taking our culture forward

The Christmas period on the Isle of Man once always used to include performances of the White Boys play (Ny Guillyn Baney).

This traditional Manx 'mumming' play would not have been performed to any stable script, but it always included a few key elements: saints, a fight, a death, a resurrection thanks to 'the Doctor' and a happy ending. This play could have been seen on the streets of Manx towns all over the Island during the Christmas period in the 19th Century and beyond.

The play included a special White Boys' Carol, and it was concluded with a sword-dance which finished with the distinctive holding aloft of the swords interlocked into a hexagon.

Videos

  • The White Boys Play (Ramsey 2019)

  • The White Boys Dance performed by Arbory Primary School

  • The White Boys play (Peel 2019)

  • The White Boys Play (Peel, 2000)

  • The White Boys Carol (Manannan's Winterfest 2018)

  • The White Boys Play (Peel, 1997)

Audio