bardic Pennsic SCAatHome

A Successful Bardic Showcase

So…the EK Midrealm Bardic Showcase went off with nary a hitch worth noting. That was spectacular. (Available on YouTube if you missed it, or want to see it agaion.) I want to take a moment to recognize all the effort that went into making this Pennsic highlight a reality in this unique moment.

First, to my fellow kingdom bards:

  • THL Honor von Atzinger, Dragon Bard, whose enthusiasm, delight, and communication to all the royals of the Known World made this possible, coupled her with her irresistible Master of Ceremonies skills.
  • Master Grim the Skald, Sovereign’s Bard who introduced me to the EK Bardic community once upon a time, thank you for bringing an experienced, steady, supportive hand, and a critical dose of zen. Your comfort sitting backstage and sharing the live stream audience feedback was wonderful for our composure and morale.
bardic Pennsic SCAatHome video

EK / Midrealm Bardic Showcase Tonight!

I’ve shared this elsewhere, but not here. (It’s under the wire, right?)

The Interkingdom Bardic Showcase is a long standing tradition held at Pennsic. It provides an opportunity for our kingdoms to come together and celebrate the performing arts. (Note: per tradition, the lineup of performers is pre-selected in consultation with the wishes of the SCA’s kingdom royals.)

This will be a YouTube livestream event (link here).

Join us for this year’s online Post-Pennsic showcase, featuring notable and rising performers representing various Kingdoms of the Known World:

concert filk Pennsic

Video from Pennsic: Carpe Diem f. Vincenzo da Brescia!

Last fall, when I started filking ABBA for Wilhelm and Vienna, I reached out to Vincenzo da Brescia (aka Vince Conaway), whose mastery of the hammered dulcimer delights listeners at Pennsic as well as at Renaissance Faires all over the country and internationally. The Mamma Mia filk demanded hammered dulcimer at the Pennsic concert, I suggested, and to my delight he agreed.

Vincenzo and I will be collaborating again soon on a recording for the album in progress, but in the meantime, here is “Carpe Diem” in its full, accompanied, silly glory.

concert Pennsic

Home from Pennsic (Pack Out Day!)

Just got home from Pennsic. For those of you who are on the road or unpacking, I thought I’d share this song from the concert on Monday (along with the song page).


Public service announcement

Because it seems to carry different weight coming from a man…

Harassing women in the street is not okay at Pennsic or anywhere else. It’s on the rise this year and we are all as a community responsible for keeping everyone safe. Here is a link to a bystander intervention guide.

The Pennsic community is beautiful and amazing. Everyone deserves to enjoy it without unwelcome attention, and if you don’t understand that, you’re going to learn it or we are going to remove you from this community.


Heading out to Pennsic

Our household will be departing for Pennsic this afternoon, and should be there by Saturday. If you are looking for me, here are some places you are likely to find me:

general Pennsic

PSA – Vaccinations and Pennsic

I started something on Facebook this morning that has gone viral, with the help of some fearless and outspoken friends. It occurred to me (and I’m sure I wasn’t the first to think of it) that recent measles outbreaks, the direct result of a decades-long drop in vaccination rates, could seriously imperil Pennsic this year–and that further, there is something we can do about it in the next three months if we raise awareness. My wife and I got our MMR boosters a few weeks back.

A measles outbreak among a population of 10,000 people would do irreparable harm to the SCA, and all the communities we’d be returning to. When in doubt, get your MMR booster. And discuss this with your camp. Everyone who can be vaccinated should be, there’s no excuse.

Feel free to save and share. (But don’t have a cow about it.)

For those who say “Pennsic schmensic, people should be vaccinating anyway!”, I agree. But if this raises awareness and moves people to action by creating new urgency, then I’m all for it. Thanks to everyone who is participating in this effort, and to everyone who has posted or commented that they’re getting tested or getting a booster shot.

