The Dylan Thomas Birthplace
Events at Dylan’s
A Child’s Christmas in the Parlour – Wednesday 13th December 2023 – 6.30pm to a 7pm start
You can see A Child’s Christmas in Wales performed all over the world in theatres, church halls and schools but there is only one place which inspired the story and is the setting for a very, very special performance – live in the parlour and on Zoom worldwide.
Step into the heart of Dylan’s childhood as you take a trip down memory lane or imagine Christmases years ago while listening to the most famous and timeless Christmas story of modern times. And you do so in the house – in the room – about which it was conceived. Where the author couldn’t remember “…whether it snowed for six days and six nights when I was twelve or twelve days and twelve nights when I was six…“!
Adrian Metcalfe of the Lighthouse Theatre Company will bring alive A Child’s Christmas in Wales in the front parlour of the Dylan Thomas Birthplace and there will also be traditional seasonal refreshments as well as extra goodies, Christmas songs and Christmas items to purchase.
Join us in the Dylan Thomas Birthplace for a unique experience – imagine where the fat uncles sat down after Christmas dinner, fell asleep and snored while the thin aunts tiptoed around sipping parsnip wine and getting a bit tiddly because “...it was only once a year...”
A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas is published by Weidenfeld and Nicholson and performed by kind permission of the copyright holders The Dylan Thomas Trust. Copies of the latest edition will be on sale on the night.
Also getting into the Christmas spirit will be the Cwmdonkin Ukes ukelele band with a great selection of Christmas sing along songs. Christmas jumpers a must!!!
Each year tickets sell very quickly and this will be your only chance to marvel at Mrs Prothero’s turkey fire and cats! The evening performance is 6.30 for 7.00pm and also includes an opportunity to explore the house.
Other Upcoming Events
Throughout the Year – call for expressions of interest Exhibitions of art on a Dylan or Swansea theme including work by professional artists and photographers. We’ve just finished an exhibition of photographs on a Dylan theme for talented University of Wales student James Peaple.
Are you a musician or poet looking to add a prestigious venue to your CV? Or if you know of an artist or creative who would like to take advantage of an exhibition or event – we’d love to hear from you.
18th November 2023 – Wreath laying at Westminster Abbey
COVID has prevented us from holding this event for the past three years so the 70th anniversary of Dylan’s death takes on special significance.
Saturday 4th November 2023 – The front parlour will host the first performance for twenty years of Michael Stimpson’s Song Cycle for Dylan for baritone and harp featuring Gareth Brynmor John and the official harpist to the Prince of Wales – Alis Huws. This is the only performance in the UK before performances in New York.
27th to 29th October 2023 – Clear your diary for two weeks for The Beginning Festival featuring visiting choirs, the Dylan Thomas Society hosting of a three day Swansea wide conference with the Thomas Hardy Society over Dylan’s birthday weekend. The following weekend there is a very special performance in the front parlour of Michael Stimpson’s song cycle for baritone and harp – Dylan – featuring the Prince of Wales harpist Alys Huws.
LAUNCH OF ‘FORTY POEMS FOR DYLAN’ BY ROGER STENNETT PLUS MUSIC FROM LORRAINE KING
Wednesday 14th June 2023 – 6.30pm for a 7pm start
Roger Stennett is an author, poet, script writer and a whole lot more. He is also the son of Welsh actor and comedian Stan Stennett so expect some laughs as he talks to Alun Gibbard about his poetry collection Forty Poems for Dylan Thomas which chart the life of Dylan and also of his own which saw him immersed in the theatre at a young age.
It’s great to welcome back folk singer Lorraine King who always sets the parlour alight with her original songs. Expect some stories as she talks with Alun about the play he wrote and for which she and the group Osian composed the music. More recently she has appeared on the Roy Noble Radio Wales Show with her unique compositions Number Five Cwmdonkin Drive, Travelling on the A470 and Undy (don’t ask!!!!)
Join us either in person in the Birthplace Parlour, or live on Zoom.
THE NINE LIVES OF TOM CAT
Thursday 8th June 2023 – 6.30pm for a 7pm start
The first performance of a brand new play. When Chris Tally Evans started to develop his new play, the Swansea born actor and director, vowed to use the Birthplace to give added inspiration to the development of the play.
Thanks to support from the Arts Council of Wales, Chris and playwright Richard Hurford (yet another Swansea born creative who now lives in Sheffield), are staging a residency to develop this script, exploring the backstory of Captain Cat, the much loved blind character from Under Milk Wood in the Dylan Thomas Birthplace in Swansea. A group of creative practitioners, digital artists, movement director, and dramaturge converge for a week and present a live and streamed worldwide event on the 9th June.
This is yet another ‘first’ for the house where Dylan lived for 23 years and wrote two thirds of his published work.
Join us either in person in the Birthplace Parlour, or live on Zoom.
DYLAN DAY DELIGHT
Sunday 14th May 2023 – 6.30pm for a 7pm start
We continue our year long celebration marking 70 years of Under Milk Wood by exploring two of the most innovative versions of Dylan’s famous work.
May 14th is International Dylan Thomas Day and it is the 70th anniversary of the first performance of Under Milk Wood at 92Y in New York. To commemorate it we have no one but TWO Under Milk Woods live in the Birthplace Parlour & on Zoom…
The making of the animated version of Under Milk Wood, PLUS Cerys Matthews’ version for children.
calon.tv: Back in 1982 the first commission from the new Welsh language TV channel S4C went to calon.tv to produce an animated version of Under Milk Wood. This ambitious project involved the production of thousands of unique images. Robin Lyons and Andrew Ofilier from calon.tv will join Alun Gibbard in the parlour to talk about the making of the film featuring Richard Burton and the cast of the original BBC production, with loads of original images which will later be available for sale. Following UMW the calon.tv team went on to create Super Ted and Fireman Sam as Wales led the European animation industry.
