‘Myrddin’ was poet to a Welsh king. In 573, at a battle near Carlisle, the king was killed and Myrddin went mad. In his madness, he acquired the gift of prophesy and lived as a wild man in the Galloway Forest, talking to the birds and the beasts, his apple tree and his little pig. In the twelfth century this character was recast as Merlin, King Arthur’s wizard.
The Real Merlin Project is a Knockengorroch commission which builds on our 2018 Oran Bagraidh project to create new music inspired by the truth behind the myth – the character of ‘Myrddin’ in Welsh, ‘Lailoken’ in Scottish, and ‘Suibhne’ / Sweeney in Irish.
The project deepens links between established and progressive traditional artists in the four nations whilst revealing fascinating mythology about South West Scotland, where Knockengorroch Festival takes place.
Lorcán Mac Mathúna
The artists are Gwyneth Glyn and Twm Morys from Wales, Lorcán Mac Mathúna from Ireland, Maeve Mackinnon from Scotland and Andy May from Northumberland, England.
Our cross border project delves into myth and poetry to inspire new work, based around ‘Hen Ogled’ the ‘Old North’ (currently Galloway and N England) from which a large part of Welsh/British mythology comes.
The artists will collaborate online before performing the work live in their 4 respective countries, premiering at Knockengorroch Festival in our 25th Year.