Much has been written about the sociology of American acting and more recently there has been a discussion of the ways in which the need to rival Hollywood and the coming of television changed the nature of English acting tradition which had been essentially theatrical. We can now talk with confidence of a Welsh acting tradition. Although lacking a metropolitan centre, a culture in which both chapels and schools encouraged recitations and performance allowed an interest in amateur dramatics to develop. Eventually actors graduated from Wales to the glamour of London's West End and to the film studios. What did Welsh actors contribute to English- language theatre and cinema? More recently there have been new professional opportunities in Wales itself and consequently talented new generations of actors have been amphibious, working both at home in Wales as well as internationally. Each chapter will evoke an actor, assess their work and career and identify the social and psychological dimensions explored therein.
Peter Stead is a writer and broadcaster and has a lively and informed interest in stage and screen. He has written a biography of Richard Burton (Seren) and Dennis Potter (Seren) and is a board member of Sgrin (the Welsh Film agency). He was also editor of the successful Heart and Soul: The Character of Welsh Rugby.