From: The Western Morning News
A playwright, choirmaster, archivist, archaeologist and St Piran campaigner are among 23 people from across the world who will be initiated as Cornish bards at next month’s Gorsedh ceremony in Torpoint.
Anna Murphy, Stephen Lawry, Tamsin Mallett, Caradoc Peters and Colin Retallick will be invited to take their place in the circle of some 300 bards.
Gorsedh Kernow, which exists to protect and promote Cornwall’s unique culture, each year selects a small number of new bards, following nominations from existing members. The results of the selection process, which is conducted in private and does not allow any canvassing, were revealed yesterday.
Announcing the honours, Grand Bard Maureen Fuller said: “Our ceremony always provides a spectacle of colour with the blue robes of the bards and the myriad of banners from the many Cornish organisations that come together to celebrate our Cornish culture.”
Anna Murphy is well-known in literary circles for her work as a writer and performer with Kneehigh Theatre, as well as a number of other theatre companies. She is also a regular contributor to schools projects and several of her plays have been broadcast on BBC Radio 4. Stephen Lawry is musical director of Mousehole Male Voice Choir and has been instrumental in leading the ensemble to numerous triumphs in recent years. Tamsin Mallett is head archivist at the Cornwall Records Office, Caradoc Peters has contributed greatly to our knowledge of Cornish archaeology, while Colin Retallick – seen in the role of St Piran each year on the dunes above Perranporth – has worked tirelessly for St Piran Trust and helped secure permission for an excavation at the saint’s oratory.
The growing interest and activity around the Cornish language is reflected in the number of people recognised this year for their work in its promotion and stud. Music, drama and cultural heritage is also well represented among the new bards, as is the work done by new bards from Brittany and from the Cornish Diaspora, including Australia and New Zealand.
The bardic names of all 23 initiates will be made known at the ceremony in Thanckes Field at Torpoint on Saturday September 6. The public are welcome to attend the event, which will also include exhibitions, concerts, stalls, church services and other activities as part of the Gorsedh Kernow Esedhvos Festival.
“We are especially proud this year because the Government has recognised the Cornish as a distinct group under the Council of Europe’s Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities,” said the Grand Bard. “This recognition will give Cornish people the respect they deserve and the confidence to stand tall and be themselves, taking their place in the multi-cultural society that is Britain today.”
New Bards for 2014
For further information visit gorsedhkernow.org.uk
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