We’re excited and proud to announce that we are facilitating a new school project called Gwerin Glas, thanks to ‘Explore’ project funding from The Arts Council of Wales.
Gwerin Glas will introduce primary age school children to Welsh traditional music through a series of workshops. These workshops will be delivered by experienced musicians and educators, and will provide the children with first experiences of, and an opportunity to engage with a form of music that is deeply rooted in Welsh culture and history. The project aims to foster a love of Welsh traditional music in young people, and inspire them to continue their musical journey beyond the program.
Gwerin Glas will provide children with an accessible and engaging learning experience that will help to foster a lifelong love for music and the folk arts, with the hopes to inspire them to continue to pursue their musical interests beyond the workshops. We will provide further support for teachers wishing to explore these traditions further through the creation of resource packs
which will be available to all schools. These will be complimented by access to our existing resources which are available through our website here.
Alongside the well known benefits of making music, engagement with traditional arts brings unique opportunities and benefits, such as increased Welsh language skills & the opportunity to engage with traditions which have been passed down through generations. The Welsh language is an intrinsic part of the folk tradition here in Wales; sharing our folk traditions can help create a sense of ownership of the Welsh language both to children in Welsh medium and to those in English medium schools. Taking part in these traditions can help us to feel a sense of belonging within the community, both on a local and a national level.
We have seen first hand through our previous projects how these traditions can act as a key to unlocking Cymraeg for people who have not had the opportunity to be given the Welsh language previously.
The first two schools to take part in Gwerin Glas were Ysgol Bryncethin in Bridgend, and Ysgol Capelulo in Conwy. Angharad Jenkins and Patrick Rimes were our session leaders and led four group sessions between them. The groups had the chance to hear Patrick and Angharad talking about Welsh traditional music and to hear them perform. The groups then learnt to sing Mi Welais Jac y Do, which was then used to learn to dance Jac y Do.
We’ve had some lovely feedback from the schools, and can’t wait to enjoy more sessions with schools across Wales.
Teacher: ‘The children thoroughly enjoyed learning about Folk Music and different Welsh traditions. They were fully engaged and were very keen to learn more by asking lots of interesting questions.’
Pupil: ‘The music was really nice, I loved the dancing and it was nice to get active. I really liked hearing Folk music from around the world’
Patrick Rimes running a workshop in Ysgol Capelulo in Conwy.
Angharad Jenkins running a workshop in Ysgol Bryncethin in Bridgend.