Glen Hansard and Joseph O’ Connor appear together in conversation and performance at the Lime Tree Theatre, on Wednesday 11 October, with doors at 7.45pm and show at 8pm. Glen and Joseph will discuss the impact and effect New York has had on their personal and creative lives, and will perform the writing and songs born from that influence.
Oscar winning song-writer, musician and actor, Glen Hansard, began his career busking on the streets of Dublin, from where he formed acclaimed Irish band The Frames. Starting with Another Love Song released in 1991 on Island Records, the band went on to release another five studio albums, building both an international audience, and the lead singer’s reputation.
In 2007, along with Czech singer and pianist Markéta Irglová, Glen starred in the independent Irish film ‘Once’, a story of two musicians who decide to collaborate, and find themselves falling into a relationship. When ‘Falling Slowly’, the lead song from the film, won the Academy Award in 2007 for Best Original Song, the pair went on to form The Swell Season, recording an eponymous album and touring it across the world.
In 2011, as Once was transformed into a musical which premiered at the New York Theatre Workshop before transferring to Broadway in 2012 and continuing on to a world tour, a documentary also titled The Swell Season documented the duo’s post-Oscars success and vaguely mirrored the story depicted in Once, but in reverse as the relationship and band came to an end.
Glen recorded his first solo album, Rhythm and Repose, in New York in 2012, giving him a freedom to record the record how he wanted and with whom he wanted. He has been both a resident and regular visitor to the city, and its influence on him can be seen in a personal history with Jeff Buckley, David Bowie, Mic Christopher and many others.
Joseph O’Connor was born in the Liberties, the oldest part of Dublin, to authors Sean O’Connor and Marie O’Grady, who influenced his taste in all things literature, music and theatre.
Best known for his international bestselling novel, Star of the Sea, which sold more than a million copies and has been published in 38 languages, Joseph drew on substantial research from diaries, letters and conversations with relatives of emigrants to imagine and trace the journey of a famine ship via Cobh, Co Cork to New York, and the stories of some of its passengers.
The novel went on to win France’s Prix Millepages, Italy’s Premio Acerbi, the Irish Post Award for Fiction, the Neilsen
Bookscan Golden Book Award, an American Library Association Award, the Hennessy/SundayTribune Hall of Fame Award, and the Prix Litteraire Zepter for European Novel of the Year.
Author of a further seven novels, one of which, Ghost Light, being chosen as Dublin’s One City Book novel for 2011, Joseph O’ Connor has also written bestselling works of non-fiction, radio diaries, film scripts and stage-plays. He was the Harman Visiting Professor of Creative Writing/Writer in Residence at Baruch College, City University of New York, is Research Fellow at the New York Public Library and has lived in Manhattan on and off through the years. He is also Professor of the Creative Writing MA in the University of Limerick and in 2016 began a Summer School in Glucksman House at NYU.