FRINGE REVIEW – Dylan Thomas, Return Journey


 5 – 30 Aug 1315 (1430) @ Assembly Hall, the Mound 

Soothing music with a touch of pathos gently ushers visitors into the world of poet Dylan Thomas on tour in the States, courtesy of creator and performer Bob Kingdom and prior directing aid from Anthony Hopkins.
With a voice resonant and sonorous, a hint of Welsh lilt – occasionally strengthened when apt – and brilliant delivery, fully on the thought and teasingly leading his hearers in one direction before a quick turn down an unseen but suddenly familiar path, Kingdom’s Thomas is a delight.
A certain amount of the truly engaging wit and energy is weighted towards the first part of this show, which means that it begins to feel just a little long in performance before the end, but overall Kingdom holds the stage well, lit to accompany the mood of Thomas’ poems or the US talk circuit, and is equally accomplished in both verse-speaking and story-telling.

With no disrespect or lack of admiration for the actor’s visual expressiveness – well worth watching – this is a show to which it is a pleasure to listen: the audience is truly audient, soaking up Thomas’ marvellous words and wickedly detailed portraits, lovingly painted by the talented Mr Kingdom. To sum up, Dylan Thomas: Return Journey is moving, intriguing, amusing and disarming.

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