“Books shouldn't be daunting; they should be funny, exciting and wonderful.”
These were the words of the prolific and immensely popular Cardiff-born writer Roald Dahl, and during S4C’s Dathlu Darllen week there will be a book-shelf full of programmes and features all echoing the great author’s message on the Channel.
S4C’s Dathlu Darllen is a week to celebrate literature and all reading-related things, which runs from Monday 3 March to Sunday 9 March.
With World Book Day sandwiched nicely in the middle on Thursday 6 March, the Channel’s schedule will be peppered with programmes, films and features all celebrating the wonderful world of reading.
S4C’s Dathlu Darllen week is being organised in partnership with the Welsh Books Council and BBC Radio Cymru, and they too will be hosting a range of reading-related items and activities throughout the week.
On S4C, a combination of great programmes from the archive and brand new programmes looking at some of Wales’s greatest writers means that there will be something for each and every bookworm out there.
The week’s milestones include a film portrayal of the late poet Iwan Llwyd, a fresh look at the iconic children’s classic Teulu Bach Nantoer and Welsh Children’s Poet Laureate Aneirin Karadog’s visit to a very special village.
“It’s great to be working in partnership with the Welsh Books Council and Radio Cymru on this special week to celebrate reading.” Says S4C’s director of content, Dafydd Rhys. “Reading opens many doors and here in Wales we can take pride in the fact that it’s an exciting time in the world of books all year round, but we’re delighted to be able to dedicate a week on the Channel to celebrate some of our nation’s best loved books and authors.”
Elwyn Jones, Chief Executive at the Welsh Books Council said: “World Book Day has developed into an annual event celebrating reading among children and adults. Schools and libraries have been part of the activities for years and the Council is extremely glad that S4C and Radio Cymru are part of the partnership this year, making sure that books and reading are in the limelight on World Book Day.”
S4C will be taking a penetrating look at one of the twentieth century's most prominent Welsh women writers, on Mamwlad: Kate Roberts on Monday 3 March, as Ffion Hague goes on the trail of Kate Roberts as she battled to save Gwasg Gee.
Then on Wednesday 5 March we’ll get another chance to see which famous novel the actress Ffion Dafis chose as her favourite on 6 Nofel: Ffion Dafis.
On Thursday 6 March, World Book Day, S4C will be revisiting Teulu Bach Nantoer, as Beti George assesses the impact of this iconic Welsh novel for children, now available as an e-book, following the centenary of its publication last year.
Then on Saturday 8 March we’re set to be entertained by Y Rhwyd. Based on Caryl Lewis’s novel this film is packed with excitement, sex and conspiracy with an unexpected twist at the end.
On Sunday 9 March S4C will broadcast a brand new programme profiling the life and work of Welsh poet Iwan Llwyd on Iwan Llwyd: Rhwng Gwên nos Sadwrn a gwg y Sul. With never-before seen footage and interviews with some of the poet’s closest friends this one’s not to be missed.
Following this programme there will be a repeat of Afal Drwg Adda, an insightful drama-documentary about the life and work of the author Caradog Prichard.
S4C’s magazine show Heno will be taking a look at the world of books on their nightly programme and following Aneirin Karadog, Bardd Plant Cymru (Children’s Poet Laureate of Wales) on World Book Day as he takes a trip to Pentre Bach in the company of poet Myrddin ap Dafydd to get local children playing with words and poetry.
Children and young people can also take part in the celebrations. Presenters on S4C’s Children’s Service Cyw will be asking their young viewers what their favourite books are as well as offering a chance to win a hamper full of brand new books!
And on Stwnsh, S4C’s service for older children, we’ll get to take a first look at presenter Anni Llŷn’s new book hot off the press, and the Stwnsh gang will be asking guests in the studio which is their all-time favourite read.
And don’t forget that you can be part of the fun as well by tweeting your favourite book or author using the hashtag #dathludarllen, if you can prise yourself away from that book long enough!