Cyrff Ystwyth was established in 1988 and has managed to produce public performance consistently since then. The membership of the group has changed over time, as has the remit of the work and the context we work in.
‘Psychedelia’ (2011) by Edward Wadsworth
‘Work’ (2010) by Adrian Jones
‘Brighton Beach' (2009) by Edward Wadsworth
Organising a project can mean a large amount of work prior to beginning with participants. Below are a few examples of what was necessary before starting to make work on Capel.
Despite working in the University we still need to foster and develop external supportive relationships. Canolfan Padarn is the Ceredigion Social Services Day provision for people with learning disabilities and Margaret needs supportive relationships with Key Workers of Service Users who are in Cyrff Ystwyth. The Independent Living organisations are complex and varied and much work is required to liaise with Key Workers in this sector who support people outside of statutory provision. Each person has a different arrangement and different organisations offer this support. As such, it can be unclear who is supporting whom and how to contact them. This is a constant aspect of working with Cyrff Ystwyth.
Capel was performed in the rural village of Bronant, choreographer Adrian Jones’s home. Every week Margaret travels from Aberystwyth to bring him to work and takes him home again. This is a commitment of energy, time and money. Cyrff Ystwyth is not funded and Adrian has no other way of coming to do his work.
In order to ensure that the work could happen in Bronant, Margaret had to seek various permissions: from the Methodist community who use the site for their meetings, the private owner of the chapel itself and, via the Deacon/Secretary of the Methodist congregation, seek permissions to work in the graveyard. Additionally, neighbours close to the chapel received letters and where possible, Margaret talked with them about the project. The pub became a focal point for both warmth and food and a place for audiences and performers at the end of the evening performances. All of this needed prior arranging.
As a research project whose participants are considered to be vulnerable, Margaret has to go through a rigorous and lengthy process of application and presentation to the University Ethics and Integrity Committee before any work can take place. She is required to maintain certain rules and principles of action throughout any project and with the use of materials generated through that project into the future. All participants go through an in depth ‘consent to research’ procedure prior to beginning. People with learning disabilities are taken through a specially designed procedure specifically to ensure they understand what they are agreeing to or refusing. Here, colleagues in Canolfan Padarn are key, as they support this process. All these materials and the processes are scrutinised by the University committee before permission to proceed is given.