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The Mycelium Storytelling Hub

Developing a new generation of storytellers –  a new collaboration between freelancers and organisations supported by Arts Council Wales’ Connect and Flourish fund.

Beyond the Border – Wales’ International Storytelling Festival together with partners from the National Eisteddfod, Menter Iaith, People Speak Up, Citrus Arts, Head4Arts and Theatre Soar are working together in an exciting new collaboration to ensure the future of the storytelling sector in Wales, with funding from the Arts Council of Wales’ Connect and Flourish fund.

The Mycelium Story Hub is a network of organisational and freelancer partners, committed to sharing practice & nurturing less frequently heard stories from across Wales’ diverse communities. The model is inspired by nature’s mycelium networks and includes support for producers and a new role of contemporary Cyfarwyddion.

Contemporary Cyfarwyddion will help uncover and share the stories of communities in which they are based for a twelve month residency. The role of the Cyfarwydd is directly inspired by older traditions of the Welsh Cyfarwydd; storytellers who captured and reflected what was happening in their communities, offering subtle guidance though the stories they told.  Each Cyfarwydd had an apprenticeship, and went on to become a highly respected member of society, travelling and bringing back news to the courts, reflecting the society of their time.

The Mycelium Hub will also include producers, either paired with Cyfarwyddion to work in partnership in a particular community or developing other programmes or projects, based on areas of priority or potential.

The first year of the project is prioritising Welsh language storytelling and two geographically specific partnerships, one with People Speak Up in Carmarthenshire, Beyond the Border’s festival’s new home, and a second which will be launched in the Rhondda, including partners Citrus Arts, Head 4 Arts and Theatre Soar. There is shared interest in reflecting the resilience, history, politics, dialects and characters of specific communities, finding ways to ensure these communities’ stories are nurtured and celebrated.

Calling Producers and Creatives in Wales

The Mycelium Storytelling Hub are now recruiting for its Year 2 job roles starting in January 2023 until January 2024.

We have a team of Cyfarwyddion and producers across working across Wales already, and we are now looking for the next round of creatives to join our work. We are really keen to hear how you might bring people together through different styles and ways of storytelling.

DEADLINE 10 OCTOBER 2022 5pm

More info on our job pages

Meet the Hub Team
Meet the Hub team members from across Wales and what activities they have coming up…

Meet the Hub Team

Mair has been a storyteller for the past twenty years, concentrating on presenting stories, songs, and the traditional practices of Wales.
Born and raised in Meirionnydd she works the length and breadth of Wales and further afield, and since Covid-19 has been presenting aspects of the ancient culture through new technology.

As part of the Mylecium Storytelling Hub she will be working in Mawddwy and Mawddach: the south part of Meirionnydd county. This area encompasses the south of the Mawddach Valley, Bro Dysynni, Dyffryn Dulas, and the northern banks of the Dyfi River and Cwmwd Mawddwy.
Email: mair.ifans@btinternet.com

Jo Munton
Based in Cemmaes, Gwynedd
Jo Munton is a story telling puppeteer from Mid Wales who has performed from Spain to Siberia, from Ynys Mon to Bridgend.

Her latest online show, “The Tales I was Told Tell” was as part of an international puppeteer residency, and then supported by Moving Parts Newcastle Puppet Festival.

She is a passionate Welsh learner but has found the process slow. “Being dyslexic, I know my progress might be slower than most. I’ve repeated the same course a few times to really allow the learning to settle”.

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Ydych chi’n chwilio am rywbeth Newydd wrth ddysgu Cymraeg?

Hoffech chi brofi antur a datblygu sgiliau creadigol yn y Gymraeg?

Dyma’ch cyfle, dewch ar daith I ddod yn adroddwr storiau eich straeon chi.

Cyfres o weithdai, trwy gydol y flwyddyn, ar-lein ac wyneb I wyneb.
Dim Angen profiad o gwbl.

darganfodstoriau@gmail.com

Darganfod stori mewn iaith a iaith mewn stori.

