The annual weekend festival/workshop BEAM – The Big Experiment /
Yr Arbrawf Mawr – is back in Carmarthen from September 1 – 3. Organised by trac, (the folk development organisation for Wales, the event offers a fantastic weekend for young and old, and everyone from beginners to advanced musicians.
BEAM 2017 offers a grand weekend packed with music, dance and song, this year featuring special guests Calan. There will be nearly 30 hours of tuition and activities,
including mixed-instrument groups, songs, clogging, taster workshops, concerts, a twmpath, films and sessions. Improve Your Technique, experiment with unfamiliar
instruments, songs and dance styles, and make new friends at the same time. The evening events and afternoon workshops are open to the public.
Tutors include Calan multi-instrumentalist Patrick Rimes, who will be leading the advanced instruments classes, with the band’s other fiddle player, Angharad Jenkins, and Guto Dafis leading workshops for intermediate level players. Aidan Sheehan will be taking the Foundation group, while Arfon Gwilym returns to lead the song strand.
Bethan Rhiannon will teach clogging at intermediate to advanced level, with a separate clog class for beginners and refreshers with Tudur Phillips. Gwerin Iau! Young folkies (aged seven to ten) have their own morning group this year with Sioned Webb, and Catrin Morris offering an afternoon group for themtoo. (Under-16s will need to be accompanied by an adult if they are coming for the weekend.)
Afternoon workshops are free to participants on the Big Experiment; they are open to the public, too, at the bargain price of only £5.
• Welsh Summer Carols with Arfon Gwilym;
• Instrumental ensemble workshop with Calan’s Patrick Rimes;
• ClogFit! with Tudur Phillips;
• Fiddle special – bowing and ornamentation with Calan’s Angharad Jenkins;
• Social Folk Dance – the dances of Pat Shaw, with Eirlys Phillips;
• Arranging tunes for a group, with Calan’s Sam Humphreys;
• Add Cajun spice to yourtunes, with Aidan Sheehan;
• Love, Death and Trains: Welsh narrative songs with Guto Dafis;
• Rhythm patterns for your tunes, with Calan’s Sam Humphreys;
• Harp workshop, with Sioned Webb;
• Clogging for all – have a go!
• Songwriting with Huw Williams
• A World of Tunes – for harps, for all, with Calan’s Alice French;
• Instant harmonica with Aidan Sheehan;
• Song session with Calan’s Bethan Rhiannon.
For more information, see The Listings pages in FolkWales Online Magazine. Grateful thanks to the Pembrokeshire Traditional Folk Network Newsletter!