Ar Waith, ar Daith A Journey of Welsh Myth and Magic
Members of Aberdyfi Rowing Club, together with representatives from other rowing clubs around Wales, took part in a 10th birthday celebration for the Welsh Millennium Arts Centre in Cardiff on Saturday 12th September.
This celebration was organised by ‘Walk the Plank’- a company that create,
programme and produce creative outdoor performances and artworks - and as a lead up to the event, they put on a series of three training events around Wales for artistic practitioners.
The three events – the first in Caernarfon, loosely based on the‘fruits of the sea’, the second at Castell y Bere near Tywyn, based on the ‘fruits of the land’ and the third at Newport based on ‘fruits of the earth’, enabled artistic practitioners to come together and learn new skills culminating in a public performance at each venue.
The artistic talents were metaphorically being gathered in a cauldron of Welsh inspiration - “Awen“ - to take to Cardiff and the main event on September 12th brought together performers and artists from all over Wales in a magical night of music, dance, rowing, performance and
A team from Porthmadog rowed the whole way from Porthmadog to Cardiff, carrying a slate plaque to be presented to the Millennium Centre to mark the occasion. They arrived in Cardiff
the day before the event in good spirits after an eventful trip.
Twenty two teams of rowers from the rest of Wales joined them in Cardiff and came together on 12th September to row in to shore next to the Millennium Centre before taking part in a large procession together with coracles and children carrying paper lanterns in the shape of shells from the Caernarfon event.
Rowers representing Aberdyfi were Ian & Sandy Andrews, Rhian & Tom Jones and Nuala Dunn. At the end of the performance, the rowers all rowed back out to sea in the dark, carrying
flaming torches to take the flame of inspiration back to the rest of Wales.
Another Aberdyfi rowing club member- Des George - co-ordinated all the rowers during the event and organised the attachment system and the flaming torches. Nuala Dunn had also taken part in the Castell y Bere event and was in Cardiff to help with the set up a couple of days in
advance of the main event.
The whole evening spectacle was narrated by Shan Cothi and revolved round the story of the birth of Taliesin from the Mabinogion using artists, dancers, singers and children from the local community to tell the story in spectacular fashion.
All our rowers from Aberdyfi were proud to be part of the event .
Sandy Andrews said, “ Rowers from different clubs are normally competing against one another but this time there was a great sense of togetherness between all rowers from the various clubs which highlighted what a great rowing community we have throughout Wales. Our flag, showing a bell to represent Aberdyfi, is now in our rowing club shed ready to be used for other events.”
Nuala Dunn added, “This was a wonderful event to be part of and I felt proud to be one of the rowers representing Aberdyfi. It was an emotional experience walking right through an estimated crowd of twelve thousand people together with all the other clubs, and carrying our flags and oars. The fireworks were spectacular and it was a real team effort from all the Celtic longboats rowing together to the Millennium Centre and back across the bay with flaming torches aboard the boats.”
“It was a wonderful weekend and a fantastic experience.”