[Bards] Discussion question
Emily.Minier at DTAG.Com
Emily.Minier at DTAG.Com
Fri Jul 30 04:11:41 PDT 2004
My method of becoming a better bard began with an attempt to increase my
repertoire (sic). I was tired of singing and hearing the same songs at
every event we went to. So, I began seeking out pieces from bards in other
regions of our great Kingdom as well as a few from bards in other Kingdoms.
I sought permission to perform those pieces, then set about learning them.
>From there, I found a bit of inspiration and (on the occasion that the muses
smile down on me), I can write my own. Another source of inspiration for my
own pieces is listening to the stories people tell (outside of the bardic
circle). Many people are passionate about their pursuits in the SCA and
when they are around their friends and families, they will sometime ramble
on and on about something they've seen or done that touched them in some
way. Usually (for me at least), those stories have at least one line that
will stick with me and BEG to have a piece written about them. I have a
notebook that I keep those single lines in and when the hankering to write
hits me and I can't decide what to write about, I pull out that book and
flip through it looking for inspiration. (Some examples of lines in the
book are: Real Men Don't Wear Lace and Do Fighters Dream of More than War)
Now, I am not condoning the act of eavesdropping on private
conversations...I'm merely talking about taking in your surroundings and
listening to the people who share this dream with us.
As far as performances...Some of the things I've learned to be a better
performing bard...If you start a piece and it's not reaching the audience,
don't be afraid to stop the song and start a different one. NEVER apologize
for your performance (i.e. I know I don't sing this song as well as
So-and-So, the Titled Bard of Everywhere, but here's my rendition).
Instead, introduce the piece (especially if it's not one of your own), list
the author if you know who it is (and if you don't - find out). People have
favorites that they'll want to hear from you every time you walk through (or
near) their camp - THIS IS A COMPLIMENT, treat it as such. If you've just
walked up on a circle, and someone says "Sing Something", and you haven't
had a chance to read the circle to know what the mood is, pull a couple of
old stand-bys (songs you know forwards, backwards, and upside down), put the
songs into categories (goofy, happy, war marches, love songs, etc) and ask
the group to pick a category...don't list the songs as many will not know
Before I wrap up, one last thing. If possible, find another bard you
trust...when you've got a new piece to perform ask them to listen to it and
ask them to give honest, constructive criticism...be willing to accept the
critique and learn from it (remember, you don't have to agree with them or
incorporate all of their suggestions into the piece)...Polish the piece if
necessary and then ask them to listen again. I've never met a bard who
isn't willing to listen to another bard and offer "pointers". I may be a
bit naïve here too, but I've never met a malicious bard who will give
negative pointers to worsen the piece.
Here's where I break one of my own rules...I know I'm not the greatest bard
in the Kingdom... I know that I still have a lot to learn and lot to write
(sometimes I wish the songs would come out as a solid unit though)...But I'm
willing to gather whatever knowledge I can from whichever bard is willing to
share (that seems to be most of them I've found) and run with it...I've come
a long way (from knowing two songs not worth singing in my own encampment to
being one of the Titled Bards of Namron), but I know the journey is just
Hope this helps.
In Service to the Dream,
Lady Adalia "Nyx" VonDerBerg
From: bards-bounces+emily.minier=dtag.com at ansteorra.org
[mailto:bards-bounces+emily.minier=dtag.com at ansteorra.org] On Behalf Of Dawn
Sent: Thursday, July 29, 2004 4:14 PM
Subject: [Bards] Discussion question
Question: How do you, personally, work to become a better bard?
It's the little things in life...
Do you Yahoo!?
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