[Bards] Steppes Bardic Competition at Steppes Warlord, and The Matter of Ansteorra

Svan Coldbrowskaldsson ldsvan at gmail.com
Tue Apr 20 23:06:06 PDT 2010

Greetings Master Robin , To say these topics of bardic intriges me would be
a great understatement. I had not thought of competing but mayhap ive
changed my mind.           H.L. Svan Coldbrowskaldsson
On Mon, Apr 19, 2010 at 5:44 PM, Jay Rudin <rudin at peoplepc.com> wrote:

> Here is the format for the bardic competition at Steppes Warlord.  You will
> be competing to be the first bard for the incoming Baron and Baroness,
> Master Duncan Hepburn and Mistress Genevieve de Courtanvaux, the very day
> that they are invested, so it's a great time to come out and share tales of
> glory to the Steppes. Entrants will perform three pieces.  (After we see the
> number of entrants, we will decide if there will be an elimination round
> before the third piece.)
> 1. Any piece you choose.
> 2. A piece about The Matter of Britain, France, or Rome
> 3. A piece on the Matter of Ansteorra
> I will not adjudicate what pieces qualify as the Matter of Ansteorra.  If
> you say it qualifies, then it does, but it might be nice if you told us why.
> The idea of the Matter of Ansteorra intrigues me.
> I had always thought that the matter of Britain was the Arthurian mythos,
> and the matter of France was the Charlemagne stories.  But evidently the
> matter of Britain includes all the legends of Britain, thus including Celtic
> mythology, and the matter of France also includes some other French legends.
> I also suddenly discover that classical mythology and Roman military
> histories comprise the Matter of Rome, which I hadn't heard of before.  The
> three matters were originally identified by Jean Bodel in the 12th century,
> who wrote, "There are but three literary cycles that no man should be
> without -- the matters of Britain, of France, and of great Rome."
> I particularly like the fact that the content of the three period Matters
> is not clear.  That gives us scope for allowing great leeway in
> understanding the Matter of Ansteorra.  I would certainly include any pieces
> about Ansteorran legends (Inman, Lloyd, Willow, Tivar, Jan, etc.), any
> Ansteorran history (Gulf War, start of the kingdom, the great tax revolt,
> etc.), any piece that has become close to the Ansteorran hearts (Rising of
> the Star, Born on the Listfield, Karelia's song, Stand Brother Stand), and
> any period piece whose performance in Ansteorra mattered to people (Sir
> Orfeo, the work of the Baron's Men, etc.)
> I think we should not try to define the limits.  A piece is part of the
> Matter of Ansteorra if the bards performing it think it is.  This isn't a
> category to argue over, but a noble idea to think about, to aspire to, and
> to be inspired by.
> Come out to the Steppes Warlord and have fun with it!
> Robin of Gilwell / Jay Rudin
> Bard of the Steppes
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