Watch this space - as soon as we
book them for 2013, we will let you know. More details to follow.
Jamie Smith's MABON are Wales' finest purveyors of original
InterCeltic music. As comfortable on a world music stage as in a folk
setting, theirs is a music that travels beyond borders to explore the
forms and styles of the Celtic traditions and work them anew.
Through songs and melodies, from thoughtful lyrics to joyful jigs,
graceful mazurkas to ecstatic muñera, here is a band that can take you on
an emotional journey. More than just a show, more than inspired
composition and skilful arrangement, you can expect to witness the joy of
creating music expressed in dynamic, virtuosic performance.
Tunesmith, accordionist and lead singer Jamie is joined at the front of
the stage by fiddler Oliver Wilson-Dickson (of Ian Macmillan Orchestra and
Zsapora renown) and by Adam Rhodes on bouzouki. Recordings and occasional
concerts also feature special guest Calum Stewart, Scotland's leading
exponent of the wooden flute.
These are musicians whose intimate relationship provides a rich and
flexible soundscape, where delicate touch and driving tune are instantly
interchangeable; where lush, textural harmonies can underpin lyrical song,
or swift, slick rhythms can propel lightning melodies.
Behind them are two consummate accompanists, Matthew Downer on electric
and upright basses and percussionist Iolo Whelan at the drum kit. Between
them they create a fluid yet undeniably solid and groovy foundation,
tastefully supporting the front line through gracious airs, cantering
songs and dancey reels alike.
Jamie Smith's MABON is a band that draws readily on the vast range of its
members' influences, but does not attempt to make 'fusion'; instead it is
a constant pursuit of integrity in seeking to explore the music that gives
them - and their listeners - joy.
Their most notable performances in recent times include WOMAD, Womex,
Fairport's Cropredy Convention, Celtic Connections, and the massive
Festival Interceltique de L'orient, as one major festival after the next
becomes unable to ignore the band's quality, sheer exuberance and
Flossie Malavialle is a French singer who started getting
involved in the British folk scene in 2000-2001 while she was on a teacher
exchange in the North East of England.
After 12 years of teaching English full time in secondary schools in the
South of France, she decided to apply for a job as a French teacher in
England, as she felt it would boost her English to live abroad for a year.
She got one in Stockton-on-Tees and was living in Darlington at the time
(great part of the world to improve on your English, like). She had also
been singing for years in France before that and that’s why she found it
quite natural to turn up at the Darlington folk club one night to meet the
locals and sing a song... She didn’t realise then that this was going to
be the beginning of a new life in England for her.
Her repertoire is very open as she likes all sorts of different music
genres. Her songs include famous numbers, including Allan Taylor's "Roll
on the day", Kieran Halpin's "Making up the miles", Colum Sands' "The
child who asks why", Starrett and Laird's " John Condon" but also Edith
Piaf's eternal favourites "No regrets", "La vie en rose"... or Jacques
Brel's "Amsterdam" and "Ne me quitte pas"...
(sponsored by Newport Folk Club)
Tredegar House Folk Festival is
in for a treat from Bob! He has toured extensively throughout the UK,
Europe, USA, Australia and New Zealand, working mostly solo and producing
beautifully-crafted arrangements for voice and guitar, as well as
collaborating with many top musicians in various projects over the years.
He's always creating music and recordings of the finest quality, rewarded
by accolades and awards in abundance.
In 2011, he was invited to play the role of the Songman in the
award-winning National Theatre production of War Horse in London’s West
End, where he has consistently turned out superb performances singing and
playing the melodeon - a brand-new challenge for him, as the character
appears throughout the play as a commentator and driving force. The
theatre was so impressed with him that Bob's performing contract was
extended for six months.
This Spring at Tredegar House Folk Festival and thanks to Newport Folk
Club (based at the Fugitives Club at Rogerstone), Bob will be treating his
audiences to some of the songs from War Horse, some new material from the
BBC Radio Ballads and revisiting some favourites from his vast repertoire
of traditional and contemporary songs - expect an eclectic mix of
thought-provoking storytelling and laughter-inducing stuff with a bit of
audience participation and banter thrown in for good measure.
