Welsh soap opera YouTube showreel bid by US actor

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An American actor who has learnt Welsh via the internet has posted a showreel on YouTube in the hope of landing a part in the Welsh soap Pobol Y Cwm.

Dan Rhys, from California, is hoping his language-learning efforts will secure him a part on the long-running series, which is filmed at BBC Wales.

On the showreel he explains who he is before performing a variety of scenarios in Welsh.

Mr Rhys's family originally came from Llanbrynmair, Powys.

However there is no Welsh spoken in the immediate family now, so all his learning has been done online.

Mr Rhys is from Santa Clarita, north of Los Angeles.

The city owes more to the heritage of the wild west than the fictional soap village, Cwmderi.

Westerns featuring the likes of Gary Cooper, Roy Rogers and John Wayne were filmed around Santa Clarita, which has a star walkway honouring film and TV actors.

But Mr Rhys is looking more to the west of Wales to pursue his acting.

He told BBC Radio Cymru: "I learnt on the internet and I especially like the BBC's Big Welsh Challenge and I like to practise on [BBC learning Welsh website] Catchphrase. They've all been very useful.

"I can't practise with anybody and it has been difficult but I try my very best.

"I like the language so much, I won't let anything stop me.

"I learnt that my forefathers came from Llanbrynmair and I thought the best way to learn about the people was to learn the language and I liked the sound of the language so much.


"I like people who were on the Big Welsh Challenge, people like [actress] Catrin Brooks, and I decided to get more information on the Internet Movie Database and found this soap that had been running since 1974, before I was born.

"I went on YouTube to find our more and saw parts of the programme and it looked great, and I wanted to be on it."

A spokeswoman for BBC Wales said: "It's great to see that Pobol y Cwm appeals to such a wide audience. We'll take a look at Dan's tape."

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