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Dylan Thomas centenary celebrations get Hollywood treatment as Michael Sheen confirms involvement

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: August 27, 2014

Michael Sheen.

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HOLLYWOOD star Michael Sheen is to be one of the voices Swansea city centre visitors will soon hear reading extracts from Dylan Thomas poems.

The Frost/Nixon actor has confirmed he will be taking part in a project called Poems in October that will help mark the wordsmith's centenary this autumn.

The project will be made up of a series of minute-long recordings celebrating some of the most famous Dylan Thomas and William Shakespeare works of all-time. The train station, Swansea Market, the Grand Theatre, the No Sign Wine Bar and the Uplands Tavern are among the locations where the bite-size recordings will be installed. They will either be heard through concealed speakers or PA systems.

The Poems in October project, running from October 25 to November 9, is part of the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery's programme of off-site events and activities.

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Other texts to be recorded by Royal Shakespeare Company actors have been chosen by Crew, Swansea University's Centre for Research into the English Literature and Language of Wales.

Council cabinet member for regeneration Nick Bradley said: "It's fantastic news that Michael Sheen is on board for this exciting project – his voice is known across the world and will be instantly recognisable to the many thousands of people visiting Swansea city centre in late October and early November.

"It's also hugely apt that one of Swansea Bay's most famous contemporary sons will be reading an extract from the rich body of work of a man who arguably did more during his lifetime to put our area on the map than anyone else throughout the course of history."

Poems in October is one part of Swansea Council's year-long Dylan Thomas 2014 Festival.

Other features of the ongoing festival include the reopening of an upgraded permanent Dylan Thomas exhibition at Swansea's Dylan Thomas Centre.

The permanent exhibition is now temporarily closed while work to improve access, digitise artifacts and introduce new information about Dylan's life story takes place thanks to a major grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The permanent exhibition area will also be refurbished, and a new learning space and temporary exhibition room will be introduced.

Throughout its temporary closure, visitors can still access an ongoing Dylan notebooks exhibition until August 31 before the arrival of a new manuscripts exhibition on September 13.

An exhibition about Dylan's Swansea is also on at Swansea Museum.

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