His impressive tributes have flooded in from across the world: "Most
probably the last great traditional folksinger we have today" (John Tams,
War Horse Songmaker)... “Blessed with one of the best voices in British
Folk Music today and coupled with astonishing guitar technique, Bob Fox
performs pure and unadulterated folk music at it’s finest” (Australian
National Folk Festival)... “A gloriously rich singing voice, deep and
resonant, honed by decades of performance, he combines his agile voice
with nimble guitar playing and applies his ample talents to a repertoire
of splendid material” (Sing Out, the folk magazine of the USA... “As soon
as I heard him sing, I realised that Bob must have one of the best voices
of all - he is an artist of great ability and integrity” (Ralph McTell).
With bags of charm, talent, and an abiding enthusiasm for
traditional song, The Young’uns are making a big impact on the UK folk
scene. Sean Cooney, David Eagle and Michael Hughes bring freshness and
dynamism to their arrangements of close harmony songs, both with and
without accompaniment. Everything from traditional sea and working songs
to more recent compositions is present in their repertoire, and is
delivered with originality and flair.
The lads hail from Teesside, which features strongly in the songwriting of
Sean Cooney. Though only in his mid-20s, he crafts powerful songs that are
beautifully evocative of the area’s heritage, and have a timeless quality
that many an older songwriter would envy.
MARTIN LEAMON and SILLE ILVES formed their unique Welsh –
Estonian collaboration shortly after the 2001 Viljandi Folkmusic Festival.
Since then they have developed a truly original fusion of two different
musical cultures, rooted in tradition yet thoroughly modern, they create
SILLE ILVES is one of the finest fiddle players in her native Estonia and
her adopted home of Wales.
She is also the leading exponent of the Hiiu-kannel (bowed harp), and an
astonishing singer. She has performed and recorded with many leading Welsh traditional
musicians and was a member of Taran.
MARTIN LEAMON plays guitar; his style has been described as 'magisterial'.
After are John Morris, Peter and Denise Smith who started singing together
purely for fun. That was a few years ago and they have gone from strength
to strength. With wonderful harmonies and great choruses you are assured a
good time with these guys (and gal!). Three big voices, unusual and
adventurous harmonies and plenty of Oomph.
veterans of the Shropshire folk scene, Rapsquillion's eclectic mix of
music is at its best towards the witching hour, when, all cares and sheets
to the wind, they tear off their inhibitions and display their crinkly
credentials to the world! Watch
(Liam Millinship & Jonny Matthew) is a Cardiff based folk-acoustic duo
performing original material and adaptations of traditional and
contemporary folk songs.
BarlowCree's magnetic stage presence, coupled with craftsman-like song
writing is captivating audiences on both the club and festival scenes.
BC's mix of traditional and self-penned work is receiving critical acclaim
in the print and online media.
Lucy is a 21
year old acoustic artist from Derby. She plays guitar and concertina but
considers her voice to be her first instrument.
Her sets are an eclectic mix of traditional and modern folk
interpretations, interspersed with her own songs. There is a natural and
easy sound to her music that is brought to life by expressive performance,
breath-taking delivery and Lucy's own brand of banter and crowd
Lucy has the ability to still an audience with the strength and purity of
her voice, which she uses to great effect on the unaccompanied songs that
sprinkle her set. She is developing into a fine songwriter and a
consummate performer who wows her audience with her genuine and sparkling
personality and her stunning voice.
Below are some of the teams performing at
the 2013 festival
Visiting International Teams
Young people of the little
village of Degumnieki started dancing together in 1983, led for all the
past 30 years by Anita Tropa. The dancers perform folk dances from all
etnographical regions of Latvia: Latgale, Vidzeme, Zemgale, Kurzeme. They
perform regularly at local events in Degumnieki and other towns of Latvia.
Every five years the group takes part in the Song and Dance Festival in
Latvia’s capital, Riga. The festival brings together choirs, dance groups
and folk artists from all over Latvia and the world to explore and present
the richness and diversity of Latvian culture. The group has participated
in Europiade in Spain, Denmark, Switzerland, Lithuania and Italy. An old
group tradition is to come together on the 1st September. It is the
beginning of a new season and their leader Anita’s birthday. Then
everybody can see a group of friends, people who love dancing and who are
very happy to be together.
Lovisa Folkdansare r.f. was
founded in November 1976.
During the past decades, the
organisation has had a vast number of members, and today it has about 20
For the time being, Ann-Lis
Kullström is the main instructor of the group, while Kalle Halmén and
Anders Backman are its main musicians.
