The world premiere of Tylwyth, a major new play by Daf James

29 Oct 2019

Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru and Sherman Theatre are proud to announce that they will be co-producing the world premiere performances of Daf James’s new play Tylwyth which will open at Sherman Theatre before touring to theatres across Wales.

Tylwyth is a witty and compelling new play that reunites the much-loved characters from the award-winning Llwyth, ten years on from that Welsh-language cultural phenomenon. Taking an irreverent look at love, family and friendship, it is a provocative commentary on contemporary Welsh life, following a group of gay friends living in Cardiff.

Tylwyth sees the return of Simon Watts, Danny Grehan and Michael Humphreys to their original roles, alongside three new cast members that include Martin Thomas and Arwel Davies. The play will be directed by Arwel Gruffydd, Artistic Director of Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru and the original director of Llwyth.

Daf James is an award-winning playwright, screenwriter, composer, performer and Sherman Theatre Associate Artist. Llwyth – Daf’s first full-length play – established him as one of the most exciting dramatists working in Wales. His current theatre work includes On the Other Hand, We're Happy produced by Paines Plough and Theatr Clwyd; he is also part of the 2019 BBC TV Drama Writers’ Programme. Daf said: “Llwyth was such an important play for me, both personally and politically. I never dreamed that it would get the response it did, enjoy such longevity and end up in Taipei! Since the play, Welsh and gay politics have changed a lot; as have I, since becoming a dad. So I felt compelled to write a second part to Llwyth, responding to some of those changes. Especially as Llwyth’s characters have continued to live and grow in my imagination since they left the stage. Tylwyth is a personal chronicle, but it’s also part of a wider cultural narrative that continues to evolve. Everyone has their story. It’s truly an honour to have the opportunity to share mine with fans of the original play as well as with new audiences.”

Arwel Gruffydd, Artistic Director of Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru and director of Tylwyth, said: “I’m delighted that we will be co-producing once more with the Sherman Theatre, as it was during my time as an Associate Director at the Sherman that I first directed Llwyth, ten years ago. Of all the theatre productions I’ve directed, Llwyth, undoubtedly, is the one that has had the most impact and the one that had the most amazing response. It was a turning point in my own career, and one too for Welsh-language theatre, it could be said. I can’t wait to get back into the rehearsal room with these wonderful characters that Daf has created, and to share some of their most recent exploits with audiences across Wales. Tylwyth celebrates and challenges contemporary Welsh identity, and does so, as did Llwyth, with a tonnes of laughter and with joyous and unexpected use of music, but also by taking the audience on emotional roller-coaster ride. Hold on to your hats!”

Julia Barry, Executive Director of Sherman Theatre, said: “We are thrilled to be revisiting our partnership with Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru to co-produce and tour Tylwyth, by Daf James. Daf, who is one of the Sherman’s Associate Artists, has written an extraordinary play that looks at the universal issues facing contemporary society in Wales today, viewed through the lens of this group of friends who we were first introduced to ten years ago. As with Llwyth, this will be a significant addition to the canon of Welsh-language plays and we are very much looking forward to sharing it with audiences across Wales.”

The tour will visit venues across Wales during March and April 2020. The full tour dates are shown below.

World Premiere:

Sherman Theatre, Cardiff 10 – 13 March 2020

The Tour:

Galeri, Caernarfon 17 + 18 March 2020

Aberystwyth Arts Centre 20 + 21 March 2020

Ffwrnes, Llanelli 24 March 2020

Hafren, Newtown 26 March 2020

Theatr Mwldan, Cardigan 28 March 2020

Pontio, Bangor 31 March + 1 April 2020

Theatr Clwyd, Mold 3 + 4 April 2020

Tylwyth is performed in Welsh. Non Welsh speakers and learners can follow the play throughout with English surtitles at all performances at Sherman Theatre. Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru’s Sibrwd language access app – will also be available to guide the audience through the story, whatever their level of fluency in Welsh at all performances.

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