Cerys Matthews: From 1982 we come bang up to date with Alun in conversation with singer and broadcaster Cerys Matthews over Zoom about how she conceived and produced a children’s version of Under Milk Wood. Cerys, former lead singer of Catatonia and now successful author and broadcaster with her own Sunday morning programme on BBC Radio 6 Music. Cerys is a long time friend of the Birthplace, having recorded the opening sequences of her BBC2 programme My Life in Verse in the Birthplace many years ago.
“It’s a precious experience – stepping into Dylan Thomas’ shoes – entering the house where he was born, standing in the rooms where he wrote some of his most intense poems. As for staying the night? There, overlooking Cwmdonkin Park? Unbelievable!”
The evening will end with a unique showing of the animated version of Under Milk Wood.
Join us either in person in the Birthplace Parlour, or live on Zoom for this unique celebration of International Dylan Thomas Day.
POETS IN THE PARLOUR- THE LAUNCH OF WHERE SHADOWS STIR’ BY SWANSEA’S BYRON BEYNON
Tuesday 28th February 2023 – 6.30pm for a 7pm start
This is the start of a special year. Dylan Thomas passed away tragically at the age of 39 on 9th November 1953. To commemorate the 70th anniversary of his death the Birthplace and the Dylan Thomas Society are curating a year long series of events culminating in a wreath laying ceremony at Poet’s Corner in Westminster Abbey.
It is fitting that our first event from the famous front parlour – home of A Child’s Christmas in Wales – is the launch of a new book – Where Shadows Stir – by the acclaimed Swansea poet Byron Beynon – live in the parlour and on Zoom worldwide.
Byron has an impressive list of publications of poems and short stories and this is his first for the Seventh Quarry Press.
For each event that we put on tickets go quickly so book NOW to avoid disappointment The event is 6.30pm for a 7.00pm start and refreshments are available in the Birthplace (sorry no delivery service if you are on Zoom!)
A CHILD’S CHRISTMAS IN WALES
December 20th 2022 – 6.30pm for a 7pm start
Christmas in the Front Parlour of the Dylan Thomas Birthplace
Step into the heart of Dylan’s childhood as you take a trip down memory lane or imagine Christmases years ago while listening to the most famous and timeless Christmas story of modern times – A Child’s Christmas in Wales – and your magical trip takes you into the house – in the room – about which it was conceived. Where the author couldn’t remember “…whether it snowed for six days and six nights when I was twelve or twelve days and twelve nights when I was six…”!
Adrian Metcalfe of the Lighthouse Theatre Company will bring alive A Child’s Christmas in Wales in the front parlour of the Dylan Thomas Birthplace. Join us online in the parlour for this unique experience – imagine where the fat uncles sat down after Christmas dinner, fell asleep and snored while the thin aunts tiptoed around sipping parsnip wine and getting a bit tiddly because “…it was only once a year…”
A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas is published by Weidenfeld and Nicholson and performed by kind permission of the copyright holders The Dylan Thomas Trust
Also getting into the Christmas spirit will be the Cwmdonkin Ukes ukulele band with a great selection of Christmas favourites that you can sing along to wherever you are.
Each year tickets sell very quickly and this will be your only chance to marvel at Mrs Prothero’s turkey fire and cats! The performance is 6.30pm for 7pm stat. Zoom joining details will be emailed to you shortly before the event
4th November (6.30pm) – Launch of The Two Dylans
Jeff Towns in conversation with Alun Gibbard. Live in the parlour and on zoom
Join us for our first parlour event of the Autumn when we welcome author and antiquarian bookseller Jeff Towns who will be in conversation with broadcaster and Dylan expert Alun Gibbard about the fascinating new book about The Two Dylans – BOB DYLAN and DYLAN THOMAS
As the ultimate Rock ‘n’ Roll Poets, BOB DYLAN and DYLAN THOMAS represent two sides of the same coin. Bob Dylan made the music. Dylan Thomas lived the lifestyle. Both perfected the art of performed literature. Bringing together two of the foremost writers on each artist for the first time, THE TWO DYLANS takes us on a literary and literal path taken by Bob Dylan and Dylan Thomas.
There are so many strange and wonderful connections and coincidences; shared passions and associations that tie these two cultural icons – BOB DYLAN and DYLAN THOMAS together. This provides a rich tapestry – from the ancient Welsh folk tales of the Mabinogion to the poems of the Beat Generation; from Stravinsky to John Cale; from Johnny Ray to Charlie Chaplain. Rimbaud and Lorca, Sgt Pepper and The Bells of Rhymney, Nelson Algren and Tennessee Williams and much more.
Joining them and performing for the first time in the parlour will be the local folk duo Crow Hollow – Tony Webb and Rebecca Lowe – with their tribute to Bob Dylan
As well as being live in the parlour we also will be beaming it worldwide on Zoom so if you are a fan of one or both of the Dylans this is a ‘must go to’ event if it is our parlour or your own front room!
October 27th 2022 (1pm to 5pm) – Dylan’s 108th Birthday
We had an Open House to celebrate Dylan’s birthday.
We can only speculate what Dylan and his friends might have done to celebrate his birthdays in the house, but we do have an account of a birthday party that his daughter, the late Aeronwy, attended as a ten year old. Spam and Marmite sandwiches were on the table along with orange pop, Welsh cakes and a birthday cake covered in Smarties.
So why not come along – taste some party food, read a poem, sing a song or just have a sneak look around the house – it’s free but in true Dylan style we have a donation box. 1pm to 5pm.