From Caernafon to Cardiff and from Whitland to Wrexham there will be an explosion of art and creativity amongst the over 50s in Wales during the merry month of May
More than 40 groups of older people throughout Wales are set to take part in this year’s Gwanwyn Festival of arts and creativity for older people.
The Wales wide festival, organised by Age Cymru, will this year feature activities ranging from challenging dance routines to film screenings, and from community weaving to an exhibition on memory, and everything in between during the month of May.
Now in its thirteenth year, the festival provides opportunities for older people to become involved in any number of artistic and creative activities. It also celebrates the opportunities that older age can bring about; a chance to learn and try new creative experiences, which is reflected in the name Gwanwyn – the Welsh word for springtime, whilst acknowledging lived experience.
Among the highlights of this year’s festival will be an exhibition from the Hearth Gallery at Llandough Hospital in the Vale of Glamorgan based on patients’ first memories. In Caerphilly older women will be making a short film of their dance routines called Girls on Film, while in Cardiff the Gentle/Radical Film club will be screening a film and hosting a discussion based upon the institution of marriage from a BAME perspective.
In Denbighshire, an inspirational artist will help a community to weave itself together by using this most ancient of crafts while in Carmarthenshire there will be aerial yoga as participants will be lifted circus-style into the air to perform their moves before being invited to lay in a colourful yoga hammock for a more calming experience.
Age Cymru’s Arts & Creativity Programmes Manager, Kelly Barr said: “The Festival is produced by inviting community groups to bid for small grants to help fund their event, so that we can ensure that a wide cross-section of older people, from the four corners of Wales, become involved in organising and participating in the festival.
“It also promotes the benefits of exploring creativity, developing a critical voice and participating fully in the artistic and cultural life of local communities across Wales, all of which is crucial to our well-being.
“Given the calibre of events, I suspect that this year’s festival is going to be one of our most successful to date with each group offering a unique and exciting opportunity to get involved.”