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April 27, 2017 / basabbott

Born To Trouble


Diss High School

Richard Burton was born to trouble, as the sparks fly upward.
He led a Faustian life of booze, cigs, women, adulation, with his final curtain call at 58.
All solo performer Rhodri Miles needs on stage are a throne-like chair and a drinks trolley, continually visited.
That Welsh paean Under Milk Wood underscores the show and rolls off his tongue like the Llareggub tide.
We hear a potted life story of Richard Walter Jenkins from poor beginnings to fame and wealth.
Many green room and film anecdotes are recounted along the way, forever with drink in hand.
Mr. Miles gets into his stride after the interval when he talks about Cleopatra, the film that made Burton’s career take off.
Sometimes he sounds more like Anthony Hopkins, without that fierce, nasal delivery Burton used in performance.
But the passages from Dylan Thomas and glimpses of Hamlet (‘What a piece of work is a man!’), from Old Vic and Broadway days, left us longing for more.

Basil Abbott

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