Dylan Thomas - Return Journey:.

From the poetry and prose of Dylan Thomas
Starring Bob Kingdom as Dylan Thomas
Originally directed by Anthony Hopkins

FOR ALL INTEREST IN "DYLAN THOMAS: RETURN JOURNEY", PLEASE CONTACT: Richard Jordan at Richard Jordan Productions: 020 7 243 9001 or by email:

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Dylan Thomas reincarnated. Kingdom IS Thomas!

A chance to experience the electrifying presence of Dylan Thomas's last lecture tour, the last before the White Horse Pub and the legendary seventeenth whiskey. Kingdom's portrayal of his bardic countryman is tangibly heartfelt, without an inkling of actorliness; audiences could swear it was the poet himself on stage.

Blending the stories and the poetry with incisive comments on the nature of performing, of audiences, and of the American touring circuit, Thomas (through Kingdom) takes his audience through Wales, past and present, through the natural world, to the one that lies after. Under Anthony Hopkins' minimalist direction, the conduit between the stage and the seating opens like a lock gate, bringing both performer and audience together in appreciation of the beauty, the humour, the passion and wit of the words of this writer.

Few people who saw an early incarnation of Bob Kingdom's Dylan Thomas at the Chelsea Arts Club would have realised the international critical acclaim which would follow, to demand that the show should run seemingly for ever and everywhere. It has been seen in Britain, the United States, Australia and the Republic of Ireland. Indeed it has gone beyond the English speaking world to France, Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey. On Christmas Day 1990 the Sky satellite network brought Kingdom's Dylan into numerous parlours.


"The dry, wry, mischievous manner Kingdom absorbs from Dylan for the tales is bewitching. I could have listened to his spell-binding, word-winding wizardry there for hours." (TheT imes)

"He weaves a mellifluous vocal spell fully equal to Thomas' verbal one, and creates an actor/author partnership to match the very greatest." (Evening Standard)

"One of this year's highlights" (The Guardian, 1991)

"Bob Kingdom seems to have totally suppressed his own being in his search for union with Dylan Thomas... He has perfect command of the rhythms of language, of the timing of those magically original,, devastating, unsettling or wittily displaced lines and phrases. The delivery and writing merge into one perfectly balanced, beautifully turned performance" (The Scotsman)

"Spell-binding stuff" (The Times)

"Captivating and tireless... Kingdom captured Thomas' curious combination of lush lyricism and dry wit without a moment of uncertainty." (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

"Wit, and feeling, and rollicking comedy, and even beauty" (The New Yorker)

"What falls from his lips is a series of word pictures, nearly breakneck in their spill, but of such startling clarity that the mind spins along with them and miraculously keeps up. ... The stage is alive with characters, all of them tumbling out of richly descriptive prose to be perfectly captured in Kingdom's shift of voice and attitude." (Boston Globe)

Return Journey - Biographies dylan_thumb

Anthony Hopkins (director)
In 1955 Anthony Hopkins was very taken by Emlyn Williams' one-man show about Dylan Thomas. "For many years I wanted to play Dylan Thomas in either a play or a film. I never had the inclination or the foresight to devise a programme for myself. Then one night I was invited to watch Bob Kingdom's performance in a pub theatre. It was really impressive. A few months later I ventured a suggestion that I would like to 'help out' if he needed an objective 'other eye'. He agreed and said he would like to broaden his performance.

"Working with him has been a revelation, because I realise how passionately he feels and identifies with Thomas. Bob Kingdom not only identifies with Dylan Thomas but sometimes, and often, the two personalities seem to merge. It is a remarkable performance."

Dylan Thomas
Dylan Thomas was born in Swansea, South Wales on October 27th 1914, the son of the English Master of Swansea Grammar School, where Dylan was later educated. He began writing poetry as a schoolboy before taking his first job as a junior reporter for the South Wales Evening Post in 1931. His first volume of verse Eighteen Poems was published in 1934 prior to a move to London where he worked in journalism, broadcasting and script-writing. His next volume, Twenty Five Poems was completed and published in 1936. In the same year, Dylan married Caitlin Macnamara and they moved to Laugharne in Carmarthenshire, South West Wales. During World War II, Dylan spent most of his time in London where he wrote & broadcast for the BBC. In 1940 Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Dog - a collection of short stories, brought him widespread critical acclaim. He also wrote several plays and scripts including The Doctor And The Devils. Deaths And Entrances which followed in 1946, contained some of his finest poetry and resulted in his being invited to lecture in the USA. Thomas eventually visited the USA on four separate tours which paid handsomely, enabling the upkeep of his family back in Wales. His heavy drinking, however, had seriously weakened his health and on 9th November 1953, after a famous binge in the White Horse Pub in New York, he died, ostensibly of alcoholic poisoning - although it has since been suggested that he, being diabetic, entered a fatal diabetic coma induced by excessive alcohol. His body was returned home and buried in Laugharne with a simple wooden cross marking his grave. He was 39. Under Milk Wood and Quite Early One Morning,a collection of his works for the BBC were published posthumously in 1954.

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