Dyma ni ar ein cam cyntaf yn ein taith I adrodd storiau:

Gorffennaf 10 – Rhehifford Llangollen
Gorffennaf 17 – Canolfan glan yr afon, Y Drenewydd
Gorffennaf 24 Casnewydd / Seid Tin

Neu ar-lein

https://forms.gle/36Y9HhxUcccnugQp7

Working in Neath Port Talbot/Merthyr/Rhondda Cynon Taff

Cathy was born in Glynneath.

After studying Fine Art and Independent Film Production at degree and post graduate level she began her career working as an assistant director for film and television.

She joined the theatre programming department at Chapter Arts Centre in 2000 and for the next 20 years played a key role at the organisation, developing, programming and producing projects in theatre, music, dance and experimental performance including annual international live art festival Experimentica.

She currently works freelance as a Creative Producer working closely and collaboratively with independent artists and like-minded organisations.

Helping artists to make things happen is at the centre of all her work.

Email: cathyeleriboyce@googlemail.com

Activities – coming soon

Working in Mid Wales – Brecon to Wrexham, Aberystwyth to Newtown.

With a background in History of Art and having worked with community centred art projects and organisations, Rhian is excited to be working and expanding a storytelling network in Mid-Wales, listening to tales of new and old, in Welsh and in English and to create a programme of events and workshops to explore stories of the everyday, myths and folklore with people of all ages and levels of storytelling experience.

The Mycelium Storytelling Hub producer wants to hear from you!

As part of our new Mycelium hub we are keen to hear what is already taking place in Wales and how we can support and develop a programme of storytelling. Rhian Davies is our producer covering mid wales and is looking to hold a short, informal networking session online to meet and learn more about the work and interests of local storytellers. As the storytelling programme develops, she would like to reach out to local storytellers in the first instance to include them in the project work and to celebrate artists in the area.
From Aberystwyth to Newtown, Brecon to Wrexham.

Email: daviesrj.97@gmail.com

Phil Okwedy – West Wales
Based in Tenby
Associate Cyfarwyddion in partnership with People Speak UP

Phil is a performance storyteller and myth-maker who draws deeply on his dual heritage and multiple cultures. He regularly performs in storytelling clubs and festivals across Wales, as well as at Kea Festival in Greece and Fabula Festival in Sweden.

His first book, Will & the Welsh Black Cattle, is a set of Welsh folktales that are woven together and framed around the mythology of the ancient cattle drovers.

Phil has recently been working with National Theatre Wales on Go Tell the Bees and was commissioned as part of Literature Wales’ Representing Wales, Developing Writers of Colour programme.

Deb Winter – West Wales
Associate Cyfarwyddion in partnership with People Speak UP

Deb Winter is a storyteller and a writer who performs across Wales and the UK. Deb was launched into story-telling by winning the ‘Yarn-spinner’ prize at Bristol Story Slam and was invited back with four new shows to Bristol Storyfest in 2016 -19.  In 2021 she won the Gwobr Esyllt Harker Award for Women Storytellers in Wales, jointly with musician/storyteller Ailsa Mair Fox. She founded and hosts Fishguard Storytelling/Straeon Gwaun.

As well as being a writer and storyteller, Deb worked for many years in the voluntary sector, leading training courses for volunteers, staff, trustees and service-users of charities. She specialised in confidence-building, communication skills, public speaking, training & group-facilitation skills.  She is known for running supportive workshops welcoming to all. Deb has led many Storytelling Skills/Improv workshops and also specialises in lively Creative Writing Workshops. Because of her voluntary sector background she brings the experience of working with vulnerable people into her work in the field of ‘applied storytelling’ as an Associate Storyteller with PeopleSpeakUp and Beyond the Border.

Currently, as part of her role as Cyfarwydd, Deb is creating new ‘green’ shows, inspired by a love of the wild and rising to the challenge of using storytelling to raise awareness of climate change, working on new stories about rising sea levels, deforestation and the impact of ‘fast fashion’,  in partnership with environmental groups.  She’s also creating links with local groups to promote the use of storytelling in the area of mental health and well-being, particularly for isolated and/or vulnerable people.

 

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