On June 16, 1904, Leopold Bloom walked around Dublin.

Exactly 114 years later, on June 16, 2018, Islanders crowded into the Katharine Cornell Theatre in Vineyard Haven to honor those peregrinations, and the work of Joyce more broadly, with the 40th annual Bloomsday celebration.

The program included the recitation of nursery rhymes referenced in Joyce’s literature by Niki Patton, songs from the angelic voice of Molly Conole, and dramatic performances from Dubliners and Ulysses. All told, the night’s festivities included eight different performances.

“The rendering of Joyce made up of numerous eights reflects the eight sentences that make up the last chapter of Ulysses,” said program director John Crelan.

After 40 years of Bloomdsay celebrations that have taken Mr. Crelan from Martha’s Vineyard to Emmanuel Church in Boston to Bishop’s University in Quebec, Canada, and back again, he still finds a way to keep the program fresh. “Although we try to do a different selection from Molly each year [Molly is Bloom’s wife in Ulysses] 80 per cent of the show is different,” he said.

One of those differences included the world premier of Island composer Brian Hughes’ work from Anna Livia Plurabelle, a chapter in Finnegan’s Wake. The composition interspersed a recording of Joyce’s voice with quintal harmonies from the synthesizer.

“John Crelan asked me to write a piece for Bloomsday, and I was interested in finding a recording of Joyce speaking,” said Mr. Hughes after the show. “And then I worked from there.”

Many attendees noted that they would have to hear the music many more times to appreciate its complexity.

“That’s the idea,” said Mr. Hughes with a laugh.

More laughs came from Pam Schnatterly’s uproarious performance of Molly. Ms. Schnatterly spiced up her 10th rendition of the monologue which discusses, predominantly, her marriage proposal, with some PG-13 confessions about her bosom, much to the amusement of the audience, and the consternation of her family.

“John Crelan asked me to add in that section to add more humor to it,” said Ms. Schnatterly, holding a toddler in her arms. “And it worked!”

As to the contents of the monologue, she glanced at her two children and spouse with a wink in her eye, adding, “We’ll talk later.”

Also stepping out of his comfort zone was singer and director of the Martha’s Vineyard Spirituals Choir Jim Thomas, who performed a rousing rendition of the Indiana state song, On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away. Mr. Crelan has included the song in years past, noticing that phrases from the tune appear in Ulysses, but this was Mr. Thomas’s first time performing during Bloomsday.

“I was just so afraid of the words because I always sing spirituals,” he said. “But I felt a little bit more at ease once I got her sleeping at the churchyard.”

By that point there were only three lines left in the song, and even Ms. Schnatterly’s two-year-old was wide awake enjoying Mr. Thomas’s booming voice, and the culmination of another successful Bloomsday performance.