Over the years, Lovisa
Folkdansare has pursued relationships with other folk dance groups in all
of the Northern countries, mostly due to twinning meetings. This has
resulted in several trips to Norway, Denmark
and Sweden, and the group has hosted guests from all these
countries just as many times.
Set dancing has seen a revival in
the last 25 to 30 years. At one time, the sets stayed in their own
district, but with the advent of travelling dancing masters, and more
people moving around the country, these sets have become universal.
All the dancers in the Mizen Set
Dancers come from County Cork and they are regular and popular visitors to
FOREIGNERS BRAG AND CROW
THAT DANCIN’S THEIR DEVOTION
‘TIS LITTLE THE CRAYCHYRS KNOW
OF THE POETRY OF MOTION;
THEIR POLKAS AND QUADRILLES
ARE NOTHIN’ ELSE BUT PRANCIN’
AN’ IRISH JIGS AND REELS
THE KING AND QUEEN OF DANCIN”
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Some of the Festival
Regulars and UK Teams
Bluegrass dance team from Llantarnam. They are regular visitors to
CARDIFF MORRIS (Cardiff)
Picture by Alun Roach
The Cardiff Morris are one of the
earliest 1970s revival sides. Formed in early 1970 by a small enthusiastic
group made up of experienced dancers who had migrated from Morris sides in
other parts of the country and local recruits with a feeling for folk
dance and song, they have been dancing the Morris in South Wales for over
Their dances are generally
derived from the Cotswold traditions, although you may see them perform
their own tradition of dance from the village of Nantgarw, just north of
Cardiff. This tradition is distinguished by the fact that it is an
eight-person dance rather than the Cotswold style with six dancers. The
local connection is reinforced by the Welsh dragon and Cardiff Coat of
Arms on their Welsh-weave "baldricks", or cross-sashes, and they are often
accompanied by Idris, their own dancing dragon.
In summer they can be seen in
Cardiff and around South Wales at festivals and fetes, or touring various
localities in the County of Glamorgan on Tuesday evenings.
CARDIFF LADIES MORRIS
Cardiff Ladies Morris are a Morris side based in
Cardiff , South Wales and were originally formed in 1973. Their kit
consists of white shirt, black waistcoat (with a dragon on the peplum) and
a bright red full skirt.
They like to put on a varied show of dancing: their
Llareggub tradition was created by Cardiff Ladies and is solely danced by
them. The name is taken from Dylan Thomas's famous play Under Milk Wood.
They don't take themselves too seriously - read Llareggub backwards!
Other dances in their repertoire originate from the Cotswolds and the
CITY CLICKERS (Clog)
City Clickers are a group of
dancers based in Bristol who have been dancing together as a group for
about fifteen years. They perform clog and step dances from various parts
of Northern England, Wales and from Scotland. They are also interested in
step dances from Canada: from Quebec, the Ottawa Valley, and of Cape
Breton island which is currently undergoing a major revival in Scotland.
Most of their members have been
involved in step dancing and other traditional dance forms for many years
and they have brought that experience and knowledge together to make a
vibrant, dazzling dance performance.
Clocs Canton Dance North West style morris dancing,
wearing clogs and using garlands & wavers. They have been dancing in and
around Cardiff since 1986. They are distinctive in the welsh colours of
red, white and green and unusual in kit with stripy trousers which always
makes them stand out from the crowd. New dancers and musicians are
always welcome. They meet in Canton on Thursdays.
Cobblers Awl are based in Cardiff
and perform clog steps from both Wales and England. They have tried to
keep both the Welsh and English clog-step traditions alive for the past
thirty-five years, since the group was first formed in Cwmbrân.
Their repertoire includes English
steps with routines from Lancashire, Lakeland and the North-east of
England, and over the past decade they have developed Welsh stepping,
embedding traditional elements within a contemporary polyrhythmic
framework. They wear wooden-soled leather clogs, all handmade by one or
other of the few craftsmen still creating such traditional footwear.
They practice at St Catherine's
Scout Hall, Pontcanna in Cardiff on Monday nights, and if you are
interested, please contact them.
Cornucopia is a group of dancers
and musicians based in Wantage, Oxfordshire, UK.
