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Slideshow

Creating “Hidden Gold”

(This article is first in a series of articles about SCAdians and their adventures in producing CDs. For more info, see yesterday’s intro post.)

By Eric Schrager / Lord Drake Oranwood

I just released my first album of bardic music, Hidden Gold. I’m selling it to raise money for a worthy cause (more about that below). Sophia asked me to write an article on what it was like making this project happen. I spent about two and half years from the time I first seriously considered the idea of making an album to the finished release. I can only speak to my own experience, but this is what it looked like for me. To get there, I had to answer a series of questions:

Why do I want to make an album?
What was compelling about this as a project, that I would want to do this as an SCA hobbyist? I love being an SCA bard, but that’s because I love performing and the SCA makes it so easy to do. “You’re a bard? Awesome! Sing us something? You know, just stand up and give us a piece.” No instrument needed, no band, no speakers. Just get up and do it. You can play an instrument, and many do, but even most of them don’t do it all the time. So why would I want to record an album? That’s a whole other level of effort.

For me, the answer was that much as I love performing, I love writing even more. I’ve always wanted to be a writer of some kind, and over the years I’ve realized that songwriting is my most preferred form. I won’t go into all the reasons (I’ve laid those out in a class I teach on the subject), but I love it and it is one of the things I do best. I consider myself a better songwriter than I am a singer. And, like any writer, I want to get my work out there. In the time I spent in the SCA, it became pretty clear that what gets a song “out there”, where people know it, and request it, and want to sing it themselves, is the same thing that gets a song out there in the mundane world: a recording. There is a small but very real market here in the Society for recorded bardic music, and people love the songs they hear on their bardic CDs. Yes, you can post a YouTube video of a performance at an event (and I have), and that can get a song out there. But I’d never done a complete full-scale creative work of my own–a book, a play, an art show, what have you. I wanted to make a thing. And I wanted that thing to capture my songs the way I hear them in my head.

Did I want to make money on this? No. (And a good thing too, because that would have been really silly of me. There’s barely any money in commercial music, let alone niche stuff like this, if you have a day job.) But I wanted to sell this, since I believe art has value, and people appreciate the value more when they are asked to pay for it. My wife and I quickly decided there was a cause worth raising money for: The Therapeutic Nursery, a preschool for bright special needs kids that helped our son cope with his developmental challenges and develop social and school readiness skills. We were lucky enough that our school district had sponsored the program for us. Most won’t, and with school cuts of the last few years many can’t, even when it’s the perfect approach for a kid who really needs it. We couldn’t imagine a better use of any money we might make. (As people pointed out later, it also makes a really good selling point when promoting the thing.)


Do I have enough really good material for a complete album?

This was tricky. I’d written only three songs when I decided to get serious about becoming a bard. I’d written other kinds of songs for years, but SCA music is its own thing, and for me, at least, songs aren’t things I just bat out in an afternoon. Once in a while, but not normally. For me, a piece I would consider worth recording usually takes about a month to write. I need the right inspiration, I have to put all the pieces together, and I need to revise and polish it until I’m really happy with it. Daily life, and raising a child, had left me with little time to focus on that for a number of years, but now that my son was school age, and old enough to enjoy the SCA, I could make time. And friends and patrons were encouraging me to up my output. So in this first real year of the project (and as a member of the Pennsic bardic community, I measure a bard year as the span between one Pennsic and the next), I set myself the task of a song a season. In the end, I managed to produce six new songs, bringing me to nine. That was getting close.


I wanted to have 12 tracks on the album. A practical consideration: In the age of digital music, where it’s easy to just buy one song, an album is a little more compelling if it’s cheaper than buying track by track. So how to get from 9 to 12? I had an idea for another song, and I had a title and a chorus: “Hidden Gold”. As I reflected on it, I realized that was the title I wanted for the album. I just had to write it. Later, working with a patroness and a teacher, I got the suggestion to use a double sonnet I’d written years before as a spoken word piece, and I learned a John Dowland song that I really liked. In the end, I realized that spoken word and period music would be great additions to a bardic album, so I had my track list.

