Ansteorra Bardic & Performance

Who we are and what we do…

Ansteorra has an active group of performers in all of the various preforming arts.  A performer is anyone who practices a performance art to entertain the populace.  This includes theater, spoken word, music and foolery.  For more information contact the Bardic Deputy or join one of the individual unofficial Facebook groups in your area of interest.


What is a Bard and what is a performer?

In the SCA a bard is inspired by the bards of the British Iles.  These bards were the history, news and traditions of that culture.  We consider it someone who presents songs, stories, prose, and poetry through competitions and bardic circles.  All Bards are performers but not all performers are bards.  Bards in the SCA have a tradition of campfire music, bardic circles, and wandering performers at events.  Bardic runs from SCA favorites to period documented pieces.

What is a Bardic Circle?

A Bardic circle is a circle of bards.

Is there any etiquette information I need?

What is a Bardic College vs the “College of Bards”?

A bardic college is a symposium, day of learning in the performing arts.  The College of Bards is a once active guild of performers.  It has been inactive for over two decades and is no longer considered a guild in Ansteorra.  For more information on the College of Bards and its history, see <ANSTEORRA WIKI>.

What about Theater?

Where can I find performance opportunities at events?

Where can I watch a performance at an event?

Ansteorra is not responsible for the content in these links provided. The material remains the property of the copywrite holder.

Period Source Material and Academic Groups

The Middle English Collection at the University of Virginia – Bibliography, and collection of Middle English Prose and Verse.  Includes a Middle English dictionary.

Petrucci Music Library – IMSPL –  A large library of public domain music.  Includes works in and out of period but a great resource for instrumental and vocal music in period.  Often includes scans of the original works in the original notation.  Includes MIDI and MP3 files for many of the pieces for those that do not read Sheet Music.

Shakespeare Electronic Archive – Website of the MIT Shakespeare Project.

Project MUSE –  Storytelling resources from Johns Hopkins University.

The Chaucer Songbook/CD Carol Lloyd Wood – ISBN 0786631465

Shakespeare’s Songbook Ross W. Duffin – ISBN 9780393058895

The Cantigas de Santa Maria – Scans and chant notation translations of The Cantigas de Santa Maria attributed to Alfonso X from the 13th Century in Iberia.  The emphasis is on singing but there are several suggestions on performance styles and lists of various academic works on the pieces.  

For additional resources go to the Music special interest page. 

Traditional Source Material, Independent Study Groups and Current Middle Ages Bardcraft

Frightening a Modern Audience with a Medieval Mindset  – A Guide To Storytelling in the SCA.

What Is A Bard? – An historical and mythological view of Bardic from al‑Sayyid Amr ibn Majid al‑Bakri al‑Amra.  Includes a bibliography and practical advice for performers. 

Cantaria Folk Song Archive – A library of traditional folk songs

A Treasury of Alliterative and Accentual Poetry – A treasury of both Period and Modern Middle Ages Poetry.  Includes some essays on performance and writing.

Baroness Kasha’s Singable Translations of Period Songs – Baroness Kasha from the Mid Realm maintains a page of song translations adjusted to properly fit the songs meter and emphasis.

What Heroes Do: The Works of Ragnar Ulfgarsson – The works of Master Bard of Ansteorra, Ragnar Ulfgarsson (Ron Snow).

Digital Tradition – Index of the Digital Traditional Folk Music Database.  Includes music and MIDI files to listen to tunes for those that do not read music.

Redwulf Songbook – The songbook of Mistress Rhiannon Redwulf.  Includes many broadside ballads and original current middle ages compositions.   Also includes instructions on reading chant verse.

Timeless Myths – Information on Ancient and Medieval mythology and legends in Europe.

Duke Conn MacNeill – The songs of Duke Conn MacNeill.  He has a mix of period, traditional and written tunes and poems.

SCA Minstrel Homepage – Bibliographies, and suggestions for period source material,  with some information on writing original  period style works.   Includes suggestions for instrumentalists and vocalists. 

Red Book of Montserrat – Sheet music for the Llibre Vermell de Montserrat a surviving work from 12th Century Spain.  Move to Music 

Trobar – Independent study group of the troubadours.

Medieval Poetry – Wikisource for medieval poetry.

Ancient Poetry – Wikisource for ancient poetry.  

Renaissance Poetry – Wikisource for renaissance poetry

Bardic and Performance Groups from Kingdoms

Bards of Ansteorra wiki pages and Facebook – Works of the Bards of Ansteorra   

Æthelmarc – Bardic College

Atlantia – Bardic Links

Calnotir – Songbook and Calonsong

Ealdormere – Bardic College

Lochac – Virtual Songbook and The Performers and Entertainers Guild

Comedia Group

Theater Groups

for other SCA bardic groups visit Known World Bardic Colleges

Helpful Software – Move Music to Music to eliminate duplication

Here is a list of sheet music composition and MIDI format tune players for those that do not read music.  Most composition software will play MIDI, Wave and Music XML files.

Link to Music page Software

Add that script writing software

Finale Music Notepad – Finale music software provides this free software for creating your own music compositions or for viewing other works created in software format.

Notion for IOS – Helpful music composition software for the iPad.  Not a free software program but one of the few for tablet.

Musescore – Another free music composition program.  Includes a forum of free compositions from other musicians and bards.

Noteworthy – Music notation for older Windows and MAC computers that is feature rich and inexpensive.

Noteflight – Cloud based notation software.  Has a pay and free service with various options and can be accessed from all tablets and PCs.

ScoreCloud – Another free score software program.  Also has a pay service with additional features.

Gregorio – Free software to make your own Gregorian chants and early notation sheet music.

 For changes, broken links, updates and suggestions to the Kingdom Arts and Sciences website please contact the A&S Web Minister