Trac Cymru has been working to ensure that the Welsh folk traditions continue to be cherished by the nation by supporting the development of young musicians and celebrating those artists who are already excelling in their craft. In recent times we have been excited to achieve our ambition to establish a high-profile awards event to help gain maximum recognition for our country’s finest talents.
There’s nothing like an award, and even a nomination, for drawing attention to quality and over several years the national broadcaster, and much-appreciated Patron of Trac Cymru, Frank Hennessy had talked with us about the idea of Wales having its own national Folk Awards ceremony. In 2019 we finally made it happen – and what a night it was! In a packed night at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff, the awards celebrated the many talented professional performers from the Welsh folk and traditional music scene.
The Awards Evening was broadcast on Frank Hennessy’s Celtic Heartbeat show on BBC Radio Wales and on Sioe Lisa Gwilym on BBC Radio Cymru, and featured live performances from some of the winners including The Trials Of Cato, Gwilym Bowen Rhys, VRï, and Calan. Other award winners included Martyn Joseph, Lleuwen, Alaw, and Pendevig, with a Lifetime Achievement Award going to song-collector Dr Roy Saer.
The Wales Folk Awards event was coordinated by a partnership between Trac Cymru, BBC Radio Wales and Radio Cymru, the Arts Council of Wales, and some significant figures from the world of Welsh folk. The winners were chosen from a long-list created by a panel representing folk club and festival organisers, young musicians, tradition bearers, music journalists and broadcasters, promoters, folk activists and enthusiasts.
All the winners, runners-up and more information about the awards can be found here
As the performing arts world begins to recover from the impact of Covid, the 2023 Awards are already being planned – with even greater input from the folk scene and the public. We’re seeking sponsorship for the event, including for individual awards, so please get in touch for more details if you would like to support this valuable national initiative.
Our plans to celebrate the milestone 21st anniversary of Trac Cymru in 2021 were put on hold thanks to the coronavirus, but we have continued with our mission to support even more people to develop their own special connection to our amazing national music. Please support us by sharing these stories with your friends and colleagues, and join us in posting your own happy memories about Welsh folk music on social media #TRAC21, and you can help us fund our work by making a donation today.