What sort of sound am I shooting for?
This is a big consideration. Many bardic albums are performed with little or no instrumentation, much the way most live bardic performances sound. Certainly making an album just of what I could actually do myself would make it a lot easier. And while I have taken lessons in a few instruments, I don’t play anything at performance level, so that would be a conundrum. Because I realized two things: (a) I wanted to make a professional-sounding album, or not bother. And (b), I grew up listening to Broadway soundtracks. So what I hear in my head when I write and sing my own songs, it’s pretty rich and full. I wanted that. I wanted other people to hear the woodwind trills, the deep cello counterpoint, the driving acoustic strumming, that played in my head on these songs. Which led me to the next question.

Who can help me make this a reality?
I was going to need some serious help to make this happen. I wanted serious instrumentation that I couldn’t play, and production values I didn’t know how to capture. I was going to have to ask for help.

This was the step that had stopped me back when I was writing modern pop music. I didn’t know who to ask, or how to ask, or how to make it worth someone’s while to work with me on a project this scale. Doing it in the SCA, however, it is as surprising how to easy it was to get help. And don’t get me wrong, I got lucky. Having two old friends, one who played guitar and had experience recording rock music with GarageBand, the other (Arden of Icombe) who had become a music Laurel and could play and arrange music for virtually any period instrument you could name? That was insane luck. But. But. I asked them. And showed them my songs. And they liked them. And said yes.

I told them it was a passion project, and that I’d be donating the proceeds. Honestly? They didn’t care. They liked the music, they were intrigued by the challenge of bringing this to life. I was going to find out how many people would respond to just that: the challenge and fun of a creative project, and the pleasure of being asked. Everyone I asked, without exception, felt flattered that I thought of them. And in the end, for all the work they were going to invest in this project, I was going to be investing more. Because that was the next question:

How badly do I want to do this? What am I willing to invest to make it happen?
There are two main currencies available: time and money. It ends up being a combination of both, of course. But I chose to put nearly all the equity in via my own time. Part of the reason was, having chosen to donate the proceeds, I wanted there to be proceeds to donate, which meant minimizing the expenses. But also I wanted to learn how to do it. And I wanted this to sound the way I wanted it, and no one was going to be able to read my mind better than me. Over the first few months, I watched my friend Dave do the recording, editing and mixing in GarageBand, using decent consumer-level equipment. I learned from him, and quickly took over the process. After a certain point, I saw that I had to, because getting one of my collaborators into my basement studio was much easier to schedule than getting both of them. Which brings me to the next question:

What’s my deadline to deliver this? How do I make sure I get things done on time?

Originally I had the idea to shoot for Pennsic 43, but along the way, my wife suggested I push it back a year and finish in time for Pennsic 44. But then, my wife is a lot smarter then I am.


So I worked backward from Pennsic, picked people’s brains, found out what I would need to do at the tail end of the project (more about that later), and set targets for myself. I aimed to finish all the instrumentals by February or March of 2015, which would give me plenty of time for the end game. (And it left room for schedule slippage. I didn’t finish all of them until late April and was still in good shape.)

Toward the end, I set time aside to work on my lead vocals, since my own time was the thing I had most of. (I probably should have put in more time on those earlier in the project, but I found the process very challenging and procrastinated a lot.)

Crucially, I asked for commitments around the end game items I was going to need help with late in 2014, so I didn’t end up with any critical eleventh-hour surprises that made me miss my target.

Giving myself enough time to get it done the way I wanted was important. And waiting an extra year meant I was able to learn how to do the producing part much better, and was able to get all the time I needed from my collaborators without having to be too stressed or pushy. Which allowed me to address the next question.


How do I reach my goal for quality? do I know when I’m there (or close enough)?
The extra time I gave myself opened up space for a lot of additional collaboration that made the finished product that much better. I was able to realize my dream of having Heather Dale record the vocals for the Faerie Queen on “Tam Lin of the Elves”, since we hosted a house concert for her, and (as I expected) she was thrilled to be able to just have me record her with my equipment rather before they left, rather than have to find time back home to do it for me. It opened up time to find the four female harmonies I wanted for “Lady of the Rose”, giving that song exquisite sweetness, but literally the feminine voice it required to sound best.

The biggest part of getting the quality I wanted was continuing to ask for help. Almost nobody I asked told me no. Everyone had something to offer, even if it was just advice. I realized I wanted to get a mastering engineer to master the album properly, because otherwise all the effort I’d put into the sound was still going to result in a product that fell short of my hopes. A friend connected me to another friend, Neil Fein, who was willing to support my donation project at a special rate, and who gave me feedback on all my mixes so I could get them better. I got some voice coaching from Olivia Baker, a brilliant singer who did some vocals for the album. I ended up forming a small committee to review all the tracks and give me honest feedback about where I could improve things, and reworked the edits and the mixes and my vocals to get things still better. I ended up upgrading from GarageBand to Logic Pro X, which gave me more powerful tools to enhance things further.

