Friday 17 February 2012
Across three days, a week before World Book Day, over 1,200 local primary school pupils from Merthyr, Tredegar and Aberdare in south Wales will enjoy a comedy theatrical production based on The Troublesome Tudors and Sleazy Stuarts, a book in the Wicked Wales series, in the wonderful setting of Caerphilly Castle Banqueting Hall.
Shimli, a bilingual theatre-in-education company, will be presenting the show based on Catrin Stevens’s book, and pupils will see the pages brought to life before their very eyes. The interactive production will tell them what life was like in Wales during the reigns of the Tudor and Stuart monarchs – from the infamous pirate Captain Harri Morgan boiling people in hot oil, how to recognise a witch, strange old Welsh traditions, and the first translation of the Bible into Welsh. Following the performance, the children will ‘do battle’ as they learn the history and craft of being a medieval knight, and each pupil will be given a free copy of the book to mark the occasion.
Catrin Stevens, author of The Troublesome Tudors and Sleazy Stuarts, who lives in Swansea, said: 'These events are an excellent way to communicate with children that reading is fun and interesting and to get them involved. It will be great to see the children’s reaction as they watch my book come to life.'
The events are being organised by the Welsh Books Council with the support of Cadw and Waterstones, who are contributing the proceeds from the 5p carrier bag levy to support the World Book Day events. Will Williams of Waterstones said: 'It’s wonderful to be involved in such an inspiring campaign. We wanted the funds raised from the levy to be put to good use, and it’s great that they will now be helping to bring books to life for thousands of kids, as well as helping the environment.'
Delyth Humphreys, Head of the Children's Books and Reading Promotion Department at the Welsh Books Council, said: 'As World Book Day this year falls on 1 March, St David’s Day, we decided to base our flagship events on Welsh history – and what better setting could there be than Caerphilly Castle, the largest castle in Wales? As well as an original theatrical performance featuring many characters from Welsh history, the pupils will also get to meet a medieval knight who will teach them all about medieval chivalry, and they will be taken on a special tour of the castle’s defences. Our aim is to give each pupil an adventure in the castle and to inspire them to seek out other adventure stories in books. There is a buzz of excitement throughout the participating schools, with both pupils and staff looking forward eagerly to the events.'
Schools taking part in the events are as follows: Penywaun Primary School, Aberdare; St Aloysius Roman Catholic School, Goetre Primary School, Twynyrodyn Community School, Troedyrhiw Community Primary School and Ysgol Gymraeg Rhyd-y-Grug from Merthyr Tydfil, and Bryn Bach Primary School, St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Primary School, Glanhowy Primary School, Georgetown Primary School and Deighton Primary School from Tredegar. These schools have been selected from the designated Reading Communities in Wales, a scheme to promote reading and literacy in some of Wales’s Strategic Regeneration Areas.
World Book Day 2012 takes place on Thursday 1 March with many interesting events, activities and workshops taking place across Wales. To find out more please go to: http://bit.ly/worldbookday