Exciting Workshops with Ruth Keggin at 2020 Convention in Plymouth, MA

NAMA Manx Cultural Workshops

Saturday / Jesarn, August 8, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at Hotel 1620

Failt erriu! Welcome! For the first time, NAMA is offering a full-day series of workshops on Manx culture, music, folklore, and language as part of its 2020 biennial convention. We’re excited to welcome Ruth Keggin, renowned Manx Gaelic singer, musician, and teacher, as our special guest and workshop leader.

Ruth is passionate about bringing Manx music and language to a wider audience. Her debut solo album, Sheear (‘Westward’) and second solo album Turrys (‘Journey) were released in 2014 and 2016. She has performed at major festivals including Celtic Connections in Glasgow.

These workshops will be educational and most importantly fun, with singing, dancing, and music, as well as an introduction to Manx Gaelic, the native language of Ellan Vannin, the Isle of Man. Whether you’re Manx, of Manx descent, or just interested in Gaelic and Celtic culture, these workshops are for you.

Friday, August 7 (evening):

Kiaull as Gaelg

If we can’t go to The Albert Hotel, Port St, Mary, let’s bring some of The Albert to us! With Kiaull as Gaelg — Music and Manx — we’ll do our best to replicate a Manx traditional music and Manx Gaelic session just as you’d find at The Albert in Port St. Mary on a Friday night. Musicians, bring your instruments and join us for a few tunes, or just come to sit back, listen, and enjoy the music. If you speak some Manx, this is the time to use it. And we’ll have a Manx pub quiz that you can complete and compete for prizes.

Saturday, August 8 (all day):

9 a.m. Manx Action Songs (All Ages)

Kickstart the day with a Manx Action Song workshop for all ages. In this playful music and movement workshop, you will learn a number of simple songs from the Isle of Man in English and Manx Gaelic, while engaging in movement games and activities that will keep your toes tapping as you learn! This workshop will be suitable for most ages, abilities, and mobility levels. No prior knowledge of the Manx language is required, and songs will be taught by ear.

10 a.m. Manx to the Max! Beginners’ Manx Language Workshop

Get to know your Manx lingo! In this introductory workshop you will learn some useful Manx Gaelic words and phrases. Find out how to introduce yourself and others in Manx, learn commonly used greetings, and be able to ask how your friends are doing. Though this workshop is particularly suitable for those with little or no knowledge of the Manx language, everyone is very welcome to join in! Bee keead milley failt erriu!

11 a.m. Manx Dance Workshop

Put a spring in your step with a joyous and sociable workshop, in which we will learn a number of simple traditional Manx dances that are often found at Ceilis in the Isle of Man, or performed by dance groups. Perfect for the whole family, everyone is welcome to this workshop, whether you have a dance partner in mind, or not! While an amount of mobility is necessary to practice these energetic dances, participants are free to take rest breaks as required, and all levels of dance ability are welcome to participate — whether you know Manx dances or not.

Lunch / Kirbyl 12 p.m.-2 p.m.

2 p.m. Folklore of the Isle of Man: The Manx Year (“Y Vlein Vanninagh”)

The Isle of Man has a wealth of unusual customs, traditions and practices connected to different times of the year. Often stretching back into a past shrouded in mystery of speculation, some of these practices strike to the heart of what makes the Isle of Man so special and unique. In this workshop, we will explore some of the calendar customs of the Island, enriching the learning experience with audio and visual presentations.

3 p.m. Sing a Song of Mannin: A Pocketful of Tunes from the Isle of Man

In this workshop, participants will learn a number of traditional and contemporary folk songs from the Isle of Man, with a mixture of songs in both Manx Gaelic and English. Learn to sing a wide range of repertoire, from haunting and beautiful Manx airs, to jaunty rhythmic ditties. Songs will be taught by ear in this workshop, but printed lyrics will be available to assist learning. Everyone is welcome to join in, and enjoy singing together!

4 p.m. Manx Instrumental Music Workshop

Round off the day with a rousing instrumental workshop, exploring traditional and contemporary tunes from the Isle of Man, the likes of which you might hear at a lively pub session, or Celtic music festival. A variety of melodies will be taught – from jigs and reels, to slow airs – along with background information about the tunes. All instrumentalists are welcome (please bring your own instruments) and, while tunes will be taught by ear, sheet music will be provided for anyone who would like to use it.