And, in the end, as several people had told me, I had to just stick to my deadline, and know there would be a point where I wasn’t totally satisfied with a bunch of things. But since I had focused my efforts for the precious few months on the tracks with the biggest issues, and worked again and again to raise each boat, in the end I knew I’d be pleased with the results. (And even if, as the sausage maker, I might never be satisfied, I had to trust that if my committee was largely happy with how it sounded, listeners would be happy with it too.)

I handed it off to Neil for mastering, and accepted I had done everything I could do, and it was time to put my hands up and step away.


How do I finish it so everything is really done?
Because I’d been talking to people throughout the process, I knew there were key steps left when the mastering was done that would need to be addressed. So I was ready for those and had done my research. The end game included:
  • The album cover. My wife reached out to Countess (now Crown Princess) Caoilfhionn, and arranged a professional photo shoot for the cover photos. She was brilliant, creative, and very sweet (can’t recommend her enough), scouting out a great location, and coaxing good shots out of me, and I don’t consider myself photogenic. I reached out to my good friend Aneleda Falconbridge (who designed the cover for her own album, I Am of the Norththe previous year) to do my design. Graphic design is what she does, and does well. Her concept, very different from what I expected, showed me she understood the intention and tone of my project.
Hidden Gold CD Art-04 Hidden Gold CD Art-01
  • Copyright. You don’t have to, but if you’re going to sell your work, I think you should submit your original work and your recordings for copyright. The copyright office makes it pretty easy to do it all online, and it doesn’t cost that much.
  • CD manufacturing. Aneleda and Efenwealt Wystle suggested I check out Kunaki. They do on demand CD manufacture using an online loading process. It is the least expensive way for an independent artist to manufacture a professional-looking CD. Read the FAQs and mind the caveats. It was a reasonable option for me.
  • Distribution. There are many online distributors who can sell digital downloads and distribute an album to the outlets of your choice (iTunes, Google Music, Amazon, Spotify). I went with CD Baby, because I liked their distribution options and their interface.

How do I get people to buy it?

Once it was all done, there were things I needed to do to let people know about it, and establish demand. This was where asking for help was really key. People who’ve been there before, such as Efenwealt Wystle and my teacher Mistress Zsof, had lots of good advice about how to get the word out.
  • A release party. This isn’t that common, actually, but since Arden, my music arranger, was up for it, he recruited several friends, rehearsed the songs, and we had a live concert in my house the day of the release. I ended up with about 30 people there, not counting the band. It was fun, if exhausting, and we sold a decent bit of product there. (If you’re going to do this, make sure you have a good permanent marker to sign stuff with, people will want that, and having come out to celebrate with you, they certainly deserve it.)
  • Singles. SoundCloud and YouTube provide great ways for people to find your music online, and you can share them with people without making them available for download.
  • Airplay. Of course, this is the SCA, so how do you do that? Well, as of right now, there is The Knowne World Bardcast, a podcast dedicated to the bardic arts in the SCA, and Gideon ap Stephen has devoted a lot of effort to make it happen. He was kind enough to get one of my favorite tracks into an episode of the podcast the week before the release, which meant serious fans of Bardic got to hear it.
  • A little help from your friends. I reached out to my teacher, and well-connected friends, who were kind enough to spread the word. Heather Dale, of course, has a well-established fanbase, and having her involved with the project was a tremendous blessing in getting people’s attention.
  • Event merchants. For Pennsic, I’ve found a couple of merchants who are happy to carry the album (Camelot Treasures and Master Kenhelm, in case you’re wondering). It’s crucial to have the product where people can find it at big events.
  • Advertising. My plan is to take Efenwealt’s advice and advertise in The Pennsic Independent and on Facebook leading up to the War.
  • Performances. If you’ve gone to the trouble of recording, you should find venues to perform. I’ll be doing a one-hour concert on Sunday of War Week at Pennsic, performing mostly songs from the album. Again, I’ve asked for help: Efenwealt will be joining me onstage to provide some accompaniment, and Heather will be reprising her duet with me from the album. Based on their experiences, this is vital to stoke demand.

