[Darkwood-SCA] Winner of the Bard of the Oaks competition

John Rossignol giguette at pacbell.net
Sun Sep 25 17:15:17 PDT 2005

Yesterday evening, at its A&S Tourney, the Barony of Darkwood held its 
annual audition for a new Bard of the Oaks.  The winner of the audition 
was Cassandra Rossignol.

The two contestants were Cassandra Rossignol, and former Bard of the 
Mists Branwen Cryccthegn Deorcwuda.  Auditing was Kellyn Firesinger, 
former Bard of Cynagua, who could not formally audition because, sadly, 
she is leaving us for the rainy, sodden...er...lush, green coast of An 
Tir.  The distinguished judges were Their Excellencies Baron Erich and 
Baroness Liesl of Darkwood, Her Majesty of the West Queen Eliana, and 
Master Juan Santiago, Bard of the Mists.  Although I, as Bard of the 
Oaks, would normally have been one of the judges, I of course disbarred 
myself since I also happen to be the ... shall we say ... not altogether 
unbiased father of one of the contestants.

The format of the competition was as follows:
1) A Period piece, or a piece in a Period style.
2) A "masterwork" to display the contestant's skills to best advantage.
3) An "announced on the morning of the competition" entry, which this 
year was a piece on "the turning of the seasons".

All three participants turned in wonderful performances, despite the 
fact that they had only entered the competition at the last moment. 
 Kellyn's "turning of the seasons" piece was a lovely and loving 
farewell to this realm and her many friends here;  Branwen's stunning 
piece -- and indeed her entire audition -- were especially amazing since 
she had arrived on site and decided to compete less than two hours 
before the competition began; Cassandra...  Well, what to you expect me 
to say?  I'm her father!  Suffice it to say that Cassandra was 
victorious.  I will say that I happen to know that for her Period piece, 
"Je les ai tant quises" by Vitam, in addition to the medieval French 
words she also sang an English translation which she had found and 
skillfully fitted into a melody for which it did not scan at all -- a 
difficult task.

Thank you Your Majesty, and Master Juan, for your help in judging our 
bardic competition.

Congratulations to Cassandra, and thank you all three for giving us a 
lovely and moving evening.  The bardic spirit burns brightly in you, and 
it warmed our hearts.

Cassandra will step up as Bard of the Oaks on October 22, at the 
Baroness' Masked Ball.

In Service,
John Rossignol, Bard of the Oaks

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