The ancient Danes knew how to throw a party. That is, until the monster Grendel, pained by the sound of their joy, gatecrashes their hall and eats many of them. It is only when the hero Beowulf shows up and disarms Grendel - literally - that the festivities resume.
Danish storyteller Jesper la Cour Andersen has told the tale of Beowulf, which may be the oldest surviving epic poem in English, for 20 years. He has told it inside drafty mediaeval castles, upon the Siberian tundra and, memorably, aboard a reconstructed Viking longship at sea, trying to keep his balance amid narrow rowing benches rocked by waves.