Yesterday, I saw the recent Stratford Festival production of Camelot at the Festival Theatre. Clicking on the link below or the picture above or link below will take you to a real review of the show that I agree completely with, so I’ll just skip to my personal comments.
For some reason, the whole King Arthur legend has always left me cold. It’s an odd thing, because while I love historical fiction, enjoy fantasy, and devour period pieces whenever I get the chance- I just can’t get into the whole King Arthur mythos or story. Even this play, which I greatly appreciated, still didn’t make me like the idea of the King Arthur legend that has entranced so many any more than I did before. (Although I’ll confess the ending did leave me a little misty-eyed, but that I credit more to the actors than the story.)
I guess perhaps it’s the un-reality of it all. The whole thing seems more like children playing at a game than a real piece of historical or fictional drama. The inclusion of magic with Merlin and Morgan le Fey makes it even worse, as we have a bunch of children playing with swords and a couple magic-users manipulating them. It never feels like a real story about real people, and I find no-one in this tale with whom I can connect emotionally.
Then again, maybe I just haven’t read or seen the right version.