Cornucopia perform Appalachian
Step Clogging and British Clog Dancing to a variety of American, Irish and
British acoustic folk music (jigs, reels and hornpipes). The dancers are
energetic performers who are entertaining to watch and their band (The
Shady Grove String Band) is great to listen to (on a good day).
Cwmni Gwerin Pontypŵl
Cwmni Gwerin Pont-y-Pŵl is a Welsh folk dance team
aiming to keep alive the culture and tradition of Welsh music and dance.
They dance at displays and festivals, not only in Wales and the rest of
the United Kingdom but also in Europe, where they have links with other
traditional dance groups.
They are a small friendly group and are always looking for new members,
both musicians and dancers, experienced and inexperienced. They have great
fun whilst maintaining the Welsh folk tradition.
They meet in
New Panteg Rugby Club, New Road, New Inn NP4 0PZ every Tuesday at 8.15
pm. Why not come and join them, or come along one evening to see what it
is all about?
Foxs Morris started in the summer of 1999, when a
group of friends in the village of Cookley, near Kidderminster in
Worcestershire, 93 miles from Newport, got together with a mutual interest
in the tradition of folk dance and music. This small group were all
members of 'the Friends of Cookley School' or F O C S - hence FOCS Morris.
After much confusion over our name, particularly its unfortunate
occasional mispronunciation, it was changed to FOXS Morris, spelt F O X
S which still causes some confusion due to the S on the end without an E.
From a launch in September 1999, we quickly grew
and regularly perform at festivals and events through out the UK and
Europe - being the first morris side to dance at the Brandenburg Gate in
Berlin following reunification. The side has appeared on television
teaching David "The Hoff" Hasslehoff to morris dance!
Foxs has retained an inclusive attitude to
membership, everyone is welcome to join us, the emphasis being on
participation and fun - keeping local traditions alive. We feel our ethos
is very true to the historical basis of black-face Welsh Border Morris
Gwerinwyr Gwent was formed in 1976 by eight people
from the Gwent area who were interested in reviving the tradition of Welsh
folk dancing. The name of the team can be translated as "folk-people of
They perform dances which vary from slow, courtly
dances to the faster fair dances and also include clog dances. Since
theior formation, members of the team have taken part in several
eisteddfods and also in festivals, both in Wales and overseas. As a result
of this they have hosted many foreign teams on their visits to Wales. Our
recent trips abroad took us to Denmark in 2009, and Finland at the
beginning of July 2010. They were also invited to Latvia, and some of the
team went there to perform at the Lubana festival in 2011.
They dance just for pleasure, although they take
part in festivals and demonstrations both in Wales and Europe. This year
they will again be performing at the Tredegar House Folk Festival and some
of them will be hosting dancers from overseas. This leads to invitations
to dance in their countries. Gwerinwyr Gwent are well known for
organising twmpaths and Noson Lawen evenings; the charges for these
depends on the time involved and the distances travelled.
Theu are always seeking new members, and either
beginners or experienced dancers are very welcome. Practice night is
Thursday 8-10pm at the Graig Community Hall, Bassaleg, NP10 8LG opposite
the Ruperra Arms. Just come along, or ring 01495 271953 for more details.
Dancing is fun; it’s exercise but you don’t have to be superfit to do
it….give it a try! For more information click the Recruitment button.
Isca Morris were formed in 1976 by three
experienced dancers taking their name from the Roman Fortress of the
Second Augustan Legion which once stood on the site of the town of
Caerleon in the old county of Gwent in South East Wales, UK. They wear
the national colours of Wales (red, white and green) and the kit includes
a red sash on which is mounted a Roman helmet badge.
Their dancing season usually extends from May 1st (when they dance at dawn
in the Roman Amphitheatre at Caerleon) to about mid-September, every
Wednesday evening, at a variety of real ale pubs across Newport, Torfaen
and Monmouthshire. They can also be seen on some weekends during the
summer in various parts of this country and abroad.
Isca Morris have danced at many different types of event, ranging from
Barn Dances and Folk Clubs to Fetes and larger Folk Festivals and have
appeared on television and radio on several occasions.
