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Tell Play Interlaken Legends and their artistic marketing

William Tell plays in Interlaken have a long tradition. Markus Bertschi and Severin Jakob took a journey through the Middle Ages as part of their book project.

Halberds, torches and knights' helmets meet stuffed chamois mountain goats, fake beards and state-of-the-art lighting technology: Friedrich Schiller's drama "Wilhelm Tellexternal link" is performed annually from June to mid-September in Interlaken in the open air. In 1912 a teacher staged Tell's play with his class for the first time. Since then, with an interruption during the World Wars, the play has been performed regularly, and since 1954 has become a permanent fixture.

Around 130 amateur actors and actresses take part in the production. In addition to residents from the region, asylum seekers and people with disabilities are also part of the cast and crew. In their book project “Fabulous!”, Zurich photographers Severin Jakobexternal link and Markus Bertschiexternal link travelled to Interlaken. They went behind the scenes to uncover the fact and fiction behind the legend.

Besides William Tell, they also pursued Robin Hood and Sherlock Holmes, looked for Nessie and were captivated by the vampire Dracula. Their journey captures not just the beauty, but also the commercial side of mythical venues.