minstrel: Things bardic at Triatia war, and saying hello (fwd)

Kathy Lee kal35810 at Jetson.UH.EDU
Fri Mar 28 08:43:02 PST 1997


>The problem is that 
>Triatia War is not having any war point for the bards.

Here's a question for thought ... SHOULD the wars have a warpoint for
bardic?  I'm probably opening up a can of worms here, but it's been a topic
of concern in Ansteorra for a while.  Read on if you want my two cents worth ...

I'll base my opinions on Gulf Wars and Pennsic, since those are the major
wars I've been able to attend.  What has been done (to my knowledge) at
these events is akin to a "champions tourney", with no allies participating.

For example, at the most recent Gulf Wars, the bards (and dancers - same
competition) representing Ansteorra were handpicked, and then sent to
compete against Trimaris.  (Ansteorra was supposed to have a competition
within itself to determine the "champions", but this didn't happen due to
time constraints.)  The skirmish (not an entire war point) was a one shot,
do your best style.  I'm not sure who the judges were -- Meridians, perhaps,
or an interkingdom mix?

At Pennsic, it seems to be pretty much the same type of competition.  The
East and the Middle select their champions (I'm not sure how this is done --
anyone?), and there is a competition to determine the winning kingdom.

My question is, should we have these competitions at all?  I'm not sure.

If we incorporate bardic competitions as war points, what about dancing?
heraldry?  beadmaking?  waterbearing?  brewing?  calligraphy?  I could go on
and on.  As for equestrian activities, archery and rapier combat - those ARE
war-time activities.  Is bardcraft?

I'm not saying that bards don't have a place at these events -- quite the
contrary.  At Gulf Wars, I could be found almost daily on the field, singing
the Ansteorran troops into battle.  There's no feeling in the world such as
singing a war song at the top of your lungs to a field of 150+ fighters, and
then to hear them start pounding on their shields in time to the music.
(Get authorized, and you can go onto the field with your troops.  It really
annoys the enemy to have a bard behind the opposite shield wall.  And trust
me, your side will fight tooth and nail to keep you alive!)  If you don't
fight, you can inspire, marshall, waterbear, herald, etc.  Or offer to teach
a class. Or entertain the folks on the sidelines during those ever-present
"HOLD"s.  After the fighting, at night, you ARE the reason many people come
to events.  They want to be entertained.  Travel from campsite to campsite,
find a corner in a tavern, join a bardic circle - whatever suits your style.
We did bardic security shifts, riding throught the camp on patrol, singing
in the golfcarts!

Now I'm going to contradict myself.  I'm not sure that Bardcraft should be a
warpoint.  But, when called upon to compete, I have answered that call.  So
much for the rantings of a hypocrite. :-)

So, now that I've opened the proverbial can of worms, anyone else have an
opinion?

-Katerina Aretino ("Kat")
 Ansteorra


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