So that is my experience to date. It has been an amazing ride, and I’m really glad to have gone through it. And I’m really looking forward to taking a break from it all when Pennsic is over.

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Bards, Recording, and CD Production in the SCA

Performing artists have been able to produce CDs independently since around the 1990’s with equipment that’s affordable and understandable by many people.  A professional level of training, equipment, and funding has not been necessary for decades to get your music, stories, lectures, or other kind of audio recording into a CD format and distributed to the people who share your interests.  The journey, however, is still a long and arduous one for any artist questing for that golden ring of the CD. Time equals money, so an artist can try to make up for lack of one by investing with the other, but both are required.  There are numerous recipes for success, and an artist will have to make many choices along the way taking into account their own priorities, resources, and goals.

In Atlantia, numerous bards have produced their own CDs, shared beautiful music and stories with us, and contributed to the ability of our populace to memorize lyrics to our favorite tunes. They and other musicians throughout the SCA have also produced CDs that help expand our understanding and enjoyment of SCA period music, music inspired by period themes, use of period dance music, and encouraged performers of all kinds to participate in the SCA performing arts community.

So, where do you start if you want to produce a CD?  If you’re a SCAdian who’s been bitten by the CD bug, where do you even begin?  As of this writing, the Complete Anachronist has not yet published an issue on “How to Publish A CD for SCAdians”, and there is no single authoritative web page on the best way to do it.  We are, however, blessed with a strong community of bards and other performers who thrive on supporting each other.  Many of these folks have produced CDs and are willing to tell their stories.

This blog post is the first in a series of blog posts written by SCAdians who have produced their own CDs. Reading their stories will be a key piece of the education necessary for any SCAdian who wishes to begin their own journey to producing their own CD.  What used to be a quest to meet as many CD-producing bards at Pennsic or Gulf Wars or Lillies or wherever you could find them and pick their brains about how they did what they did will hopefully be transformed into this series of blog posts.  I still encourage any questing would-be-CD-producers to find folks who have already produced a CD before to hear their stories, but maybe your time can be better spent in creative Q&A after reading their story here first.

We’re going to touch on a very wide range of topics in this series: recording equipment, logistics, printing and reproduction, finances, solo and group work, online publishing, copyright, merchanting in the SCA, the creative process, inspiration and muse, original work vs. not, documentable-to-SCA-period work vs. not, production value of CDs, audiences, SCA vs. outside-SCA, purpose & drive, and more I’m sure I can’t predict. We will touch on these topics, and there is no way we will completely cover them since CD production is a huge, neverending world. Please enjoy these articles as a place to start and nurture your CD journey.   If you have questions you’d like answered about the quest to produce a CD, please add a comment to this or the following blog posts. I’ll do my best to get your questions answered and include your suggestions.

Thank you for participating in the Performing Arts Community!

Lady Sophia the Orange

Kingdom of Atlantia’s Deputy Minister of Arts and Sciences for Performing Arts

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The new Kingdom Bard of Atlantia, Lord Johann von Solothurn!

Lords and Ladies of Atlantia – pay heed! The new Kingdom Bard of Atlantia, the highest representative of the most noble art of performing in all the kingdom, presents himself to you!

Coronation Bear Pit Bards Spring 2014

Lord Johann shown here in the front row with the guitar at the Bardic Bear Pit of Spring Coronation 2014!

Lord Johann von Solothurn is a bard and musician. As a bard, he performs both period and SCA-themed music, and he writes original SCA- and period-themed songs (some of which are serious, others not so much). As an instrumentalist, he performs period guitar, lute and vihuela pieces. He plays mostly on classical guitar or sometimes on a reproduction five-course guitar. He is currently exploring composition for the four-course and five-course guitar. Johann also believes that the kazoo is seriously underrated as an instrument.

Prior to being selected as Kingdom Bard for 2015, Johann served as Black Diamond’s Bardic Champion in the court of Their Excellencies Aldemere and Juliana from 2012 to 2015. Johann has organized entertainment for events, sponsored and judged bardic competitions, and taught bardic-related classes, including Bardic 101/102, History of the Guitar, and Late Period Music for the Lute, Vihuela and Guitar. Johann resides in the Barony of Black Diamond, with his Lady, Helena Isabelle de Soleure and their son Jakob von Solothurn. Johann can be contacted at johann_von_solothurn@yahoo.com.

