Ulysses by page eight. What ever possessed you to make a film of it?

Sean Walsh: For that very reason! I was attracted to the fact that while Ulysses is recognized as the greatest novel of the 20th century, few people have ever read it. I wanted to bring the story to a wider audience, and reveal the humor, and most importantly, the humanity of the novel.

My hope is that anyone who watches it will sympathize with the characters. More importantly, I hope that they will see a part of themselves reflected on the screen.

Poster from Bloom.

 

In a previous film of Ulysses made in 1967, its director Joseph Strick believed that a filmmaker’s duty to great books is to copy them literally. Does your approach differ?

I believe that the filmmaker should remain faithful to the integrity of the text, but I also think that you have to be aware of the medium of film. We begin with a portion of Molly Bloom’s soliloquy and return to the same point in time at the end of the film. In Joyce’s novel, the soliloquy only occurs in the last chapter but I felt that this wouldn’t work for the movie audience.

Bloom is not a big-budget film. How did you manage to attract actors such as Stephen Rea, Hugh O’Connor and Patrick Bergin?

SW: All of the cast, and indeed crew, were attracted by the nature of the project, by the script, and also the opportunity to work on an adaptation of the greatest novel of the 20th century. In terms of direction, my approach was fairly simple — I surrounded myself with a highly talented and motivated cast and crew, and I sought their ideas and input at every stage of the film. Honesty and integrity also played a key part; and the atmosphere on the set was amazing. I can honestly say that I can’t imagine ever doing anything as challenging or exhilarating again.

Stephen Rea and Angeline Ball in a scene from Bloom.

How faithful have you been to Joyce’s Dublin?

It was impossible, because of budget, to re-create all the areas depicted by Joyce. However, we spent years looking for and securing the right locations in Dublin that would provide us with the right “feel” and “look” for the film.

What difficulties did you face in making the movie?

SW: It was all about money. All about raising the five million euros needed to bring it to the screen. Nobody believed we could actually make a film of Ulysses. ♦

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American Ireland Fund https://irishamerica.com/2004/08/american-ireland-fund/ https://irishamerica.com/2004/08/american-ireland-fund/#respond Sun, 01 Aug 2004 06:46:24 +0000 http://irishamerica.com/?p=35066 The American Ireland Fund held its Twenty-ninth Annual New York Gala at the Waldorf-Astoria on May 6, 2004. The lavish event was led by dinner Chairman Robert McCann and attended by 1,400 guests. The international organization reached its goal of raising over $2.5 million to support its many cultural and humanitarian programs. ♦

 

The Humanitarian Award and the Leslie C. Quick Jr. Award. (Photo Credit: James Higgins)

 

The Waldorf Astoria’s Grand Ballroom. (Photo Credit: James Higgins)

 

Bob McCann presents the A.I.F. Humanitarian Award to Dan and Patricia Rooney. (Photo Credit: James Higgins)

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Museum Honors the Irish https://irishamerica.com/2004/08/museum-honors-the-irish/ https://irishamerica.com/2004/08/museum-honors-the-irish/#respond Sun, 01 Aug 2004 06:45:49 +0000 http://irishamerica.com/?p=35093 Read more..]]> County Mayo family lauded for its many achievements.

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The O’Dwyer family was honored at a benefit for the Lower East Side Tenement Museum in New York City. Three generations of the O’Dwyers, both immigrant and American-born, have worked to improve the lives of citizens of New York City, and many of them have been in Irish America’s Top 100.

The oldest of seven children, William O’Dwyer came to New York from County Mayo in 1910 and had a stellar career. Beginning as a policeman, he later became a magistrate, the D.A. of Brooklyn, the Mayor of New York, and the U.S. Ambassador to Mexico. William’s brother Jim, who worked at the FDNY fire brigade, died in 1926 in the line of duty. The youngest brother Paul was a member and president of the New York City Council and was the N.Y.C. Commissioner to the United Nations. Paul also promoted peace and equality in Northern Ireland, and the founding of the State of Israel.

The O’Dwyers remain dedicated to positions of service and social activism through the law firm O’Dwyer & Bernstien, a civil and human rights law firm. Paul’s son Brian O’Dwyer is a partner at the firm and is the Chairman of the Board of the Emerald Isle Immigration Center. He is also a former U.N. Human Rights Commissioner. His uncle Frank Durkan — son of Mary O’Dwyer Durkan — is also a partner at O’Dwyer & Bernstien. The family also boasts two court justices in its ranks, Joan O’Dwyer and John Byrne.

Former New York Mayor Mario Cuomo was one of many who honored the O’Dwyers at the celebration.

The O’Dwyers were honored because their achievements are rooted in their immigrant experiences and uphold the ethos of the Museum “to promote tolerance and historical perspective by the presentation and interpretation of immigrant and migrant experiences.”

Recently, real estate tycoon and Irish-American Raymond O’Keefe was named Chairman of the Museum’s Board of Trustees. The Museum is preparing for its upcoming Irish family apartment opening, set for May 2005. The Meehan-Moore family has been chosen to be immortalized in an exhibition to symbolize the Irish immigration story. ♦

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