The Welsh poet, Dylan Thomas, wrote Under Milk Wood as a “play for voices.” Some people might take this characterization as meaning a play to be done on the radio, and while it has been both broadcast and recorded Mr. Thomas seemed to be thinking of a performance very similar to the one you’ll see this weekend, using scripts and having the actors interpret the material from the page, rather than act it out.
The result is more a concert than a play, where six performers create 63 residents of a mythical fishing village without changing costume or even moving about the stage. It’s a tour-de-force for the cast, which must work together mostly without looking at each other. Guest artist Scott Paulson plays a big part in making this concert reading become theatrical. He’s the one-man band behind the readers, and you’ll see him create whatever sound and music are needed to help the text of this prose-poem to come alive.
Thomas’s villagers are wackier and sexier than Garrison Keillor’s Lake Wobegon counterparts, but they’re every bit as funny and touching. Relax, pretend you’re sitting underneath a large shade tree on a beautiful spring day, and let words and sounds create the play in your imagination.
Under Milk Wood will be preformed July 26, 27 and 28 at the Diversionary Theatre in University Heights. Click here for more information or to purchase tickets: http://stpaulcathedral.org/milkwood
–Bill Eadie, Director