My Body Welsh – A Rumination on Welsh National Identity

In a world where nationalism has become muddied by dangerous right-wing rhetoric, it is easy to forget about the metaphysical merit of searching for one’s own national identity. Often, it is a discovery laden with history, language, surprise and – most importantly – growth. Welsh national identity, too, is made particularly interesting  by the complicated amalgamation of Welsh and Anglo culture which has left Wales – particularly the South – iridescent. Despite this, the sense of community in Wales is as prominent as our valleys and our stories. Pontio, Invertigo Theatre Company’s and The Conker Group’s newest offering, My Body Welsh, is a play that concerns itself with these issues of national identity, and more with creative aplomb:

“MY BODY WELSH is a playful, part-bilingual, one-man mystery adventure. Weaving stories, histories, sounds and language, performer Steffan Donnelly transports his audience into a slippery world of small-town myth-making. Accompanied by a live soundscape artist creating sounds both with and in front of the audience, the show creates community in its telling, leaving us wondering the extent to which national identity is built upon stories.”

The play weaves its way through the infamous streets of Llanfair­pwllgwyngyll­gogery­chwyrn­drobwll­llan­tysilio­gogo­goch and into the minds behind small town myth-making and culture building. The play asks if “There’s more to being Welsh than having the accent, isn’t there?”, and it’s up to you to attend and find out the answer. The play is on tour at the moment and will be arriving in Cardiff at Chapter Arts on the 13 / 14 of January. This looks like a real treat, so be sure to grab your tickets for My Body Welsh here at Chapter, if you fancy it.

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Roath Park short film, La Volonte, by Dylan Mears

Before Christmas we were contacted by a filmmaker called Dylan Mears. He’s currently doing his A-levels, but wanted to share a little film he’d made. I watched it and thought it would make the perfect inspiration for you to get outside and get active after Christmas indulgences!

The film is mostly set in Roath Park. Here’s what Dylan says about it:

“I’m from Cardiff, and since the age of three I’ve loved going to Roath Park Lake, hence why the majority of the film was shot there. I made the film after a very testing time of GCSEs, and my main objective with the project was to motivate people and offer the message that you take out what you put in this life.”

“I’m currently studying AS Economics, English, and Psychology at Fitzalan. Inspiration comes from everywhere and anywhere but mainly the natural beauties such as the dawn and dusk, and just the varying propensities in everyday people.”
Well good luck Dylan – and all of you budding filmmakers, writers, artists, airplane pilots, army cadets, teachers, opera singers – whatever it is you want to do, get out there and do it!
For my part (in case you think these are empty words), my life resolutions are to finish the g*& d%$&* novel I’ve been flapping about with the past two years and to blog more on my personal blog. And stop eating so much shite and exercise more. And call my parents more.
Etc.
Good luck to us all!
Peas
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Find our more about Dylan and his work:
la-volonte-dylan-mears
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