Who We Are

Fern Smith and Philip Ralph are life-partners who live together in mid-Wales having created Emergence as a joint creative practice after decades of work as professional storymakers in the realms of theatre, television and film.

Short biogs below – for more details on our individual practices and experience, please follow the links to our websites.

Fern Smith

Fern is an artist, facilitator and wilderness guide, trained at the School of Lost Borders in California. She was Fellow for Wales on the Clore Leadership Programme in 2009/10 and received a Major Creative Wales Award from the Arts Council of Wales in 2016/17. She first Quested with David Wendl Berry of Earth Encounters in 2011. Since then she has been bringing earth-based practices and ritual more consciously into her work. She has trained and has experience in a variety of facilitation methods. Her background is as a theatre practitioner and co-founder of  Volcano Theatre. She developed Emergence in 2010, creating spaces for transformation, nature connection and dialogue. She is an associate of the Annwn Foundation, and is a registered Craniosacral Therapist and Certified TRE Provider with Craniosacral Therapy Wales. She also works with artists, activists and therapists as a Relational Dynamics coach. She is also a celebrant trained with Dead Good Guides.

Website: www.fernsmith.uk

Philip Ralph

Phil is an award-winning writer for screen and stage, and a facilitator and wilderness guide. Originally from Yorkshire, Phil trained in acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and was a Writer on Attachment at Soho Theatre. His work has won multiple awards, and he has a lifetime of experience as a storymaker across all mediums. Phil offers an unique hybrid of storytelling and stand-up with his One-Eyed Man practice for which he received a Creative Wales Award from the Arts of Council Wales in 2011. He has taught story and transformation alongside Manda Scott at Schumacher College and has trained in Shambhala meditation in the lineage of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche with his late teacher Jerry Granelli. He has assisted Pippa Bondy of Ancient Healing Ways on Vision Quest and has studied and practised Way of Council with her. Alongside his life partner Fern, Phil facilitates Emergence retreats and guides rites of passage at their micro-retreat centre in mid Wales. Phil is passionately engaged in the power of story, ritual, and ceremony to help us navigate changes in our lives and the world. He also offers mentorship for writers and has set up and run men’s groups.

Website: www.philipralph.com

Our collaborators & inspirations