Pennsic Uncategorized

Looking back at Pennsic 47

So, even by my sluggish standards, this Pennsic post is really late. We got home three weeks ago. There are a few reasons (excuses) why I didn’t jump on it right away:

  1. Between my job and rehearsals for The Mystery of Edwin Drood (which opens next weekend), I have been very busy and squeezed a bit hard on re-entry the last few weeks.
  2. I did do a few shares on this blog related to Pennsic, including two posts from war, a new song which recapped some of my experiences with a broad brush, and posting my full concert on YouTube.
  3. Because the Sing for the East project added songbooks to our offerings just in time for Pennsic, and we still had some inventory left when we got home, I felt like I was attending to unfinished Pennsic business for much of my first week back. (We did sell out quickly enough on Bandcamp, and have sent this year’s donation to the EK Royal Travel Fund.)

Nevertheless, it’s important to take time to reflect on a two-week event we only experience once a year, and I have lots of people to acknowledge (even if I have mentioned some of them previously).

bardic Pennsic recording

New Song: “Pack Out Day”

Hi everyone! We just got home from Pennsic yesterday, and to my surprise, as we began packing out, I felt a song coming on, and I went with it. So, as my way of thanking all of you for being part of my SCA experience, I’m breaking all my normal “rules” and sharing it with you right now. This is a quick a Capella vocal cut of the song, and it captures my experience of Pennsic this year, which involved my stretching a bit and doing more things that weren’t necessarily Bardic. (No, I still didn’t actually drink, but since the vast majority of adults I hung out with did, it’s still an indelible part of my experience of the War.)

I will set up a standard song page for this later (along with the other new songs I brought to the war, and class notes, and video from the concert–I promise I’ll get to it). But for now…enjoy!


Greetings from Pennsic!

Thought for once I’d post live. Not a LOT to say, but still, I’m awake early enough to check in. Some notes as we leave Peace Week behind:

  • Last night I attended the Worst Bardic Circle, Like, Evarrrrr. (That was actually the title–Efenwealt’s brain child.) We were all urged to confess our Bardic sins. So I unveiled the very first Drake Oranwood song I ever wrote, from before my time in the SCA (back when I spelled it “Orinwood”). It was basically Ren Fair fanfic. It passed muster for this circle. (No, I’m not performing it for you now.)
  • First Bardic Monday night was lovely (if rainy). Thursday night’s Chocolate Bardic at McGuire’s Marauders was probably my second favorite ever. (My favorite, the first Chocolate Bardic I ever went to, is unlikely to be surpassed. That was the first time I ever performed “Tam Lin of the Elves” at Pennsic, Heather Dale was in the audience, and when she expressed her admiration of the song, I mentioned I could imagine her singing the Elf Queen, and she crowed with delight. I met a few of my dearest friends that night. It’s a pretty high bar. Nevertheless, this one was excellent.)
  • The first session of “My Guitar’s Persona Is a Lute” on Thursday went beautifully, with an impressive turnout of eager students. Clearly, there is a thirst for how to do lute repertoire on guitar, and the reveal of how ridonkulously simple it is to adapt a guitar for the purpose appeared not to disappoint anyone.
  • My concert (Wednesday night from 8 to 9) is shaping up to be a fun one. This year’s Hamilton filk, which will feature my music friends Bird the Bard and Cedar the Barefoot, will now also include my son Spencer, who basically said to me the other day, “I want to be in ‘The Tomb Where It Happens'”, so how could I possibly say no? His turn as Mercutio should be a hoot (especially since he will ALSO be playing the roles of Isaac AND God that evening).
  • Oh, and speaking of Cedar…if you’re willing to pause on your way to Opening Ceremonies to catch The Barefoot Bard from 6-6:30 on the PA Stage tonight, you won’t be disappointed. And speaking of Lin-Manuel filk, their Moana filk promises to be hilarious. (And if you accuse me of putting them up to that I will cut you. Because true.)

Look forward to see you as we move into War Week!