Tristan and Iseult

One of the world’s oldest romances.

I don’t recall if I saw the film first with James Franco and  Sophia Myles, or read the myth in one of the illustrated books I grew up with. But I love the story: the romantic triangle between Tristan, Iseult and  King Mark; the ties of loyalty; the tension between the British and the Irish. Most of all I love how old it is and how many romances it has influenced since then.

Recently we saw it presented as a play at Shakespeare’s Globe by Kneehigh productions. It’s made for the outdoors and did well on the Globe stage. The actors all had other skills: ballet dancer, singer, flautist and so on. It was a great showcase of talent.

The love spotters were a funny interactive addition. The play took the interesting choice of highlighting the secondary characters, the unloved. It gave them greater depth and a louder voice, explored how they felt about they way they were treated or mistreated as the case may be. 

There is so much more to this story than made it to the film or the play. Looking forward to rediscovering it’s history in more detail.

Do you love Tristan and Iseult? What stories have stuck with you through the years?