Join in our virtual Cornish Wassail!
There are two elements to our Wassail, the ceremony and the song. Join us with either but preferably both.
Taking part in the ceremony:
- Watch the video, the ceremony is a delightful bit of fun but connects us with the natural world.
- Listen to the video with headphones on one device and video yourself joining in on another, a phone works fine: the Spirit of the Trees calls upon you to wake the orchard by shouting “DIFUNEWGH!” (Wake up in Cornish) three times; you then join the “Shallal” an infernal noise on pots, tins drums or anything to hand; finally hang some toast on a branch. It does not have to be an apple tree, or even outdoors this year – be creative.
- You do not have to capture a complete video of everything together, you can capture each bit seperately – just sending a picture is great too.
- Send us your recordings via WeTransfer using the email address firstname.lastname@example.org 23rd January. Please let us know your name and where you are from – we hope to go global on this!
Singing the Wassail Song:
Wassel Kernow, written and sung by Tir ha Tavas (Dee and Dave Brotherton), filmed and edited by French + Scott Media Productions in support of the St Ives Community Project.
- Have a listen to the video by and see if you can pick up the tune. Follow through the lyrics and don’t worry too much about pronunciation. If you’re struggling to learn the tune or the Cornish then come to our zoom session on the 16th when we will go through the song and words in detail. If you play an instrument don’t be shy about adding that to the mix too!
- Using the video’s sheet music and lyrics (you can also download and print these off) practice until you’re feeling comfortable to sing it the whole way through in one go.
- Recording – Before the deadline – the 23rd – record yourself singing or playing along – to do this you’ll need two devices, and a pair of headphones. With one device listen to the video through your headphones and with the other device record yourself playing along, dress as you see fit and try to be in well lit area. Ideally we’d like it as a video, but if you’re not comfortable with that, then a voice recording is also great. In general the quality of recording from a phone is better than a computer.
- Send us your recording via WeTransfer using the email: email@example.com and we’ll edit it all together. Please let us know your name and where you are from – we hope to go global on this!
- Stay in touch by joining the Facebook pageand group its a friendly space to stay in touch with other wassailers and ask questions!
- If you have any questions please email us or get in touch through the Facebook page/group.
|Solempnitys Wassel||Wassail Ceremony|
|Areth dhe’n gwydh (Ordenor)|
A gowetha yth on ni kuntellys omma rag Galow Difunyans Avalennek gans agan wassel.
Y hwovynnyn orth an Avalennek ha spyrys an goswik rag lowender, yeghes ha trevas da y'n vledhen a dheu. Lemmyn y whovynnav orth Spyrys and Goswik dhe dhifuna an avalennow.
|Address to the Trees (MC)
Friends we are gathered here to for the Orchards Awakening Call with our Wassail.
We ask the orchard and the spirit of the forest for happiness, health and a good harvest in the year to come. I now ask the spirit of the forest to awaken the apple trees.
|Spyrys an gwydh|
Y halwav orth an gwydh, Difunewgh!
Shallal, Kan Wassel ha sedhyewgh kras y'n Skudel Wassel ha'y kregi war’n gwydh.
I call upon the trees. Awaken!
Shallal (An infernal noise) sing the wassail as below, Dip toast in Wassail Bowl and hang on the trees.
|Kan Wassel |
Wassel, wassel, a-dro oll an gwydh,
may teffons lowr a frutys rudh.
Wassel, wassel, bennathow dhedha,
re dheffo tresor yn termyn da.
Y plensyn avalen gans fydhyans fur,
may hyll hi tevi heb strifow meur.
Re geryn hy gwreydh ha skorennow mar grev
ha gwitha hy bewnans gans nerth pub dydh.
Wassel, wassel, a-dro oll an gwydh… hag erel
Ni a’s difun ha ri bennath gans kan,
ha lemmyn solempnya gans dons ha gans lamm.
An fordh ma yw gwir, hengovek ha teg,
ha bynner re varwo an avalennek.
Wassel, wassel, a-dro oll an gwydh…. hag erel
Re dheffo lowena gans agan wassel,
ha re omglewvons an gwydh milwell.
‘Tho gwren ni keskana ha donsya gans hwarth
ha bys vynari bos kowetha fyrv.
Wassel, wassel, a-dro oll an gwydh…. hag erel
Wassail, wassail, around all the trees,
which may grow plenty of red fruit.
Wassail, wassail, blessings to them,
may come treasure in good time.
We plant an apple tree with well advised confidence,
so that she can grow without much struggle.
May we love her roots and branches so strong
and look after her life with energy every day.
We awake them and give blessing with song,
and now celebrate with dance and leap.
This way is true, traditional and beautiful,
and may the orchard never die.
May there come happiness with our wassail,
and may the trees feel a thousand times better.
So let’s sing together and dance with laughter
and for evermore be firm friends.
The Wassail in Cornwall has a fascinating story which might have started with an alliance between the Cornish and the Vikings! See our Wassail page for more.
We are grateful for help from the following organisations with our virtual Wassail:
Wassel Kernow was filmed as part of a project to promote and support the St Ives community Land Trust and we are grateful for their permission to use this video.
Cornwall Council’s language office supported Wassel Kernow through their Social Activity Funding.
We have also been pleased to collaborate with Here’s To Thee a new Arts Commission from Arts and Culture University and the Royal Albert Memorial Museum. Led by internationally renowned artist Simon Pope, Here’s To Thee is a fascinating and thought-provoking new Arts Commission exploring the customs, cultures and ecology of cider-making, including touching on the wassail. Collaborating with a team of academics, artists and musicians from across the region, this project will allow audiences to uncover more about the rich and captivating world of microbiomes and better understand how we are all connected with our environment. Find out more at https://www.artsandcultureexeter.co.uk/arts-commission/heres-to-thee