[Bards] Back to docs

Dawn Rummel dsrummel at yahoo.com
Mon Jan 12 20:27:52 PST 2004

"Biggs, Truly" <truly.biggs at hp.com> wrote:
Oops – Sorry to have continued on a topic that is dead.


Antonia says: Really, I didn't mean to call it dead.  I just wanted to jump in the lull with a topic I've been mulling over for awhile.  So why don't I just kick it again (this is long - sorry).


Eleanor wrote:

Authenticity is a quantifiable thing - and therefore easier to judge than art. I think if we have leaned toward authenticity in the SCA, it has something to do with attempting to standardize what we all think is "GOOD" by measuring
it against something stationary - like - is it historically accurate. 
We have opted for artifact rather than art.


Antonia responds: I'm not sure I buy this entirely.  It may be why *some* people do it - but not why *I* like documetation.  I do very little research into other period things, but I find joy in learning about period literature.  Documentation allows me to hone that knowledge - you know a thing better if you can explain it, even better still if you can put that knowledge into writing.  I don't think requiring research necessarily takes away from performance - or, perhaps more precisely, I don't think judges should allow it to.  There is also the question of the purpose of the particular competition - is it to educate and to show that you are educated about performance?  Is it to be as entertaining as possible in a period fashion?  Or is it to *be* entertaining?  The judging will certainly vary in each situation.


Eleanor writes:

If I may attempt to extrapolate - If we choose a titled bard through
competition, and we score somewhat entertaining period pieces higher
than more often requested/crowd pleasing original/more modern pieces,
then we have set ourselves up to have, say, a baronial bard who is
perhaps not a good leader for the campfire sings. 


Antonia responds:  Yes, but also a bard who is more focused on research and recreation.  I actually think this is not entirely a bad thing.  Each barony has a particular flavor - some are more into period foo and some are more into rowdy, bawdy campfire circles, with everything in between.  So, since each gets to make up the rules for their competitions, each should end up with the type bard they would want.  Or, if the outgoing champion makes up the rules, hopefully he or she will consult the ruling nobles on what they want and adjust accordingly.  The problem then comes to kingdom level competitions, of which we have 2 - Eisteddfodd and Kingdom A&S (very different types of competitions).  Kingdom A&S will *of course* be heavy on the documentation side of things.  Leaving Eisteddfodd - and we're back where started.


Pendaran and Eleanor wrote: something neat comparing bad period pieces to bad period food


I'm with Eleanor on this one, though my percentage might be different.  I think a higher percentage of non-period pieces are going to be more entertaining to the general public than period pieces (I think that says what I want it to).  For my part, I like the idea of wooing them with funny or sad or wonderful not-necessarily-period pieces, then sprinkle in some fabulous period pieces (they certainly exist, you just might have to dig a little).  Maybe then they'll want more!


Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a sucker for good performance, be it period or non-period.  In the end, I'd be sad to see either side win, and I hope we never lose sight of the fact that a bard's primary jobs are entertainment and education.  But how can we educate if no one is listening, and who will listen if we're not entertaining?  


It's the little things in life...

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