GWERINWYR GWENT WELSH FOLK DANCERS

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Diary Oct 2018

Gwerinwyr Diary October 2018 by Sue Venn

On Thursday 21st June GG made what is becoming an annual visit to the special needs school that used to be in Rhydfelin, but has now moved to the Treforest trading estate. Barbara Griffiths had once again put together a programme of Welsh culture interspersed with dance displays and audience participation dances. Some pupils have restricted mobility but nevertheless they join in enthusiastically and always seem to really appreciate the music provided by musicians Olly, Mick and Mike.

July was quiet this year, but on Wednesday 8th August we were in Cardiff Bay appearing at the National Eisteddfod. We had a 40 minute spot at midday in the food court under an open sided marquee on Roald Dahl Plas. The seating was pretty full and we were halfway through our programme when the heavens opened and people flooded in to take shelter....so we had a much bigger audience and smaller dance space than we were expecting.  However, we managed to complete our programme without mishap and I hope everyone enjoyed our performance....whether they had intended watching us or not!

Saturday 15th September was the culmination of a week of events for Newport’s inaugural Welsh Festival (Gwyl Newydd). This was held between 12 and 4pm at Malpas Court and was highly successful, attended by hundreds of people (all announcements were bilingual). As the local Welsh folk dancing team, GG was involved dancing two thirty minutes spots outside. Also on the bill were several choirs including one from each of the Welsh medium primary schools in Newport. IWCS ukulele orchestra played outside, there were games on the grassy areas and craft stalls inside the building. The afternoon’s entertainment was finished off by singer and musician Mei Gwynedd and the mass singing of the National Anthem. It is hoped the festival will grow in size over the coming years and will almost certainly require a bigger venue.

GG travelled to Stroud on 22nd September to take part in the dance day of the weekend festival (Sunday being music day). As with a lot of festivals, GG was the only non-Morris dancing team there, and so we provided a nice contrast in dance styles.  Unfortunately the weather was awful, raining almost continuously, which meant the plan to dance at various sites around the town had to be abandoned. Instead, we danced three spots under the cover of the entrance porch of the Subscription Rooms (see photo), as the helpful organisers were very mindful of our Welsh wool costumes which are not at all pleasant when wet!

Gwerinwyr Gwent is always seeking new members, and beginners or experienced dancers/musicians are very welcome. Practice night is Thursday 8pm-10pm at the Graig Community Hall Bassaleg....opposite the Ruperra pub.

For more details, visit our website www.gwerinwyrgwent.org.uk, ring 01495 271953, or just come along and give it a try.