Northshielders Accept Bardic Challenge

Residents of the Kingdom of Northshield have the chance to showcase their performance skills at an upcoming Bardic Challenge. Instructors are also needed.

THL Eliane Halevy, Provost of Bardic Madness XV, writes:

Greetings unto the Bards and Bardic Fans of the Kingdom of Northshield and beyond!

My apologies for being a bit late in publicizing the Challenge list for Bardic Madness XV, to be held March 5 in the Shire of Shattered Oak (in Black River Falls, WI). The Challenges follow.

If you would like to serve as a Patron for a Challenge, contact me as soon as possible via e-mail ( ). These spots go quickly, so don't wait too long! A patron emcees a challenge and provides a small token to each participant. I can use a few alternates too, in case of patrons who aren't able to make it at the last minute. I will NOT be at Nordskogen Twelfth Night this weekend, so please contact me via e-mail (my phone number is at the bottom of this message in case your e-mail access is spotty).

Don't worry if you are too late to get a spot as a patron. All attendees are invited to hand out their personal tokens to anyone whose performance impresses them.

So far I have two classes scheduled. We have room for 8 (4 each in two one-hour periods). Classes should be related in some way to the performing arts, in the areas of literature, poetry, music, drama, performance techniques/coaching, composition/creativity, or bardic arts practice in the SCA. If you'd like to teach a class, please contact me with the following information:

  • Your name (inc. any titles)
  • Name of class
  • Description of class
  • Any class size limits, pre-requisites, or things people should bring
  • Would you prefer to teach late morning or early afternoon?
  • Any special needs
  • Is this a class that needs quiet (a room to itself), or could it share a large room?

Without further ado, the Challenges (exact times are still subject to change):

  • Fyt the first, 9:45-10:45:
    Ensemble Tale: The Journey as I Saw It
    All those who wish to participate get up together, and tell a tale from beginning to end, with the patron 'conducting' by pointing to the person whose turn it is to continue the tale, and deciding when it is time to end. The title of the story is "Deep in the Forest". You might get pointed at multiple times, so be ready! Patron: THL Dahrien Cordell

    Moose, moose, I like a…
    There is a huge orange moose on the property of our event site. How could this possibly have come to be? Tell a tale, in any format, of how the orange moose came to live in this remote corner of Shattered Oak. Originator: Kudrun the Pilegrim; patron:

    Bring your Axe (let's hear your chops)
    Bring any instrument, and accompany yourself as you perform a spoken or sung piece. Stretch yourself! Originator: Will Douglas; patron:

  • First class period, 11-12
  • Lunch, 12-1
  • Fyt the second, 1-2:
    Authenticity's Delight
    Perform an original piece (yours or someone else's) in a period style, or perform a piece documentable to SCA period. Plan to briefly introduce the piece by saying what style it is in, and from when/where. Originator: Ysolt Pais du Cuer; patron:

    Dialogue of the Animals
    Medieval literature is full of examples of discussions taking place between animals. Have two animals debate or discuss different positions on a topic, in song, riddle, poem, story, subtlety or interpretive dance (or any other form you can think of). Have them come to some harmonious conclusion or agreement in the end on what they have discussed. Originator and patron: Master Owen Alun

    Given several texts to chose from in foreign languages, "translate" one of them and explain what it "really" means. Patron:

  • Second class period: 2:15-3:15
  • Fyt the third 3:15-4:15:
    Just Duet, Part Deux: Three is better than Two
    The Just Duet challenge from Bardic Madness XIV encouraged performers to pair up and show how two voices can be better than one. This year, Just Duet is expanding: put together a group of THREE people and perform a work in any format. For musical works, harmony is encouraged. Patron:

    Consonant Capers
    Draw a consonant from a hat, and write a poem or song of at least 8 lines using as few words as possible that do NOT begin with that consonant. Extra applause for rhyming, tongue-twisting, and for involving the day's theme of Nature/Animals. Originator: Charissa de la Sirra; patron:

    Ou sont les neiges d'antan? Or, And now for the weather
    People in SCA period, having no air conditioning or central heating, had to live more intimately with the weather than we are used to doing. Tell us of unusual, inconvenient, or astonishing weather, in period or in the SCA, true or fabricated, in poetry or in song (no stories for this one). Patron:

  • Court/Bardic College meeting/free time: 4:30-6 (timing still tentative)
  • Feast/Fyt the third, 6:15-9 (timing still tentative):

    Bard Scribe Illuminator
    Given a subject in the morning, compose, calligraph, and illuminate a text on that subject. This may be done individually or as a team. Patron:

    Royal Challenge: What the Animals Said about Northshield
    This was the theme of the Bard/Scribe/Illuminator Challenge from Bardic Madness I, but tonight we will use this theme as a regular challenge: in song, poetry, story, dance, music, drama, or any other format appropriate for Feast, tell us what an animal or animals said or are saying about Northshield. (Pending approval by TRMs) Patrons: Their Majesties of the Northshield, Siegfried and Bridei

    Blow Someone Else's Horn
    Perform the work of some other SCA person. Extra applause for memorizing, and for doing something that is not well-known. Originators: Ysolt Pais du Cuer and Dahrien Cordell. Patron:

  • Post-revel on site, going until whenever.

I look forward to seeing/hearing/experiencing the results of these challenges. The fabulous Lady Adda and her event staff in Shattered Oak are working hard to put on a great event, and I am looking forward to continuing to work with them. But most of all I look forward to spending the day/evening with all of you. Please put Bardic Madness on your calendar, do your pre-registration and start a list of friends to cram into your hotel room (to save money, I mean. What did you think I meant?).

Happy Twelfth Night. Go write something!

Provost, Bardic Madness XV

THL Eliane Halevy
Barony of Jararvellir, Kingdom of Northshield
Northshield Chatelaine
Provost, Bardic Madness XV
Jennifer Friedman