How can Lady Juliane and I say thanks to all those who made the Bardic
Roundhouse a success? We could write a book. Since most of you won't
sit still for a book, I'd like to lead with four people without whom
the event wouldn't have come off at all:
Thomasina Greenwell and
Eva Sturmaere spent 48+ hours tending to the care and feeding of 70
bards and friends. The food moved swiftly and smoothly and all were
satisfied, I think. Then they stayed around to tear down.
Bernard Sturmaere spent hours over a hot grill making sure the barbecue
feast arrived tasty and hot. He spent much of the rest of the time on
duties we never asked him to do: guiding parking and making sure the
facilities were up to snuff. He even guided one inebriated bardic
circler safely back to his tent. Then he stayed around to tear down.
mention these three in particular because although they've always shown
an interest in bardic activities, this wasn't really "their" event at
In the top four, we have
to tell the tale of Abel the Troll (Abel Frolicher), who spent his time gatekeeping in
spite of the insistance of the autocrats that he abandon his post and
have fun. Actually, we encourage you to hear him tell the tale
himself, as he did at the circle Friday night; he had the crowd in
tears of laughter.
May we say with modesty that this event was successful?
We'd budgeted for 25; the attendance was 70 (wish we could say this
means we made piles of money, but the budget was based on the food; we
broke even, though). When we strolled over to the bardic circle on
Saturday night, it was stunning. The only larger circles I have seen
have been at Pennsic. We'd planned a fair amount of "down time" during
the day, and we were pleased to see that time was filled with song and
music and storytelling. Our intended audience was the bards of
northern Oaken, but we also had many participants from Illinois,
Indiana, New York, and Massachusetts.
the Widow carefully assembled a class schedule which was rightly
praised for its diversity, with tracks for both inexperienced and
experienced bards, and covering culture, music, and writing. She also
neatly juggled a pair of instructors' travel snafus, although we have
to admit we were very lucky to have Master John Inchingham on hand to
improvise a class on Improvisation.
It can't be a coincidence
that as we stuck our heads into each class session, we heard something
pithy, or hilarious, or intriguing. Our (scheduled) instructors were:
Mathilda Harper, Robin McCauley, Kateryn Draper, Brendan O Corraighe,
Lyonnete Vibert, Lady Ursula herself, and of course Tyzes
prepared a set of other activities which kept the crowd on its toes all
day. (Llywelyn notes: Szof came up with the idea for a scavenger
hunt, but Lady Juliane really gets credit for putting it together.)
Wulfgar, our mentor, was there for us, whenever we needed him. Thanks, Wulfie!
and Brendan got a lot of praise - from our most experienced
participants - for the way they ran circles on Friday and Saturday
nights. One went so far to say Friday's was the best circle she'd ever
participated in; she said it twice so she be sure we noticed.
was also the weblackey; and the site not only looked great, he was
thoughtful in his comments and improvements on the content and always
Juliane Bechaumpe and Llywelyn Glyndwr
"Academic politics is the most vicious and bitter form of politics, because the stakes are so low." Wallace Sayre