More than 1,000 school children have spent a week showcasing their native music, dance, and language at the Manx Folk Awards, at venues across the Isle of Man last month.
The event, organised by the Department of Education Sport and Culture and Culture Vannin included nearly 100 different classes, for children aged 3-18, over five action-packed days.
This year’s theme was ‘Manx calendar customs’ and a new class saw children deliver a short presentation in their native tongue on topics including Tynwald day, Hunt the Wren and even the naughty witch Tehi Tegi.
Other notable performances included a rousing performance of the national anthem by hundreds of children from different schools and a group harp performance of Auldyn River.
Class winners each received a highly coveted medal, as well as a certificate and book token.
A daily ‘Folktastic’ trophy and cash prize, sponsored by the Malcolm Scott Dickinson Charitable Trust, was also awarded to an outstanding performance on each day.
The winners were QE2 student Frank Joughin for his new composition 'Cape Breton' and for stepping in at the last minute to play fiddle with the Bree folk group, who were missing a member; Arbory School for their talented KS1 solo singers and choirs; Skeddan Jiarg KS2 dance couples for a particularly entertaining performance of Chyndaa yn Bwoailley; and Mannin Music for their support of all of the music classes throughout the whole festival.
Julie Edge MHK, Minister for Education, Sport and Culture, said:
‘I was delighted to attend and was thrilled to see so many children performing and celebrating Manx culture.’
Dr Chloë Woolley, Manx Music Development Officer for Culture Vannin said:
‘The Manx Folk Awards is a great showcase for the work going on in schools. It’s wonderful when you see the children enjoying themselves on stage, and feeling proud of the Isle of Man.’
Jo Callister, Advisory Teacher for the Manx Curriculum at DESC said:
‘Chloe and I have been bowled over by the enthusiasm, dedication and hard work from staff and pupils. We have been inundated with lovely feedback are proud that we are able to organise such a welcoming and inclusive event, where lots of young people performed for the first time.’
The DESC and Culture Vannin provide support to schools throughout the year by supplying Manx music resources, delivering music, dance and folklore workshops and providing soundtracks for dancing. Results, photos and films are available on Culture Vannin’s website.
Picture: Manx Folk Awards 2023 Skeddan Jiarg - Folktastic Winners (KS2 dance)