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Contests

The Poet Laureate of Trimaris Competition
Saturday at 1:00 PM in the Bardic Pavilion
(See the Official Rules below)

The Masque Laureate of Trimaris Competition
Saturday at 2:00 PM in the Bardic Pavilion
(See the Official Rules below)

The Rules for the Laureate Competitions of Trimaris

General Eligibility
  1. Anyone entering a competition must be a permanent resident of Trimaris and have lived within the boundaries of Trimaris for no less than six (6) months. 
  2. A minimum of three (3) entries are required in order for any Laureate Competition to be held.
  3. As the Laureates are Performance Based competitions, No submitted documentation will be used as a judging consideration for any Laureate Competition. The Jongleur Laureate Competition is the only Laureate which requires Documentation, and this is solely to determine the eligibility of the performance as it is Period Based.
 
Poet Laureate
 
Traditionally, Poet Laureate is held twice a year at Crown Tournament, with the following entry criteria:
  • Poet Laureate entries are to be original poetry performed solo by the author.
  • The subject matter required is either an SCA or Period Theme.
  • Pieces that have previously won in this category of the Laureate Competition are NOT eligible.
  • Although not a requirement to enter Poet Laureate Competitions, research is always encouraged in the interest of furthering the entrant’s knowledge of the performance based arts.
  • The composition and performance of documentable period forms and styles are not only allowed but also encouraged they are just not a requirement.
  • The winner will be given the Regalia for the title and should wear it at all official SCA events during their tenure as the champion
  • The winner will be asked to perform at any time during their tenure as the champion
  • The winner can join the Crown’s champions any time they are asked to serve the Crown and stand with them
  • The winner is expected to run the next Troubadour Laureate competition with the assistance of the Deputy of the Laureates
 
Masque Laureate
 
The Masque Laureate rules are a bit more extensive as there are more entry eligibilities than the other Laureate Competitions.  The subject matter required is either an SCA or Period Theme.
 
Types of entries allowed in the Masque Laureate which include Solo and Ensemble Performances of the following forms:
  • Musical Vocal and Instrumental, are to be an original piece of work. Period style writing, words, language, music or any musical instruments used are not a requirement of entry, but are always encouraged if it all possible.
  • Dancing original choreography is encouraged as is original/period style music, but shall not be a requirement for entry. It shall have a “look or style” representative of a period “form” of dance.
  • Any form of Street Performance, not already listed or covered under previous Laureate rules, is allowed to enter the Masque Laureate Competitions, as solo or group examples being: juggling, sword swallowing, dog and pony show, puppets, etc.
  • Any spoken Performance (except as described under the Poet Laureate Rules)
  • The winner will be given the Regalia for the title and should wear it at all official SCA events during their tenure as the champion
  • The winner will be asked to perform at any time during their tenure as the champion
  • The winner can join the Crown’s champions any time they are asked to serve the Crown and stand with them
  • The winner is expected to run the next Troubadour Laureate competition with the assistance of the Deputy of the Laureates
  • ***Solo Vocal performances of original poetry/songs are allowed as long as they are NOT performed by the composer. Solo performances of collaborations are allowed as long as all known contributors are credited. Also allowable is an entry by anyone other than the composer of a performance piece which has won Poet or Troubadour Laureate Competitions.***
  • Parodies and Filking of existing pieces IS PERMITTED for the Masque Laureate Competition. However, modifications to the content are to be more than minor.
Exclusions are those types of entries which are NOT eligible for Masque Laureate because they are eligible for other Laureate Competitions:
  • Original Poetry/Prose performed solo by author is not allowed in a Masque Laureate Competition, as there is already a competition called Poet Laureate for performances of this nature.
  • Original song/words presented in solo form by author is not allowed in a Masque Laureate Competition, as there is already a competition called Troubadour Laureate for performances of this nature.
 Additional Rules:
  • Unlike the Poet and Troubadour Laureate Competitions, pieces that have previously won in ANY category of the Laureate Competitions ARE eligible as long as not performed by the previous winner(s)
  • Although not a requirement to enter Masque Laureate Competitions, research is always encouraged in the interest of furthering the entrant’s knowledge of the performance based arts.
  • The composition and performance of documentable period forms and styles are not only allowed but also encouraged they are just not a requirement
  •  IF an ensemble (duet and upward in count) wins the Masque Laureate Competition the ensemble may share wearing the Laureate Bells/Medallion at their discretion. But unless an individual has been designated as representative of the ensemble (duet and upward in count) a single scroll shall be presented to the group as a whole for the Masque Laureate Competition. As it was the Ensemble as a whole which won NOT individual members.
 
