At the directors weekly meeting with the staff, we go over our daily activities so we know how much we have accomplished and how much is left to do for the festival preparation. I have to give updates for my Educational Theatre in Nepal’s office about my overall work so far. In addition, one interesting task is I have to prepare to write ‘Welcome’ in different 24 scripts for our delegates who are represented here at Arod Goch, Averyswarth Wales.
I got an opportunity to speak on Radio Bronglais, Frequency: 87.8 L-RSL FM. Radio Bronglais is a hospital radio station, transmitting from the grounds of Bronglais Hospital in Wales. The station began broadcasting in 1970 and is one of the oldest hospital radio stations in the United Kingdom. I had the privilege to join my friends Gwion and Grant to discuss our responsibilities for the festival. Gwion handles website details and social network for Agor Drysau Opening Doors 2019. He spoke about the different festival performances and about all the delegates who are coming for the festival. Grant is a volunteer, who is doing several different jobs for the preparation and the staging of the festival. I spoke about myself, my work and my experiences here in Wales as well as being a part of the festival.
I have had some previous radio experiences back home in Nepal. One particular time I spoke about displaced, traumatic and psychologically depressed children issues. It was in Sindilu district Radio Sindhuli, during our children drama tour. I spoke about why these performances were only for children and the situations they were dealing with. For example, why are kids so depressed after earthquakes how long might it influence their lives? Why theatre performances can have an impact on their ability to talk about the problems they face every day with people who will listen and lend a helping hand. Therefore, through art performances, we were able to succeed in helping to entertain and educate the children of Nepal. I had the opportunity to visit six districts devastated by earthquakes. During these visits, we went to schools, community centers and encouraged parents to join in to speak about their children’s health and wellbeing. Our first priority was doing drama performances. We would often use expressive art methods, musical gatherings, dancing programs, story writing activities, storytelling activities and picnics where we can at least talk with the children in an informal setting. Performing dramas for children is a really nice and effective way to relate with them.
After the radio talk, I had to go back and finish my ‘Welcome’ writing words on the Arod Goch blackboard. During this writing exercise, I found the Arabic writing language was a little hard for me. That day I waited for one of our Syrian volunteers Wael to help me. The next day I went into the town of Aberystwyth and asked some people around the town to help me with this endeavor. Luckily, plenty of people from Syria and Tunisia came by and they were excited to help us write in the Arabic language. Finally, I finished my ‘Welcome’ writing task by using 24 different languages and later Gwion included 3 more languages. So in total 27 different languages had been written on the Arod Goch entrance board. This truly shows the meaning of ‘Welcome’.
Words by Sunaina Panthy