Wales has long been home to many culturally and ethnically diverse communities that have continued to influence and shape Welsh art and music. Historically, Welsh artists of colour have faced prejudice and discrimination that has impeded them reaching mainstream recognition. Based in Cardiff Bay, one of Wales’ most culturally rich and diverse areas, Tŷ Cerdd is committed to bringing the spotlight Welsh artists of colour from across the nation, and empowering them through all stages of their career.
Under the umbrella of Music and Race in Wales Tŷ Cerdd is driving forward a strategy to ensure that artists of colour are represented, included and supported across our programme.
Music Industry 101 – an ongoing series, led by people of colour, of training / support / information events for music creatives (in partnership with FOCUS Wales and Forté Project, and with support from PRS Foundation)
CoDi Cân – commissioning five young (under-26) music-creators of colour to write and record Welsh-language songs with music videos – mentoring by Tumi Williams and Lily Beau (in partnership with National Eisteddfod)
Affricerdd commissions – commissioning 10 artists of colour to write songs in any language, 5 of which will be choreographed (in collaboration with Sub-Sahara Advisory Panel and National Dance Company Wales)
Music and Race in Wales – the programme so far:
AUGUST - NOVEMBER 2020
During 2020 – with support from ACW stabilisation funding – Tŷ Cerdd convened a series of online conversations about Music and Race in Wales, in collaboration with Privilege Café (an inspirational discussion-space created during COVID by campaigner / change-maker Mymuna Soleman).
Hosted by Tumi Williams (musician, workshop leader, Tŷ Cerdd board member) and Mymuna Soleman, the events created a safe and honest space for sharing of lived-experience, learning and discussions of barriers and solutions.
DECEMBER 2020 to MARCH 2021
The exploration and discussion continued, with funding support from Arts Council of Wales’s Sharing Together scheme.
Led by Dionne Bennett, Tumi Williams and Mymuna Soleman, the project took forward the work started in the series of online conversations with artists and creatives of colour.
Dionne and Tumi worked with us to develop conversations with sector organisations cross-genre, while we partnered with Mymuna Soleman on a series of discussions with grass-roots / community organisations, including focus groups and the creation of case studies. > PAST EVENTS
APRIL 2021 onwards
Alongside the ongoing strategic commitment to enabling, supporting and working with more artists of colour, a number of tarteged strands of activity have emerged:
Sgwrs #1: What does a creative artist in Wales look like?
Speakers: Yamsin Begym' Oort Kuiper and Ngaio
Sgwrs #2: Is education making Welsh music white?
Speakers: Louis Gray, Dionne Bennett, Paula Gardiner and Rachel Kilby
Sgwrs #3: How is programming impacting on our artists and audiences?
Speakers: Njabulo Madlala, Toks Dada, Cat Roberts and Kaptin Barrett
Sgwrs #4: How can we effect change through talent development? (In partnership with FOCUS Wales / Out of FOCUS)
Speakers: Benji Wild, Laura Lewis-Paul, Cat Roberts and Kaptin Barrett
Sgrws #5: What’s the picture outside the cities? (In collaboration with Aberystwyth Arts Centre)
Speakers: Sizwe Chitiyo, Kirk Holland and Simmy Singh
Sgwrs #6: How can we celebrate and support intersectionality?
Speakers: Baluji Shrivastav OBE, Eadyth; E11ice and Monique Bux