Sunday, 30 September 2012

A centre of attraction

Below is my “Big Day Out” column from the Saturday, September 29, 2012, Swansea edition of the South Wales Evening Post.

A centre of attraction
A big day out! 
RICHARD THOMAS heads to The Taliesin Arts Centre in Swansea. 
WHY? The Taliesin Arts Centre is a very popular venue presenting a wide variety of performances and exhibitions. Open throughout the year the centre host a broad programme of events including cinema screenings and a wide variety of live performances. With a programme ranging from children's events to opera, there's something to suit all tastes.
WHAT’S THE BUZZ? The Taliesin hold over 50 live performances per year. On October 11, the Live Stream National Theatre presents The Last of the Haussmans, a new play by Stephen Beresford about a family that’s losing its grip starring one of Britain’s best-loved and most versatile actors, Julie Walters. The highly anticipated play is sold out but there are many other performances to look forward o at the centre. Choreographed by Arthur Pita, God's Garden is a new dance theatre piece co-commissioned by DanceEast and ROH2. Set on the Portuguese paradise island of Madeira and based on the parable of the Prodigal Son, the golden boy of the Costa family is under pressure to marry a local girl but flees on his wedding day to avoid his duty. After returning, he discovers his jilted bride must have her revenge.
ANY HISTORY? The Taliesin first opened in 1984 and is named after the 6th century Celtic bard or poet of the same name. According to legend Taliesin sung at the court of King Arthur and other British kings. WHAT TO TAKE? Tickets for Performance Arts God's Garden cost £12 and are only £10 for under 25s. School prices are £7 per head.
LOOK OUT FOR? The Ceri Richards Gallery inside the Taliesin hosts regular touring exhibitions and stocks an excellent range of greetings cards as well as jewellery, ceramics and other craft items. The Taliesin also houses the Egypt Centre, a museum of Egyptian antiquities. There are over 4500 items in the collection. Egypt Centre staff have published over 100 online pages concerning individual items, which you can find on the Egypt Centre website at funerary items on display in the House of Death are one highlight. These include amulets, shrouds, statues, coffins and fragments of coffins, and even canopic jars, which were used by the Ancient Egyptians to store and preserve the internal organs of the deceased for their journey through the afterlife.
WHEN TO GO? The Taliesin is open Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm. On Saturdays the centre is open 10am to 1pm and 1.30pm to 4pm. The box office remains open until 8pm on performance evenings. Unless otherwise stated screenings begin at 7.30pm. More information about event times and dates can be found on the Taliesin website. Just go to and click "diary".
TELL ME MORE: The Taliesin Arts Centre can be found on the campus of Swansea University at Singleton Park. For sat nav users their address and postcode is: Taliesin Arts Centre, Swansea University, Singleton Park, Swansea, SA2 8PZ. For more information and to book tickets call 01792 602060.
Visit Richard Thomas's website at