Tristan and Yseult
The Irish princess Isolde is promised to King Marke of Cornwall. Together with her handmaiden Brangäne, she is escorted across the sea by the knight Tristan. Isolde’s lethal poison meant for Tristan is replaced with a love potion, and their passion leads them along a path to tragedy.
A variation on the Celtic legend of Tristan and Iseult, Wagner described the work not as an opera, but a drama – and ‘the most audacious and original work of my life’. Tristan und Isolde was enormously influential, and today is widely regarded as one of the greatest works in musical repertoire.