So… that’s what Johann wrote about himself…

Now, I’m here to tell you that this gentleman has some significant shoes to fill in following the yearlong act of awesome that was the year our good friend Lady Scholastica Joycours served as Kingdom Bard 2014. I am, however, completely confident that he will bring his own magnificent skills and joy for performing to this position. I know this because every time I’ve heard Johann talk about music, he’s mentioning some new tune he’s written or old tune he’s revisited, which kind of tablature it comes from, and which period musician inspired it. I knew he was “one of us” crazy bards when he mentioned that his music talks to him. In his response to the Artchain Challenge on the Book of Face, he said “The original song was in 3/4 time and really begged to be a galliard tune.” I can see it now… “PLEASE Johann! Make me a galliard! Please! You know you want to!”

So, in case you haven’t enjoyed the beautiful music or amusing antics of the magnificently talented Lord Johann von Solothurn, your first chance to see him as Kingdom Bard is at the Tournament of Ymir in the fine Barony of Windasters’ Hill this Saturday, February 28th (http://ymir.windmastershill.org). He is running a Viking Bardic Challenge at 2:00pm and also taking on the challenge of accepting a green apprentice belt from the legendary Master Efenwealt. Be there to help him escape or cheer him on!
(You also don’t want to miss the even more legendary Mistress Dervila (because she tells legends) take on her own apprentice in Lady Morgan Wolfsinger at the same circle!)

We are in for another year of enriching bardic wonders from the Kingdom Bard, so watch this space for announcements so you don’t miss a thing! – Sophia The Orange

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Upcoming Atlantia Events with Activities for Performers!

1) Nottinghill Coil’s Baronial Birthday event on February 20-22 in Bennettsville, SC: https://sites.google.com/site/ncbb34/arts-sciences

Performing arts activities there include: Friday night dance practice and informal bardic at the “Tavern”, dance and dessert revel after feast on Saturday night organized by Baron Geldamar le Farceur, a bardic circle on Saturday night in the breezeway of the Whispering Pines Yellow cabins using the “Pick, Pass, or Play” format organized by Chung Tai Ren.

 

2) Brunch with the Bards in the Barony of Ponte Alto on February 21 in Reston, VA: http://pontealto.atlantia.sca.org/events/bardbrunch.php

A multitude of performing opportunities and classes on performing happening all day! So many, I can’t even type up a summary.  I’ll just rely on mentioning that the teachers for these classes include our current Poeta Atlantia, our recently stepped down 2014 Kingdom Bard, and a few of the highest quality Laurels involved in poetry and bardic arts our fair kingdom has to offer! If you’re into poetry, singing, or general performing guidance, you can’t beat a day spent in Ponte Alto on Feb 21!

 

3) Tournament of Ymir in the Barony of Windmasters’ Hill on February 27 – March 1 in Reidsville, NC:  http://ymir.windmastershill.org/index.php

Ymir is a huge event, and the performing activities include:  afternoon bardic competition at 2:00pm in the merchants area, a commedia play performance by i Firenzi starting at 3:30pm in the big hall, European dancing starting 30 minutes after feast ends, and a bardic circle using the Pick, Pass, or Play format also starting 30 minutes after feast ends.

 

4) Kingdom A&S Festival on March 7 in Wallace, NC  : http://kasf.atlantia.sca.org/

Performers do have a place at the KASF!  Pre-determined activities include the Gyrth Oldcastle Poetry Smackdown and the performance of a period commedia dell’ arte scenario by i Firenzi.  Performances are also a part of the Persona Pentathlon and Triathlon.  Also, Lady Katarzyna Witkowska will be teaching a special class on Francois Villon, a 15th Century French poet.  For any questions about how to work in a performance you want to bring, contact the Autocrat, Mistress Mordeyrn Tremayne, with the email provided on the web page.

 

5) Of course, Gulf Wars, March 15-22 in Lumberton, MS, abounds with performing opportunities and classes, so if you’re going, just check out the web page for Performing Arts http://www.gulfwars.org/index.php/gw-activities/arts-sciences/performing-arts  and stop by the Sable and Gules Theater and the Green Dragon Inn while you’re there!

 

If you have questions or other events to suggest to performers, please leave a comment here on this blog and I’ll find you an answer and promote your event!

Sincerely yours,

Lady Sophia the Orange

Atlantia Kingdom Minister for Arts and Sciences Deputy for Performing Arts

 

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Herein contains a report on the performing arts activities made known to me for two Atlantian events on the day of January 24, 2015:

The Barony of Storvik held the event “Storvik Song and Dance – All The World’s A Stage” where a wide variety of performances entertained the people including dance, music, theater, and more!

