10 August 2016

Roald Dahl Summer Events

The celebrations for the 100th anniversary of Roald Dahl's birth are just around the corner! Wales' world famous author would have been a century old this September. To mark his impact on the literary world, a programme of country-wide adventures has been put together for young and old fans. 

As well as the huge City of the Unexpected event taking place across the city of Cardiff on 17-18 September, Dahl-inspired exhibitions, sessions and activities will be popping up around the country beforehand. There will be songs, music, dancing, theatre performances, readings, workshops and writings, plus plenty of sneaky surprises that would have no doubt tickled Dahl pink. Let your imagination run free at these gems this summer

Roald Dahl exhibition
National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth (all summer)

The National Library of Wales will be showing some of Roald Dahl’s original manuscripts throughout the summer. These include a single page from the first draft manuscript of James and the Giant Peach and two pages from the typed draft transcript of James and the Giant Peach. You can also see an ink and pencil illustration of the peach being flown by seagulls, created by Nancy Ekholm Burkert.

A Quentin Blake illustration from James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
James and the Giant Peach by ©Quentin Blake 2016

Quentin Blake: Inside Stories
National Museum Cardiff (until 20 November) 

This exhibition is a celebration of Quentin Blake, the man behind hundreds of illustrations in the books of Roald Dahl. Visitors can get an insight into the work that goes into producing each illustration from start to finish, plus there are examples of some of his most famous works including sketches from The Twits and Danny, the Champion of the World.

The Big Friendly Read
Libraries throughout Wales (August) 

Throughout August, libraries across Wales are running the Big Friendly Read, a summer initiative to get children reading. This year's challenge encourages children to explore invention, adventure, mischief, word play, child champions and friendship – all things that Roald Dahl explored. 

An illustration by Quentin Blake from The BFG by Roald Dahl


 by ©Quentin Blake 2016

Roald Dahl Archives event
National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth (10 August)

An archivist from the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre is giving a special talk to children about what archives are, what they are for and what you can find in them. There will be the chance to view rarely seen items and learn fascinating secrets about Dahl’s stories. 

The Wondercrump World of Roald Dahl Exhibition
Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff (12 August – 14 January 2017) 

Wales Millennium Centre welcomes its largest exhibition to date: The Wondercrump World of Roald Dahl. It is set to be a magical, interactive experience featuring original manuscripts, handwritten letters, artefacts from the Roald Dahl Museum & Story Centre and loads of surprises. Visitors can learn all about Dahl's varied life and works, finding out about the pure imagination and craft behind the magic.

A Quentin Blake illustration from The Twits by Roald Dahl

The Twits

 by ©Quentin Blake 2016

Poetry masterclass
National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth (26 August) 

The Children's Poet Laureate of Wales, Anni Llŷn, is hosting a morning of fun and poetry. Anni will show children around exhibition pieces then help them to write their own poetry inspired by Dahl's mischievous characters. The event will be held in Welsh.

Outdoor Theatre: Danny the Champion of the World
St Donats Arts Centre, Llantwit Major (29th August) 

Illyria Theatre Company presents a summer outdoor performance of one of Dahl's children's classics on the lawn in St. Donats Arts Centre. Danny and his dad, who loves to poach pheasants, live and work together. When Danny's dad doesn't come home after an attempt to poach pheasants from a wealthy landowner, Danny, with the help of fellow villagers, sets out to rescue him. Watch the much-loves tale unfold in the great outdoors. You can bring a picnic to nibble on and a rug in case it gets chilly.
Want to join in the fun and mischief? Find out where you can involved in the hundreds of events taking place across Wales this year to celebrate the work of Roald Dahl.