[Bards] no suger coating on this

Jay Rudin rudin at ev1.net
Tue Oct 31 11:06:34 PST 2006

Ivo wrote:

> Okay, time to make everyone mad at me.
> Sorry , but this is how I see it, and I say what I am about to say with 
> all the respect due to the audience present.
> Guys, Hollywood makes movies for millions of dollars, they run for upwards 
> of two to three hours a pop, and during the summer, most theaters can't 
> sell $12.00 tickets fast enough.
> We do 3 - 10 minute performances for FREE, and do them to an audience that 
> is much, much more homogeneous than the one Hollywood markets to. And yet, 
> we still have trouble getting people to sit through the first round of 
> most bardic competitions, IF we can get them to show up at all.
> You know, If I presented this scenario to a theater operator, a director, 
> or a performing arts teachers, I am highly suspicious the answer would be 
> a pointed and painful rendition of "Wow, you guys must be pretty bad."
> You know what? I think we have a bad reputation.
> We are an entertainment industry. Weather we deal in dollar figures or 
> championships or just prestigue, we are subject to supply and demand just 
> like Hollywood.
> If a Movie directer couldn't fill a theater once every three weeks with a 
> $.50 ticket sale, we would all say he sucked.
> Right now, we--the bards of Ansteorra--cant seem to fill some 
> competitions, and they are free attendance. So what dose that say about 
> us?
> Okay, break here---
> I'm sorry guys, I honestly don't want to hurt people's feelings, and I 
> don't want to make enemies, but I just feel that the truth is looking us 
> in the face--or part of the truth anyway--and a lot of people aren't 
> addressing it.
> Yes, I play in the north, so my opinion is reflective of my location.
> Yes, those who know me know I am passionate and rarely soft spoke,
> And yes, I LOVE Ansteora and I love Bardic,
> I'm just more than a little frustrated as watching what I see as a decline 
> in both out prestige and out influence.
> More to follow momentarily......watch the list.
> Ivo Blackhawk

Bards need to understand metaphors and analogies well enough to use them, 
and well enough to see when they apply and when they don't.  This one 
doesn't apply.

1.  OF COURSE we're not as good as professionals who spend their entire 
lives perfecting the craft.  We're amateurs.  I've spent less time learning 
performaance, poetry, story construction, fencing, chivalric combat, 
heraldry, persona, Elizabethan culture and other SCA skills combined than 
the worst failed actor spent just learning to peform.

2. You can't compare my audience with a movie theater's unless we announce, 
days in advance, exactly what piece we're doing and when, with huge 
advertising budgets to convince people to come.  The proper comparison is to 
a movie theater that will run some movie, any movie, with no advertisement 
except a guy out front yelling, and you can walk in and watch or not. 
Nobody has such theaters because nobody would attend.

3. They *can't* fill theaters during the day when people are busy.  Only 
evenings.  That's what we do.  We can get people to watch us late at night 
when they are ready for entertainment, but not during the day at an event if 
they came to to see old friends, buy & sell things, talk to officers and 
nobility, etc.  The problem is that people come to Twelfth Night with stuff 
to do.

I don't think anybody has been more devoted to Kingdom Eisteddfod over the 
last twenty four years than I have, and I feel extremely conflicted that 
day -- because Eisteddfod is full time, and Twelfth Night is full time.  The 
people with less focus on Eisteddfod than I will not be able to attend it.

Lots of people watched Eisteddfod when we had an active college and 
Eisteddfod was its own event.

Robin of Gilwell / Jay Rudin 

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