This portion of the report is submitted by Lady Teleri the Well-Prepared (and boy is she!).

First, Their Excellencies of Storvik, Griele and Badouin, opened the event, welcoming all to the hall.

Yves de Fortanier, come from Meridies, and Mirabella taught an Absolute Beginner Dance Class lasting one hour.

The populace, having ignored the rows of chairs facing the stage in favor of the tables along the walls, dictated a shift in venue for the performances from the stage to the dance floor. (Note to the populace: if chairs are set up on purpose for performances by the events staff, chances are good they will provide you the best view of the performance.  Note to event staff: if the populace votes with their feet regarding where they want to sit, regardless of your best laid plans, make note of their behavior and adjust plans for the next event. Ed.)

In the first block of performances, each 20 minutes in length:

  • Lady Swannoc Beag regaled the hall with a story of her experiences with the Ghost of the Dulin Waters, the eye(s) of St. Amblyopia, and the power of compassion.
  • Lord Richard Wyn sang, with and without his guitar, songs of the current Middle Ages and the Tudor era.
  • Members of Clan Cambion (having recorded their names without their many honorifics as Igor, Fevronia Murometsa, Volodya of Cambion, Gwaithin of Cambion, and James of Rutland) did perform harmonies both rousing and sublime.

Yves de Fortanier did teach the dances “Goddesses” and “Hide Park” in a class lasting one half hour.

In the second block of performances, each as long as those in the first set:

  • Vagando Stolti, a commedia dell’arte troupe in Lochmere, did perform three most humorous sketches, alerting the audience to the dangers of feeding one’s dragon energy drinks.  Their names be given as Avelina del Dolce, James Butler, Constanza de Talavera, Kalie, and Deryk LeGard.
  • Three Left Feet, a dancing troupe who form the third pillar of Storvik’s Monday practices along with the heavy and rapier fighters, exhibited their precision and grace.  Their names be given as Fred Blonder, Eowyn Ellison, Dale Neiburg, and Melinda Grotsinger.
  • Lord Maugorn the Stray, playing tambourine, guitar and harmonica all at once, sang a trio of pieces.  At one point, needing a member of the audience to play the vuvuzela, Baron Baduin did volunteer – and revealed that Storvik’s ring-giver is a man of many talents, including the playing of trumpets!
  • Lady Gwen of Lochmere sang some Tudor era songs.  For the first, she was accompanied by Lord Watkin of Kent on mandolin.  Despite the duet being unrehearsed, it was a most delicate and pleasing sound.

Avelina del Dolce did teach Beginning 15th Century Italian Dances, being “Petit Vriens” and “Amoroso,” in a class lasting one half hour, or somewhat more.

In the final block of staged performances:

  • Master Rhuaidhri an Cu told tales and sang songs to the delight of all.
  • Lady Scholastica, having so recently laid aside the responsibilities of Royal Bard, amused and edified the populace with a tale of foolish Jack and his many attempts to bring his wages home.
  • The Performing Artists’ Guild Extraordinaire (PAGE) of Bright Hills played several pieces in a consort of harp, mandolin, and flute.  Their names be given as Yseulte Trevelyn, Reyne Telarius, and Bridgette Cunningham.

Finally, before feast, there was a basic beginner’s dance class.

Many musicians did lend their skill on behalf of the dancers.  With Lord Maugorn the Stray acting as the apparent ringleader, the others whose names I recorded are: Patricia of Trakai, Watkin of Kent, Rose, James of Rutland, Cynthia Anne of Silverlakes, Donal Sutton, Sir Jeff Schmitt, Barbara Schmitt, and Lisbeth of Spinning Winds.

After the potluck feast, I retired to the bardic circle, where 11 good gentles kept company with songs, stories, music and poetry.  I cannot speak to the attendance at the Grand Ball, being as I was not present for it.

All errors, mis-spellings of names, and absent honorifics are my own, and I plead that they are not from any malice but rather the perpetually harried state of the deputy autocrat.

All in all, I have heard that slightly fewer than eighty gentles passed the day with us in good cheer, despite the threat of foul weather.  Their Excellencies of Storvik pronounced themselves well-pleased with the efforts of Lady Sonya (aka: Patches) – indeed, elevating her into their Order of the Lozulet for all her good works – and they desire that the event occur again in the next year.

