StoryFest: Legends from around the world

Danish storyteller Jesper la Cour Andersen (left), with a fellow storyteller, performing Beowulf aboard reconstructed Viking ship the Sea Stallion.
Danish storyteller Jesper la Cour Andersen (left), with a fellow storyteller, performing Beowulf aboard reconstructed Viking ship the Sea Stallion.
Scottish-Kenyan storyteller Mara Menzies will perform The Illusion Of Truth at StoryFest.
Scottish-Kenyan storyteller Mara Menzies will perform The Illusion Of Truth at StoryFest. PHOTOS: MARA MENZIES, THE TELLING THEATRE

Storytellers will gather in Singapore next month for the second edition of StoryFest

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.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 22, 2018, with the headline 'Legends from around the world'. Print Edition | Subscribe