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Rhodri Miles wins Hollywood award for Burton portrayal

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Laura Chamberlain Laura Chamberlain | 15:30 UK time, Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Rhodri Miles has won the Best International Artist award at the inaugural Hollywood Fringe Festival for his portrayal of Welsh icon Richard Burton.

Rhodri Miles as Richard Burton

Rhodri Miles in character as Richard Burton (images © Kirsten McTernan)

Burton is a one-man show, written by Gwynne Edwards and directed by Hugh Thomas, that showcases the life of the great Welsh actor.

It depicts Burton's often hilarious, melancholic, self-deprecating take on life from humble beginnings in Pontrhydyfen to Hollywood stardom, and culminates in his acrimonious first divorce from Elizabeth Taylor.

Miles, who has previously starred in Welsh dramas High Hopes, Torchwood, Pobol Y Cwm and film Eastern Promises, was born in Pontarddulais - just six miles away from Burton's birthplace.


He picked up the award while performing 11 shows at Theatre Asylum and Theatre of Note in Hollywood. Supported by Wales Arts International, he was the only Welsh representative at this year's Hollywood Fringe Festival.

Miles has performed Burton in various venues across Wales and also took the production to the 2009 Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

He said: "I've always wanted to play Richard Burton. He was a great thespian actor, an alcoholic womaniser who often said that his natural disposition to the Celtic gloom was caused by the mist in the hills and the black in the coal, all of it seeping into his very being.

"When you think of Welsh iconic figures, he's one of them."

Rhodri Miles will star in Burton at the Laugharne Millennium Memorial Hall on Saturday 28 August 2010 at 7.30pm.

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