Tail of Two Dogs

by Emma Blundell
Staged reading directed by Bronwen Carr
The Dylan Thomas Centre, Swansea
2nd November 2009

“Phyllip Harries and Alexander Vlahos play the older and younger incarnations respectively, leading a seven-strong cast comprised of performers who pull out all the stops to create a focused and well-paced piece of theatre.

Harries and Vlahos portray Dylan at very different times in the writer's life, and playwright Emma Blundell has succeeded in capturing the character's weaknesses as well as his strengths. The scenes of conflict between the older Dylan and his volatile, unpredictable wife Caitlin are remarkably powerful and necessarily disturbing, with Lauren Phillips giving as good as she gets when the arguments spill over into violence.

Matt Bates, Jordan Bernarde and Vern Griffiths are well cast as Dylan's friends Vernon Watkins, Dan Jones and Fred Janes, the figures who formed part of the famous Kardomah gang, while Kristin Atherton rises to the challenge of playing no less than three of the characters who loomed large in Dylan's life - namely, Pamela Hansford-Johnson, Pearl Kazin and Liz Reitell.

[…]this is an admirable and memorable addition to the ever-growing canon of biographical dramas devoted to Dylan's life and work”

– Graham Williams, South Wales Evening Post

Photograph: Huw Webber
Cast: Alexander Vlahos, Matthew Bates, Phyl Harries, Vern Griffiths, Jordan Bernarde