Drama Medal awarded for play focussed on relationship between a 12-year-old neurodiverse boy and his mother
A play focussed on the relationship between a 12-year-old neurodiverse boy and his mother has won its author the coveted Drama Medal at the Llŷn and Eifionydd National Eisteddfod.
Cai Llewelyn Evans received his award on the stage of the Pafiliwn Mawr in a special ceremony.
The Drama Medal is presented for a stage play with no length restriction, that shows the most promise and has the potential to be developed further by working with a professional company.
The audience in the pavilion heard 26 writers submitted their plays and the adjudicators said Eiliad o Ddewiniaeth (A Moment of Wizardy) by Wasabi (Cai Llewelyn Evans’ nom de plume) was the play that feels the most complete and coherent.
Presenting the adjudication Steffan Donnelly said: “It’s sure and confident in its theatrical form with a clear climax and revelation that takes us on a complex and emotional journey. A simple story with a tight focus on the relationship between Ceri, a 12-year-old neurodiverse boy and his mother, Alys.
“The characters are well-rounded, and clearly a lot of thought has gone into building the characters and their relationship with each other. It’s great to see a neurodiverse main character – and it’s an extremely sensitive and believable portrayal.
“Ceri and Alys’ relationship is beautifully tender and intricate with occasional moments that bring a tear to the eye.
“The play has a clear audience of early teenagers, but there’s something for everyone in it too. The way Ceri comments on everything as a football pundit is a very effective way to reflect feelings and the voice of society. It’s a device that highlights otherisation and the pressure to fit in and examines the lies we tell each other and ourselves.
“Eiliad o Ddewiniaeth is a mischievous play, full of pathos that is most ready for the stage.
Congratulations to all the playwrights. After careful consideration and a lot of talking between the three of us… we award the 2023 Drama Medal to Eiliad o Ddewiniaeth by Wasabi.”
He and fellow adjudicators, Seiriol Davies and Elgan Rhys, added: “Many of the plays grabbed my imagination and that of my fellow judges presenting complex characters, unexpected situations, and strong dialogue.
“I must admit that it’s disappointing that quite a few didn’t feel like stage plays in terms of structure, dialogue, live theatrical experience, and even format.”
Cai Llewelyn Evans received the Drama Medal, in memory of Eiryth and Urien Wiliam and donated by their children, Hywel, Sioned and Steffan, and £750 donated by the Huw Roberts Memorial Fund, Pwllheli.
Part of the winning work was presented at the Ceremony with the support of the JO Roberts Memorial Fund.
The writer was brought up in Pontarddulais and currently lives in Cardiff with his partner, Noriko. He is a member of the Senedd’s Translation and Recording Service as a simultaneous translator.
Before that, he lived for a decade in Tokyo, where he was a journalist with the Japan Times newspaper, before moving to work in financial services.
After moving back to Wales be wrote a series of sketches broadcast on BBC Radio Cymru. Subsequently, he wrote two short films which were broadcast on S4C.
Cai was a member of Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru’s New Playwrights Group and is currently collaborating with Cwmni Theatr Bara Caws on a comedy.
The full adjudication for this competition and the all the other composition winners at this year’s Eisteddfod are included in the Cyfansoddiadau a Beirniadaethau which will go on sale at the end of the Chairing Ceremony on Friday afternoon.
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