 
General Rules for all Laureates
  • PLEASE NOTE: If a performer has won any competition other than an Official Laureate Competition with their piece it is still allowable to enter their piece in a Laureate Competition (as long as they abide by the rules of THAT competition).
  • If a person holds the title for any Laureate, they may enter (and win) any or all other Laureate Competitions held. An individual could conceivably hold ALL of the Laureate titles at one time. No holder of any one of the Laureate Titles may succeed themselves. (Enter a consecutive competition of which they already hold that title)
  • The winner(s) of any Laureate competition, at the discretion of the Crown, would receive the Order of the Bards Laureate (OBL) when acknowledged as Troubadour/Poet/Masque/Jongleur Laureate in Court.
 
There will be a minimum of three (3) entries in order for a Laureate Competition to take place. If there are not enough entries for a Laureate Competition to take place, the holder of the title for that competition will be given the option of retaining that title and regalia until the next Kingdom event that this competition may be held. If the holder declines the regalia will be turned over to the Minister of the Laureate until the next Kingdom event this competition may be held.

Responsibilities for holders of Laureate Titles
 
  • It is the responsibility of each Laureate to Honor the title they have earned by offering their services as a performer at any event they may attend.
  • It is the responsibility of each Laureate to Honor the title they have earned by sharing their skills and knowledge with others who would strive to one day also share the Honor of the title of a Kingdom Laureate.
  • It is the responsibility of each Laureate to Honor the title they have earned by being present and ready to assist the Officer of the Laureate with the organizing and running of the Laureate Competition they hold the title for at the next Kingdom Event it would be traditionally held.
  • If for any reason the holder(s) of a Laureate Title is unable to continue in that position, which would in essence mean leaving Kingdom or quitting the SCA, at first opportunity PRIOR to moving or quitting, it is the responsibility of the individual(s) who received and in possession of the Regalia to notify the Minister of the Laureate (whose information is listed in the Talewinds) of this and turn over the Bells/Medallion (and all other Regalia) to the Art Sci Officer of their local group, requesting a receipt. As these are Kingdom Regalia of the oldest competitions in the Kingdom. If this does not happen, or the Bells/Medallion (and all other Regalia) is lost, the person(s) with that title will be held responsible for replacing this Regalia.
  • If for any reason the holder(s) is unable to be present for the same competition, it is the responsibility of the individual who received and is in possession of the Regalia to notify the Minister of the Laureate (whose information is listed in the Talewinds) of this and to turn it over to the Art Sci Officer of their local group the Bells/Medallion (and all other Regalia) at the first opportunity PRIOR to this competition that arrangements may be made for it to be transported to and be presented to the winning performance at that competition.
 
Laureate Judging Guidelines
 
Their Royal Majesties and Their Royal Highnesses are always be invited to participate as judges. Her Majesty is THE Royal Patron of the Arts in Trimaris.
 
