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Wales Arts Review 3.16



Wales Arts Review 3.16 is very excited to introduce our first ever rolling coverage of an ongoing event, as we launch Green Man Live. Over the next three days you can visit our Live Pages to read the latest reviews, comments, interviews and reflections from our team at this year’s Green Man Festival at the Glan Usk Estate in Powys. One of the UK’s most successful and beloved independent festivals, Green Man will this year be host to some great musical acts, including Neutral Milk Hotel, The Waterboys and Mercury Rev, as well as a wide array of new, up and coming bands, plus live comedy, films, art and brand new bespoke shows from National Theatre Wales and NoFit State. And we will be there, with the invaluable support of Arts Council Wales, to bring you all the news, views, and as much of the atmosphere as we can. So visit our Live Page here for all the latest via our rolling feed and/or keep up to date by following us on Twitter or Facebook.

You can also recap all of Friday’s highlights, including Shirley Collins, Green Man//Red Woman’s video diary and a look at what makes the Green Man Festival so alluring, here. Plus a review of Saturday’s rolling coverage, including Patrick Keiller, the fantastic Haikus of Francesca Kay, Neko Case and After Dark, can be found here. Here is Sunday’s, and final, instalment of our Green Man odyssey – from Hockeysmith to Mercury Rev – our team have endeavoured to capture the authentic roots of the festival.

Of course, 3.16 is also packed with our regular mix of essays, interviews and reviews from the arts and culture across Wales and beyond. This fortnight, we are proud to lead with Jenny Allan’s ‘Archwilio y Garnateg: a Welsh/South Indian Musical Odyssey’, which tells the story of an inspiring musical journey across cultures and continents.

As part of our continuing coverage of Dylan Thomas’ birth centenary, the distinguished Professor Walford Davies talks about the great man, on whom he is a world authority. This is the first in an important new series of interviews from Jasper Rees; himself a highly respected writer and Thomas devotee.

Managing Editor Phil Morris continues the focus on iconic Welsh cultural figures with ‘Five Films in the Life of Stanley Baker: An Appreciation’, inspired by Chapter Arts Centre’s ongoing retrospective and his own past critique of Zulu. Turning to things maritime – and going right back into medieval history – Hannah Lawson gives a fascinating insight into ‘The World of the Newport Ship’, first unearthed in 2002 from the muddy banks of the River Usk.

Our ongoing search for Wales’ Greatest Novel intensifies this fortnight, with Dylan Moore arguing both The Hiding Place by Trezza Azzopardi and The Withered Root by Rhys Davies eloquently into contention.

This year, the National Eisteddfod took place in Llanelli. The Wales Arts Review was on hand in the sharp-witted forms of Joao Morais and Elin Williams, who found much to comment on as well as to appreciate in a review of the National Open Exhibition and an Eisteddfod overview respectively.

The latest addition to our Fictional Map of Wales (published in association with the Rhys Davies Trust) comes from Richard Gwyn: The Reading is an enthralling new short story with a very unexpected twist. Richard also spoke with Fiction Editor John Lavin about his story, poetry, identity and much more.

Continuing our partnership with the Association for Welsh Writing in English, the Gregynog Papers, Emma Schofield examines a post-devolution shift in national literary and cultural identity in her cogently argued ‘Everything Must Change: Regenerating National Identity in Post-Devolution Anglophone Welsh Writing’.

In further literary and theatre reviews, Liam Nolan finds M. A. Oliver-Semenov’s Sunbathing in Siberia touchingly describes ‘a great love’ – albeit with caveats – whilst Adam Somerset finds an invaluable companion for summer travels in Wales: the 100 Places to See Before You Die by John Davies and Marian Delyth. Elin Williams was on hand to cast an eye on Elgan Rhys’ original production Llais/Voice, and Emma Schofield rounds us off with a look back at Chris Keil’s Flirting at the Funeral, ‘a tale of missed opportunities and lost love’.

Enjoy the issue – and don’t forget to visit our exciting rolling coverage of Green Man.


The Wales Arts Review gratefully acknowledges a grant from Arts Council Wales in support of our rolling coverage of Green Man.

Banner illustration by Dean Lewis

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