Friday 23 October 2009

Alternative Views (2)

A less alternative view, but one that remains relatively unexplored, is the relationship between Kurwenal and Tristan in Tristan and Isolde. Generally Kurwenal is portrayed as the older retainer type, movingly devoted to his master. This is probably what Wagner wanted, but if you make him rather younger you can explore different views, including the one that Kurwenal is in love with Tristan (unrequited of course). I have seen one version of the opera, many years ago, where a younger Kurwenal brought this out a little without distorting the plot. Its something I'd like to see explored further, but opera productions in general seem to shy away from this sort of exploration.

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