Jahawir Middle Eastern Dance Club was founded in
2002 by Laila Ajbar. It is the only group in South Wales performing
‘Tribal Style’ dances. The group performs traditional and modern dances
from all over the Middle East, North Africa and Asia. The group sources
all its own music and creates its own choreographies and costumes
Kemysk cornish dancers
Kemysk, meaning ‘mixture’ in the Cornish language,
are a group of friends from the length and breadth of Cornwall who perform
Cornish music and dance. Their flair and passion for Cornish culture is
reflected in their energetic style. Their costumes are black and gold;
colours which can be found on the banner and coat of arms of the Duchy of
Originally formed for a one off to tour to
Festival and the
Interceltqiue in Lorient, Brittany in summer 2010, they decided they
were having way too much fun to leave it there. They perform regularly at
local events such as the St Ives September Festival, Lowender Peran Celtic
Festival, Cornwall Folk Festival and Golowan Festival. They have also
travelled further a-field to the London for the ‘Kernow in the City’ St
Piran’s day event, the South Bank Centre’s ‘Festival of Britain’, and
represented Cornwall at Yn Chruinnaght festival on the Isle of Man and
Cwlwm Celtaidd festival in Wales.
The team greatly look forward to their second trip
to Tredegar House Folk Festival, where they met so many lovely new friends
and sampled some excellent Welsh cider last year!
Moonshine Appalachian dancers
Appalachian step dancing from the hills of South
Somerset and North Dorset
Currently they have 8 dancers; Frances, Julia,
Debs, Jed, Andy, Jayne, Francis and Nichola,
and 4 musicians; Henry, Rob, Richard and Dave.
They formed about three years ago and practice on
Wednesday Evenings at Ash nearr Yeovil. Most of them either danced or
played for various Morris, clog and step teams
O'Donnell School of Irish Dancing
are a group of mixed ages from the Cardiff and Newport areas. A lot of
time not only goes into the learning of the steps but also their
appearance and I am sure you will appreciate their beautiful costumes as
well as their dancing. They are regular visitors to the festival.
Whilst Irish Dancing can be
very competitive, with competitions (Feisanna) ranging from their own
class Feis through to local 'Wales and the West Feis' and on to National
and International Championships, the O'Donnell School of Irish Dancing
believes that whatever your own personal asperations, be it the next World
Champion or to just learn something new and keep fit along the way, it
should be FUN.
For more information, visit their
Shoostring are a dynamic and energetic dance group
who are sure to amaze you with their synchronised and unique approach to
Appalachian dancing. The side choreograph all their own dances, bringing
to life the toe tapping rhythms of American Bluegrass music performed by
the fantastic Shoostring Band. Shoostring have performed at many
events and folk festivals, including Newport's own Tredegar House,
Wadebridge, Chippenham and Pontardawe. They have also toured County Cork
in Southern Ireland.
Strictly Clog was formed in 2010
by three well established clog dance friends who wanted to take clog
dancing back to basics with minimum choreography and more emphasis on the
partnership with the music.
They have since performed at
Beverley, Chippenham, Bromyard and Whitby folk festivals, as well as the
annual Skipton Clog Fest and other local events.
WIDDERS MORRIS (Chepstow)
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Described as 'the Punk Rockers
of Morris' or 'Drinkers with a dance problem' The Widders dance mainly for
fun and for the pleasure of knowing they are helping to keep a great dance
tradition alive in South Wales.
Widders dance traditional and
contemporary Border Morris Dances and in order to continue in the
tradition they write dances about local people and their work. Their name
and motto comes from the infamous Black Widow spider. 'Feared
throughout the land', they are nice people really! They hope you all enjoy
with caller Dave Parsons
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Juice originated in the 70s as Juice of Barley when
Jenny and Gil Kilbride started their Ceilidh band. At the time their boys
Danny, Bernard and Gerard were playing punk music for no fee. The idea of
playing for money, even folk music, seemed very attractive and slowly but
surely the boys were hooked, bringing with them their electric bass player
(Dean) and forcing him to play the upright bass.
Youthful beauty took over from age when the parents retired and with
various additions (and subtractions!). The modern day Juice line-up is
fronted by Bernard KilBride (fiddle) with melodic support from Imogan
O'Rourke (flute), Daniel KilBride on guitar, Dean Ryan on bass and Dave
Danford on drums and percussion.
Regular support comes from a host of guest musicians including Stacey
Blythe (keyboard & accordion) and Gerard KilBride (fiddle).
The band's caller has been the legendary Dave Parsons for more years than
he would care to remember!