City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Dylan Thomas: Clown in the Moon, Assembly Hall, Review


By Barbara Bryan - Posted on 14 August 2014

4
Show details
Venue: 
Assembly Hall
Company: 
Miles Productions
Running time: 
60mins
Production: 
Gwynne Edwards (writer), Garet Armstrong (director)
Performers: 
Rhodri Miles

The title of this show, ‘Clown in the Moon’, is the title of the first poem Dylan Thomas wrote when he was fourteen. This year commemorates the centenary of Thomas’ birth and in this excellent, informative monologue Rhodri Miles, the narrator, takes us through Thomas’ journey as a rising poet to his premature death at the age of thirty-nine.

We hear about his never-ending drunken escapades and affairs, even when he was married to Caitlin. But despite Thomas encouraging his reputation as a “roistering, drunken and doomed poet” his skill as a writer marks him as one of the leading poets of the twentieth century, with poems such as “Do not go gentle in that good night” and “And death shall have no dominion”.

To supplement his meagre income he broadcast quite frequently and Miles has captured his Welsh accent to a tee. He also did tours of America and his ‘play for voices’ – 'Under Milk Wood’ - was first performed in New York, with Thomas as the narrator.

Gwynne Edwards has written a good script, and it was a good performance (although Miles did rush it a bit at times) and a credible portrayal of this man who was a complex character.

After his death in 1953 in New York of misdiagnosed pneumonia Caitlin later wrote, “Ours was a drink story, not a love story . . . the bar was our altar.”

Dates: 15, 17, 20, 22 and 24 at 11:10