minstrel: Mid-Realm Bardic Madness Challenges

Cerian Cantwr cerian at minstrel.com
Wed Sep 28 09:48:58 PDT 2011

Mid-Realm Bardic Madness XIII - The Beast One Yet

Greetings and welcome are bid to all Bards, Troubadors, Trouveres,
Minstrels, Minnesingers, Jongleurs, Singers, Storytellers, Poets,
Scops, Skalds, Fillids, Olaves, Griots, Wordsmiths, and Friends of
these arts. Also Musicians, Dancers, Jugglers, Magicians, and Players
as well.

This year's Bardic Madness will take place on November 19th, 2011. Our
hosts will be the Marche of Alderford (Canton, OH).  Many thanks go to
all of them for their hospitality in helping the bardic community out
this year.

The purpose of today's challenges is to encourage the participants'
creativity and artistic growth.  They are not meant to be
competitions - everyone who takes part can consider themselves a

Your response to the various challenges may be in many different
forms. Song or story are the most obvious choices; however juggling,
magic, instrumental, or dance can also express an idea or tell a
tale.  All of these could be used to answer a given challenge (though
perhaps not all at the same time :-) .  Our desire here is to be
inclusive rather than exclusive.  If you have something to share that
doesn't quite fit or that stretches the definitions a little, then
fire away.

It is our wish to create a "bardic safe zone" - a friendly place
where you may feel free to experiment and try new things.  If you've
never performed before, now's your chance.  You'll be hard pressed to
find a friendlier and more supportive audience.  We would be
delighted to see lots of first time performers.

Please remember, in order to make sure as many gentles get a chance
to perform as possible, we ask that you limit your performances
(including introductions) so that they run less than five minutes.

For more event information, see the website at
http://tilted-windmill.com/bms13  Additional information will be
posted there as it becomes available.

For questions about the days challenges, classes, patrons, or
participating in the concert please contact the provosts:
    Cerian Cantwr                 Llywelyn Glyndwr
    cerian at minstrel.com           cipram at sbcglobal.net

For questions about the site and logistics, please contact the
    Ursula the Widow
    (Michelle Hartz)
    458 North Broadway
    New Philadelphia, OH, 44663
    ursula at 4th.com

The Challenges

Fyt the First:

Pass the Tale:
All those who wish to participate get up together, and tell a tale
from beginning to end.  The challenge's patron will 'conduct' by
pointing to the person whose turn it is to continue the tale, and
deciding when it is time to end.

Mistaken Identity:
Bestiaries often confused similar critters. For instance identifying
the unicorn and the rhinoceros as the same animal because they share
the same single horn; or giving the tiger spots instead of stripes.
Tell us about a case of mistaken identity.

Beast from the East:
The Tyger and the Dragon have an annual "rivalry". Imagine how this
rivalry MIGHT have started, or how it could be resolved (or not ...)

2nd fyt:

Given several texts to choose from in foreign languages, "translate"
one of them and explain what it "really" means.

Triolets Are Blue:
The triolet is a period French verse form dating back to the thirteenth
century. It consists of an eight line stanza with two repeated lines
(the rhyme scheme is shown below), and can be used singly or as part of
a cycle.  Try your hand at writing one. Additional examples may be
found on-line at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triolet

a - line 1
b - line 2
a - rhymes with line 1
A - identical to line 1
a - rhymes with line 1
b - rhymes with line 2
A - identical to line 1
B - identical to line 2

For example:	
For long the cruel wish I knew
That your free heart should ache for me
While mine should bear no ache for you;
For, long-the cruel wish!-I knew
How men can feel, and craved to view
My triumph-fated not to be
For long! . . . The cruel wish I knew
That your free heart should ache for me!

Thomas Hardy

A Monster in Any Medium:
Create for us a creature. Use whatever tools and materials you wish -
C&I, fiber arts, clay, a subtlety, drinking straws. Let your
imagination run wild with this one. Once you have built your beastie,
bring it in and tell us about it.  Both creature and piece may be
created before the event.

3rd fyt:

A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words:
Members of the populace will draw pictures for this challenge based on
the theme: bestiary creatures (feel free to define this broadly - in
period it could be real creatures, mythical ones, and sometimes rocks).
Participants will pull both a drawing and a song out of a hat just
before the challenge starts. Write two verses and a chorus about the
picture using the tune.

The Beast's Lair:
Beasts arise in all sorts of locations - jungles, desserts, steppes,
many of which were just as unfamiliar to the folk of Europe as the
animals themselves. Take us to one of these exotic, imaginary or fabled

Period Piece:
Perform a documentably period piece of music, story, or song (poetry,
prose, and so forth are good too). Dig out those reference books, blow
off the dust (try not to sneeze), and see what wonderful and magical
treasures you can find in them. There is a staggering amount of
fantastic material out there. Find something, be it silly or sublime,
and amaze us with it.

4th fyt:

Feast time is traditionally when we raise our glasses on high to honor
the crown and other deserving individuals. Given a topic or person at
random, create an appropriate toast for them.

Show your Breeding:
We all know where unicorns, mermaids, cyclopeans, and the like
originated - or do we? Pick a fabulous creature and tell us where it
MIGHT have come from.

Things That Go Bump in the Night:
The darkness can be filled with all sorts of fantastical things. Why do
they go *bump* anyway? Are they menacing? Are they percussionists?
Maybe they're just near-sighted. You tell us.

Challenge General Rules

Challenges are not contests. You win by entering and striving to do
the best you can.

Challenges are designed to encourage you to try your hand at
something new, to stretch yourself, to enjoy, and to celebrate the
creative spirit.

Read the guidelines for the challenges carefully, like most
exercises, they are designed to help you develop in specific areas.
Try to follow them as closely as you can, but stretching them in
unexpected directions is good too.

Individuals are welcome and encouraged to give recognition to those
performers whom they especially enjoy.

In order to allow the largest number of people to participate,
challenge entries shall be limited to five minutes or less (that
includes the introduction). Each person may enter a maximum of one
piece in each challenge and a maximum of four challenges.

More information about the minstrel mailing list