Sunday, April 7, 2013

Queen Kiena's Martial Spectacular

Mine is an odd specialty. I am an expert on medieval spectacle and its recreation. It is a performance studies discipline that, naturally, I entered via the SCA. In my book, *Medieval Fantasy as Performance*, the best chapter is be third, where I discuss how the SCA recreates many forms of Medieval theatre, including ceremony. I spend a lot of time on coronations (mostly Sir Guillaume's in CAID and Thorsen and Svava's in the East). I note that in both of these coronations, the incoming royalty used theatricality to create a performance wherein they were the lead actors in a drama which, by moving through, they enacted their assumption of royal authority. Others do a good job at this from time to time. today was Gregor Kiena's coronation, and her majesty had a vision of what she wanted the festival to look like. It was essentially a Renaissance martial festival. It had an archery tournament, a rapier tournament, equestrian games and a heavy tournament going on simultaneously throughout the site. Then, in the horse arena, they had two combats at the barrier, one for rapier and one for heavies. Then a set of melees for both groups. Then the King's and Queen's champions fought. All of this built up to a big finale. Her majesty being an avid jouster had invited several SCA and IJA jousters to giveaway demonstration. There were seven jouster making passes with light lance, and all of hem were excellent. They included Charlie Andrews, one of the IJA founders and seven time champion. I loved it. The horses were awesome (Sir Ankara has a Percheron that Tandy 19.1 hands and looks like an over sized Roman equestrian statue). The day was fun. Mostly, I got to fight a lot.

I have been using Indian Clubs exclusively, and have seen some improvement in my left elbow lately.

Workouts since Mudthaw have been light. I have gone on a few bike rides. Most days I do 50 pushups. I have been to Yoga class. Wednesday I did one of the tougher WODs, Grace, which consists of 30 clean and jerks for time (mi was a dismal 12 minutes at 95 lbs). Still aching from that three days later.

The tourney format was a Birka style bear pit, with one point for each fight and one point for each win. I started out with a loss to Evaldr but I came back to beat Conrad and then run through four other guys. My next time in I beat Evaldr and Jan Janovitch and went on another nice run. In the middle of my third run we broke to do the melees. When we came back my runs got shorter but I was still winning. When the jousting started I quit to go watch. In all I killed Conrad three times, Evaldr twice, Jan twice, and some other good fighters. I was sticking my hook thrust. My defense was tight. Conrad said I looked better than he had ver seen me look, that I was crisp, fast, hit hard and was patient. Good stuff.

In the melees I had fun. I was chosen as one of the five for the King's side at the barrier. I killed some guys. Balin was running it and changed up the rules, at one point saying we could only fight brought he barrier. I dropped to my knees and stabbed three people.

The team melee I still had a life at the end and I killed some good fighters. In the Grand melee, Conrad, Cullyn, Brenan and Evaldr formed an alliance and the first thing they did was come after me. So that hurt.

Was a tight defense, hook thrusts, and short fast snaps. I got several hook thrusts in and worked both my regular defender and an A frame. Both worked. I had a great time, but I found that, as I got more tired, I squared up more and that cost me a few fights. Against Conrad I had to Struve for height, and my defense was still good.

It is 21 days until Crown. My next time in armor will be hopefully Wednesday.

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