The Manx Music, Speech and Dance Festival, supported by homebuilder Dandara and better known as the Guild, was represented by two of its 2017 winners at the North West Regional Championships of the British and International Federation of Festivals recently.
Ruth Tickle, winner of the 2017 Cleveland Medal, awarded to the Festival’s finest singer, and John Cashen, winner of the Adult Spoken Word and Manx Dialect classes, travelled to Preston to take part in a day of competition, recreating their winning performances in music and drama. Winners from other festivals around the North West region also took part, with the winner then invited to the National Final.
Whilst neither Ruth or John was named a finalist, Ruth said: ‘It was a wonderful day and it was great to see and hear what happens at other festivals around the North West. The Guild was clearly the oldest and largest of all the festivals represented. We did our very best to fly the Manx flag and we hope we have inspired other competitors to come to our Festival.’
The Guild is now looking forward to the 2018 Festival, which will be held between 20th and 28th April at the Villa Marina in Douglas, and the eagerly awaited syllabus is now available in outlets Island-wide. The syllabus details classes and requirements for competitors to begin their work and rehearsals, culminating in another showcase of the best of Manx talent at the 126th Festival next year.
Secretary of the Guild Dr Jacqueline Yates said: ‘A great deal of work is put into the preparation of the syllabus and performers anticipate seeing it every year. We then look forward to receiving entries in February, and very much hope that, once again, competitor numbers will rise as the popularity of the Guild continues to grow. We particularly hope to see greater numbers in our dance competitions which were recently introduced.
‘I’d also like to thank our title sponsor Dandara for its continued support, which has helped the Festival to grow and expand.’
Further details of the 2018 Manx Competitive Music, Speech and Dance Festival are available in the Festival Syllabus, which is free of charge and is available from outlets Island-wide.