Renaissance Island Celebrates 8 years in Second Life

Today I spoke with Amza Hydroconis, who (along with PrinceJ3rd Figaro) is a co-manager of Renaissance Island, one of my favorite historical simulations in Second Life. Renaissance Island is celebrating 8 years in Second Life this June 2015, which is a pretty amazing feat! As a result, there will be many special events from June 12th – 21st (Click here to see events and locations.).

The Beautiful Clock Tower at the Center of Renaissance Island

The Beautiful Clock Tower at the Center of Renaissance Island

Lorraine: What is Renaissance Island, and how is it supported?

Amza: Renaissance Island is a Tudor Era Region meant to immerse visitors in the life and culture of Renaissance England. We offer activities for people interested in learning about the Tudor era, within a very casual role-play environment. It was established in February 2007 by a group of librarians, mainly to be available to educators and library science students, but has grown far beyond that purpose and is open to all. Renaissance Island is sponsored by the South Central Regional Library Council, and is supported mainly by donations and rent from merchants and residents. Its goal, though, is to become as self-sufficient as possible.

The Shops at Merchant Row, which offer historic clothes, furniture, musical instruments and more.

The Shops at Merchant Row, which offer historic clothes, furniture, musical instruments and more.

Lorraine: Role-playing might sound scary to some. Does a person need to dress authentically or know how to speak authentic Tudor-era English to participate in role-play at Renaissance Island?

Amza: One doesn’t need to role-play at Renaissance Island, but it is fun to try. For some people, role-playing comes naturally, while for others it doesn’t (I’m one of the latter.) If you want to role-play we would require being in period clothing; but having the ability to speak in the vernacular of the era would take a great deal of practice! I have considered having a custom babbler [translator] made, which would be extremely helpful in the speech of the day. Meanwhile, we provide notecards with some speech and dressing suggestions on the island, and our shops offer free and reasonable period clothing.  There are some free Renaissance outfits on our hunt this month, and we always offer some below deck in the pirate ship near the pub.

A free  male and female Renaissance outfit, which can be found during the 8th Anniversary hunt.

A free male and female Renaissance outfit, which can be found during the 8th Anniversary hunt.

Lorraine: What kinds of special things are happening for Renaissance Island’s 8th anniversary?

Amza: Right now, merchants have their wares on market stalls in the tiltyard [jousting area] for month-long sales, and there will be a mini-hunt in progress for the rest of the month.  We also have En Garde [fencing] for two Fridays, a Quadriathlon, which I recently introduced, for two Saturdays, there will be storytelling, a tour, our Parish Minstrel, Wald Schridde, will perform the 13th, before the Quadriathlon, a play in the Globe [ a re-creation of Shakespeare’s famous theatre] on the 21st then in the evening, fireworks and dancing. (see below for schedule).

Equipped with a horse and lance , and ready for jousting at the Tiltyard.

Equipped with a horse and lance, and ready for jousting at the Tiltyard.

Lorraine: What exactly is the Quadriathlon?

Amza: A Quadriathlon is an event consisting of four sporting events.  The Quadriathlon in Renaissance Island consists of Archery, En Garde, a timed horse run, and one round of jousting.  The scores from each event are totaled up to determine the winners.

Lorraine: That sounds like fun! What other kinds of activities regularly happen on Renaissance Island that people might be interested in? 

Amza: Once a month we have storytelling and Wald Schridde performs in the Boar’s Head Inn.  I wish there was more activity for Globe, as I like to see plays there. Examples of plays we have had in the Globe include an abridged version of Twelfth Night, and in April 2015, Traveler’s Tales. Coming up on June 21st, will be a performance of Faces of Love:  Scenes and Sonnets from Shakespeare. There is a monthly Quadriathlon on the first Saturday of the Month.

A faithful re-creation of the historic Globe Theatre at Renaissance Island.

A faithful re-creation of the historic Globe Theatre at Renaissance Island.

Lorraine: How can people get involved with Renaissance Island?

Amza: People can become involved by joining the open Parish of Reading Primley group, to be made aware of what events are planned, renting a house, sponsorships, attend meetings and help with events.  If they are really serious in wanting to help, they would become a part of the community.  It once had a very vibrant community and I would love to see it become so once again.

Some charming Tudor-style rental homes available at Renaissance Island.

Some charming Tudor-style rental homes available at Renaissance Island.

Lorraine: Is there anything else that you would like us to know about Renaissance Island?

Amza: We consider ourselves a welcoming region.  No matter what avatar a person wears, if they have a real, genuine interest in what we are trying to achieve here, they would be more than welcome.

Schedule of Events during June 2015 for Renaissance Island’s 8th Anniversary.
(All times are Second Life Time /Pacific. Must have Second Life Viewer/Account for links to work.)

June 12 Event
6 PM En Garde
Hosted by Liska Bystrouska
Tiltyard: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Renaissance%20Island/52/112/27

June 13 Event
2 PM
Parish Minstrel, Wald Schridde, will perform in the tiltyard
3 PM Quadriathlon
Hosted by Empress Amza Hydraconis Brinner
Tiltyard: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Renaissance%20Island/52/112/27

June 14 Event
11 AM A service in St Minutia’s Church
Officiated by Vicar Torrelle
Church: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Renaissance%20Island/104/119/27

12 PM Storytelling
Hosted by Lady Korrigan Keynes
Boar’s Head Inn: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Renaissance%20Island/191/190/27

1 PM A tour of Renaissance Island
Guide:  Empress Amza Hydraconis Brinner

June 19 Event
6 PM En Garde
Hosted by Liska Bystrouska
Tiltyard: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Renaissance%20Island/52/112/27

June 20 Event
3 PM Quadriathlon
Hosted by Empress Amza Hydraconis Brinner
Tiltyard: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Renaissance%20Island/52/112/27

June 21 Event
12 Noon  Faces of Love:  Scenes and Sonnets from Shakespeare
Presented by Bajoy, Iddy Schmooz, and Moon Reverie.
Globe Theatre: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Renaissance%20Island/195/53/27

6 PM Dance/ball/Fireworks
Music provided by Nyza Stillwater
Fireworks provided by Nyza Stillwater

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