This being an account as true as I can make it.  Teleri the Well-Prepared; Deputy Autocrat for Performance, Storvik Song and Dance

This portion of the report on dance at Storvik Song and Dance was prepared by Lady Sonya, aka: “Patches”

  • Beginner Dance class taught by Mirabella Walmesley of Grimsby and Yves de Fortanier included Belle Qui Pavanne, Black Alaman, and Hearts Ease.
  • Advanced English Country Dance taught by Yves de Fortanier included Goddesses and Hyde Park.
  • 15th Century Italian Dance taught by Avelina del Dolce.  She did Petit Vriens and Amroso.

More general dance dictated by student requests was taught by Yves, Mirabella, and Patches.

The ball ran for almost 3 hours, with 3 sets.  We did the following dances:

FIRST SET

  • Belle Qui Pavanne
  • Montard Bransle
  • Sellenger’s Round
  • New Boe Peep
  • Black Nag
  • Horse’s Bransle
  • Black Alman
  • Petit Vriens

SECOND SET

  • Gathering Peasecods
  • Amoroso
  • Washer Woman’s Bransle
  • Hide Park
  • Ly Bens Distonys
  • Upon A Summer’s Day

THIRD SET

  • Rufty Tufty
  • Heart’s Ease
  • Rostiboli Gioioso
  • Chestnut
  • Gelosia

Ice Castles Barony of Black Diamond Bardic Competition report – contributions by Their Excellencies Black Diamond and Their Current Bardic Champion, Lord Johann von Solothurn:

Baron Girard and Baroness Maaline had the privilege of observing the bardic competition in the afternoon as well, and after careful consideration they decided that a further competition was needed before a decision regarding the Black Diamond new baronial bardic champion could be made. A second round of competition and decision will be had at Seven Hills Skirmishes (http://acorn.atlantia.sca.org/event_flyer.php?event_id=3a8e3553) on March 21 in Lynchburg, VA .

 

If you have questions about anything posted above or wish to add or offer corrections, please post a comment below!

Sincerely yours

Sophia the Orange

Tagged with:

Filed under: Commedia dell' ArteDanceEvent Reports

After many months of technological wanderings, the Performing Arts Blog for the Kingdom of Atlantia is ready for launch!  Email subscriptions and RSS feeds are now ready for users to submit and manage so they can stay 100% up to date with the happenings of performing arts in Atlantia!  I’d like to thank the Kingdom Web Minister, Master Talorgen, and my extremely patient and skilled husband, Manus MacDhai, for helping me get the technology speed bumps conquered.  Now we can get on with the fun!

This blog will function as an announcements venue and also as a content management system where the performing arts community of our fair kingdom can come together to share information, keep in touch, and support each other!

Suggestions, comments, and wild praise are welcome!  Either post a comment here or email dmoas-performance AT atlantia.sca.org with your requests and contributions.

Watch this space! More to come!

Sincerely Yours,

Lady Sophia the Orange

Atlantia Kingdom Deputy Minister of Arts and Sciences for Performing Arts

Filed under: Announcements

It’s finally ready!  Here it is!  The Kingdom of Atlantia finally has a blog for helping those of the populace who are interested in performing arts to keep up to date and collaborate!

Atlantians can subscribe to this blog via email or RSS to get announcements about performing arts happening in our fair kingdom.  If you are interested in being a Guest Blogger, please do send what you want to post to the administrator, Sophia the Orange, at dmoas-performance AT atlantia.sca.org and include any deadlines or events associated with the content.

Please be sure to see the Social Media Communities tab for the other many ways you can stay in touch online!

Do not hesitate to make a suggestion or ask for information by emailing Sophia at dmoas-performance AT atlantia.sca.org or leaving a comment on a blog post.  This blog will continually change and adjust to the needs of the ever changing performing community of Atlantia.  Let me know what you want to see here, and I’ll do my best to get it up here.

Thank you for your continued attention, and keep watching!

Sincerely yours,

Lady Sophia the Orange

Atlantia Kingdom Deputy Minister of Arts and Sciences for Performing Arts

Filed under: AnnouncementsCommedia dell' ArteDanceDance MusicDocumentationEuropean DanceFarcesGulf WarsInstrumental MusicMiddle Eastern DanceNetworkingPennsicPoetryShakespeareSingingSongwritingStorytellingTheater

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