Choosing Judges and Winners
  • The individual(s) holding the title for any competition will only judge as a tie breaker. These individual(s) may be present during the judging but not offer an opinion unless requested by at least two (2) of the judges. Their opinion shall not be considered a vote unless there is a tie.
  • If there are two or more persons with the same title (Masque or Jongleur Laureates)there is only one vote allowed as there is only one title. It is recommended in cases of more than one person “holding the bells” for the Masque or Jongleur title that one be chosen as their spokesperson or judge to assist and prevent any delays in judging decisions.
  • There are to be no less than two judges, it is however, highly recommended there be an attempt made to have at least three (3)or an odd number of judges present.
  • It is preferred the judges be in total agreement regarding the winner/finalists of any competition. If the judges are not in complete agreement the winner is to be chosen by a majority consensus of at the very least one (1).
  • It is “preferred” that the judges have knowledge/experience at least equal to that of the performers.
  • It is recommended that anyone judging have performance experience, preferably, in the SCA. The following is a good list to choose from: Previous Laureate Winners and competitors; those who have not participated in a Laureate competition, but have competed in non-kingdom level performance competitions; known/established non-competitive performers of the kingdom. Additionally those who “established” Patrons of the Performance Based Arts.
Audience Participation
  • It is recommended when choosing the winner that audience response for a performance be taken into consideration.
  • Judges are requested to pay some form of attention to the audience during and at the end of a performance.
  • For the sake of fairness, audience shall be asked to applaud only, when acknowledging a performance/performer for judging purposes. I.E. no screaming, yelling, whistling, pounding on things etc. This can be very disconcerting to those getting ready to perform.
Performance Judging Criteria
  • Although not a requirement to enter Poet Laureate, Troubadour Laureate, and Masque Laureate Competitions, research and documentation is always encouraged in the interest of furthering the entrant’s knowledge of the performance based arts. Period style musical instrumentation, accompaniment, choreography, writing, performance, et al, shall not be a requirement for Poet, Troubadour, Masque (but is encouraged).
  • There will be no tolerance for judging based on personal bias in any direction toward any individual or ensemble. If any person feels they are unable to judge without personal bias it is strongly recommended they honorably excuse themselves from judging. Or abstain from opining when asked about an individual or group this may unjustly effect. If there is any question about this please notify the Minister of the Laureate BEFORE a final decision is made.
  • Judging for ALL Laureate Competitions shall be based on performance.
  • For those who have more experience in the research and judging of technical aspects of performance, documented/documentable styles of writing, instruments/instrumentation, performance, and costuming etc., as documentation is not a requirement for Poet, Troubadour and Masque and only to determine eligibility for the Jongleur of the competitions, the presence of same is to have no effect on any of the judging as it is performance based only.
  • In the case of Poet and Troubadour, judging is based on original words, tunes, AND performance by the author. The subject matter is to be at the very least SCA or Period Themed.
  • With Masque and Jongleur, judging is based on the performance of an original piece which is NOT necessarily authored by the performer(s). Authorship may be that of a period author or in the SCA. It may be a collaboration of authors. For Masque only, it may be a contemporarily written piece with performance SCA or Period Themed. The piece performed is to be an original performance or an original piece of work. For Jongleur only it will be an original composition either Period or Contemporarily created in a period style with supporting documentation.
  • Regarding Masque and Jongleur it is recommended if there is difficulty in choosing a winner, that originality of work (when a performer IS the author) be a judging consideration.
  • Should the difficulty in opting for a winner occur in Poet, Troubadour or Masque as to the quality of the performance and the work, then what additionally should be taken into consideration is to HOW the piece was performed. I.E. was it a good “reading” performance of a well written original piece or a good performance of a “memorized” well written piece? On occasion there may be entrants with technically correct, documented pieces who may not completely understand that the rules/guidelines of judging Poet, Troubadour, Masque, and Jongleur are strongly based on performance and NOT the other. PLEASE TRY TO REMEMBER no matter how technically correct a piece may be, it may lack the impact of a well done performance which may not be so technically correct in other areas. Poet, Troubadour and Masque Laureate competitions should be viewed as a good venue in which to encourage people to attempt more documentable styles of the performing/written arts. While at the same time encouraging them in their present endeavors. It is recommended that after the competition, the judges of the Jongleur Laureate critique not only the performance but also the documentation and highly encourage them to enter his or her piece in Art Sci where documentation is also a requirement and be entered under written or in the performance category at Art Sci.
 
