Last Saturday, I got to participate in the SCA in a way that I had never done before: running a full-day event. As Concordia’s Baronial Bard, I had the privilege of serving as event steward (or, as some say, “autocrat”) for the Winter Nights competition. The event, which had been a Concordian event for several years, recently changed to a three-year rotation between East Kingdom’s Northern, Southern, and Central regions. This is the first time it has come back to Concordia, and so it was a stroke of luck that it happened during my term as champion. While for many people, running an event is a key part of growing and evolving in the SCA, I have never yearned to have that responsibility. Given my ADHD (and my ego’s exhibitionist streak), the thought has been one I have long shied away from.
With one important exception. I have always dreamed of running Winter Nights.
This all-day bardic competition was my introduction to the bardic community five years ago. Winning it two years back was one of the most delightful surprises I’ve had as a bard. This event taught me about camaraderie, about improvisation, about the breadth of talent and skills and generosity that this kingdom’s bards (and not just this kingdom’s) have to offer. In many ways, it is as much home to me as Pennsic is. (Not for nothing did I slip a name-check into my East Kingdom anthem.)
Reminder: Winter Nights returns to Concordia in 3 weeks. Come to perform. Come to compete. Come to watch and listen. Come just for the joy of it!
Check out the EK event page or the Facebook event for more details.
After weeks of having to focus on Real Life, I’m doing some mad last-minute prep for this year’s concert (Monday of War Week, 8-9 pm, Performing Arts Tent), and I’m really excited.
The set this year is going to be really fresh. I mean really fresh. There will be stuff you’ve NEVER heard me perform before on this stage. And I’ve invited guests who are just getting known to the bardic scene…Cedar the Barefoot and Bird the Bard! (Don’t worry, Master Efenwealt is up for a song too.)
There will be three songs from Sing for the East. I am planning to actually play a lute piece.
And–oh yeah. The Hamilton filk. That too.
Hope to see you there!
I have now posted a song page for “Concordian Soil”, the new piece I debuted a week ago at Wars of the Roses.
Reminder: Bardic at Wars of the Roses this weekend will be held at the same time and place as last year, Saturday 8:30 pm at the Bardic area. The theme of the competition is legitimacy to rule. See you there.
In service, Drake
Announcing the Bardic competition for the Wars of the Roses!
The Wars of the Roses were a 30 year conflict fought over who had the legitimate claim to the throne of England.
In the Medieval period, no less than our present day, the people’s belief in the legitimacy of their ruler was crucial to maintaining peace and prosperity.
Your challenge is to bring to the competition a piece on the topic of legitimacy: how it is conveyed, earned, created, or projected (or not), and why that matters (or doesn’t) in the outcome of the story you are telling.
Drake Oranwood, Baronial Bard, Concordia of the Snows