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Michael Sheen to lead special Under Milk Wood reading in New York

Frost/Nixon star Michael Sheen will celebrate poet Dylan Thomas’ centennial by starring in a reading of the literary icon's Under Milk Wood on the same stage where the "play for voices" premiered in 1953.

Sheen will also direct the performance at New York’s 92nd Street Y on 26 October (14).


The reading will be broadcast live simultaneously on the venue's website and on bbc.co.uk/radiowales in Britain.


Thomas made his debut at the 92nd Street Y’s Poetry Center in 1950, and he premiered Under Milk Wood on its stage on 14 May, 1953. There is only one recording of that performance with Thomas himself in the cast.


Welshman Sheen cannot wait to perform the piece by his fellow countryman, stating, "It's a real honor and an absolute thrill to be able to perform Under Milk Wood in this very special year and on the stage that it first found its voice. And the live radio broadcast is an opportunity to celebrate him and his work in both New York - a city that became so important to Dylan - and, at the same time, in Wales, his inspiration and home."


The all-Welsh cast also features actress Kate Burton, whose parents, Sybil Williams and Richard Burton, participated in the first BBC radio recording of Under Milk Wood in 1954. Burton also starred in the 1972 film adaptation of Under Milk Wood.


She says, "It is very meaningful for me to be participating in this event as my parents were in the original recording. I am very proud to be Welsh and to carry on the family tradition."