Black Gryphon Inn XX is right around the corner and in an attempt to inspire people to try their hands at the bardic arts, I am very excited to share this interview our current King’s Bard, Mästarinna Margreþa la Fauvelle. She is not only a magnetic performer and a skilled musician, but she took me as her apprentice this year at Mudthaw. She has a huge wealth of knowledge of Medieval music and is infectious to be around with her energy and enthusiasm. If you have ever seen her perform or spoken with her then you can certainly see why she is our current King’s Bard. If you want to see and hear more of her work and you can’t make it to Black Gryphon Inn, then be sure to check out A Day of the Decameron. She will be organizing all of the music for the event and, if you’re looking for something completely immersive, then this the one to see!
1. What is your favorite word? Why?
This and the next answer is just impossible to answer. Not because I’d have to pick a language to begin with, but because with the right context, every word can be either a favorite or the opposite.
2. What is your least favorite word? Why?
3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?
Taking an idea (mine or not) and augment it in orders of magnitude. Collaboration where things fall where they should.
4. What turns you off?
Not being open to the suggestions or ideas of others.
5. What is your favorite curse word (bonus points if it is a period appropriate slur)?
Maledicantur omnia! (I don’t know if the whole phrase was uttered in period, but it’s Latin for “curse it all!”, and “maledicantur X” was used in period.
6. What bardic-related sound or noise do you love?
The sound of broken consort. Krummhorn ensemble is a close second.
7. What bardic-related sound or noise do you hate?
The sound of unpreparedness.
8. What area of bardic performance (other than those that you already working in) would you like to attempt?
I believe I’d like to do commedia some time.
9. What area of bardic performance (other than those that you already working in) would you not like to attempt?
I am not a very willing storyteller.
10. Your name is called to appear in court. What would you hope to hear Their Majesties say? That I took on a job and did it well. That my art speaks to others.
What are you currently working on?
I am coordinating some of the music for the upcoming Coronation of TRHs, and I am the music coordinator for the “A Day Of The Decameron” event that is happening in April in Ostgardr. I always look to expand my repertory, and up my “chops” in those instruments that I have only gotten recently, or that I haven’t played for some time.
How long have you been playing in the SCA? How long have you been a bard? Have you won any competitions or championships? Is there any other interesting information you would like to add?
My first event was the Barony-Marche of the Debatable Lands (Pittsburgh, PA) 12thnight event, I believe in AS 39, so 14-15 years ago. I entered their baronial bardic competition right there and then. That makes me an insta-bard I guess!
I am currently His Majesty’s Bard, and in the past I was the Debatable Lands Bardic Champion (some years after that first event, though!) I have also entered with a choral group while living in the Midrealm for their A&S competition; the ensemble took first place.
I was a semi-professional, classically trained musician before I was a SCAdian, but the SCA was the added push that got me deep into Early Music research. Now I am a hopeless instrument collector!
In general, I do not call myself a “Bard”, not because it is a SCA-loaded term, but because in my period of interest the terms “jonglaressa”, “joculatrix” or “menestrelle” are more appropriate. “Wayte” is okay as well.