Judging based on Personal Response
  • What was your “personal” response to the actual the performance? Do you think/feel you were “put” where the performer wanted you to be? Were you “properly/skillfully” emotionally manipulated during the performance? What kind of positive critique is being noted on behalf of each performer? What kind of positive critique will assist or encourage the performer in future endeavors? Whether as an author, ensemble, performer, choreographer, et al.
  • Did the performer(s) “play” to the audience or just the judges? Could they be heard if a vocal performance? Did the performance seem to falter at any point? How prepared did the performance appear?
 
Choosing the Winners or Finalists
  • All of the performers are to stand before the populace and judges and shall be acknowledged by applause only. It is recommended the response of the populace by applause toward each entrant be a contributing factor regarding the judges choice of a winner. After each entry has been acknowledged the judges will adjourn to a location away from the performers to discuss/critique each entry before making a final decision.
    • If there are seven (7) or more entries in a competition the judges have the option of choosing three (3) finalists.
      • The three (3) are to stand before the populace and judges and be acknowledged by applause only.
      • After each entry has been acknowledged the judges will adjourn to a location away from the performers to discuss/critique each entry before choosing the winner.
      • It is recommended the response of the audience by applause toward each entrant be a contributing factor regarding the judges choices of the winner or three (3) finalist.
    • If there are three (3) finalists they are to stand before the audience and judges.
      • Each entrant asked to repeat a part or all of the performance (a majority of judges decide which in advance) for the audience and the judges.
      • Each of the three (3) entrants once more acknowledged by applause only.
      • Once again, it is recommended the response of the audience by applause toward each of the finalist be a contributing factor regarding the choice of the winner.
      • After the three (3) finalists have been acknowledged the judges will adjourn to a location away from the performers to discuss/critique each of the three (3) before making a final decision.
Note to Judges
  • As this should be a positive learning/teaching experience for all involved in any of the Laureate Competitions it is highly recommended there be a question and answer period involving the performers and judges after every Laureate Competition.
  • The judges should try their best to be accessible to the performers after each competition, with a positive critique on whatever can be done to help them improve some aspect of their art. Or where they might be able to find more information to assist with improving their art.
 
No Two Performances of the Same Piece is Ever Duplicated
  • Therefore I perceive there should NOT be an absolute “rules” of judging. Yet there has to be a bit of consistency for any “guidelines” to be effective.
  • The Minister of the Laureate or a designate shall have the final word on any rulings which may be contrary to traditional judging during any Laureate Competition.
 
Consistency in Judging
  • The origins for judging the Laureate Competitions to the best of my knowledge (and from asking the old timers) was based, in some form, on populace acclaim. My own personal opinion (and as A/S Officer for the Laureates ) of populace participation when it comes to the performing is, I am all for it. A good performer is able to lure and catch the attention of an audience, even in a noisy feast hall. A good performance, as anything, requires a goodly amount of practice in private. With no fewer performances in front of others who can give a good critique on the piece of writing (if it’s original) and the actual performance. As experienced as “we” may be “we” still may get a case of nerves prior to performing in front of people. Especially, at times, under less than ideal circumstances , such as: a “captive” audience, poor acoustics, in a competition where you are under the eye of your peer group. The Laureate Competitions should be thought of a good place to learn how to deal with some of these less than ideal performance situations. I personally perceive the Laureate Competitions as a kind of “crown lyst/display” for the performers of the Kingdom. Outside of Art Sci, these competitions are truly the one major venue we have to showcase our work and to see, hear, and acknowledge the best (and those who will be the best one day) performers in the Kingdom. This is a kind of proving ground for those who are trying to master the most intangible of the arts…that of PERFORMANCE. These competitions should be a good place to get positive feed back and information on how to improve/hone their various and many arts having to do with performance.

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