Meistergesang Musical Performance

(Revised January 1998)

Entry includes both song and performance. “Song” is either original music and lyrics, original music for a period text, or original lyrics written to period music. Solo or group entries are allowed. For solo entry, entrant must sing own work, with or without assistance from other performers (e.g., an accompanist). For group entry, (a) more than one person wrote the song and at least one of them sings it, or (b) one person wrote the song and someone else sings it. Entries should preserve a period spirit, and seek to evoke a period reaction, while pleasing the modern ear. Period models include balladeers, minnesingers, troubadours, trouveres, bards, jongleurs, etc. Modern “filk” or spoof music is not allowed. Entrant must supply three copies of music with typed lyrics, and cite source for any non-original parts.

Meistergesang Musical Performance; Novice

Documentation

0-4 points. Must have at least a 3x5 card. More is acceptable.

  1. No documentation.
  2. Very inaccurate documentation of period element, if used.
  3. Minimal information with no source of period element and no rationale for original element.
  4. Minimal information with source of period element or rationale for original element.
  5. Gives source of period element, if used. Gives rationale for at least one aspect of original element (e.g., subject matter, musical style, performance style, instrumentation) in terms of general period models or gives rationale for most aspects of original work. (Cites at least one specific period model or precedent.).

Authenticity

0-4 points.

  1. Blatantly modern in subject matter, musical style or performance style.
  2. Deals with ambiguous themes in an ambiguous way; generally modern feel.
  3. Captures basic period sentiments with only a few inconsistencies.
  4. Both song and performance leave a period impression.
  5. Evokes a consistent period atmosphere; inspires the same reaction a period performer of equivalent skill would have inspired within his own context.

Complexity

1-5 points. Rank the ambition of the entry, not the workmanship, on a scale of 1-5 based on the following:

  • Difficulty of original elements of song (complex harmonies, elaborate rhyme scheme, adaptation to period element if used, etc.).
  • Difficulty of performance attempted (add points for self-accompaniment, vocal demands, dance or gestural use, audience interaction, etc.).
  • Scope of endeavor (length, number of performers; give higher score if both words and music are original).

Workmanship

1-5 points. Rank the success of the attempt on a scale of 1 to 5 based on the following:

  • Mastery of period style: Do song and performance evoke an appropriate mood?
  • Song: Is it coherent and logical? Does it get its message across?Ddo words work with music? Are period conventions used properly?
  • Performance: Is singer on-key? Are mistakes obvious? Is inflection, gesture, volume, expression appropriate?
  • Audience interaction and awareness: is song suited to its audience? Does performer draw listeners in? Is it interesting, exciting, enjoyable?

Creativity

1-6 points.

  1. Awkward performance; performer would rather be anywhere else.
  2. Performer seems bored, uninspired; performer lacks confidence.
  3. Completely straightforward performance of predictable music.
  4. Song or performance (but not both) shows some original or innovative elements that would not seem out of place in period context.
  5. Both song and performance show some original or innovative elements.
  6. Number five plus the performer “gets into” the piece; the audience enjoys the performance OR the performance is striking, using new or unusual ways to capture audience’s attention and to evoke a period mood.

Overall Quality

1-6 points. Evaluate the work as a whole. NOTE: This category is subjective; however, the judge should take into account prior category scores, aesthetic appeal, presentation, intuitive response, and other such items not previously addressed.

Meistergesang Musical Performance; Intermediate

Documentation

0-4 points. Must have at least 1 page: 2-3 pages preferable. More is acceptable.

  1. No documentation.
  2. Very inaccurate documentation of period element, if used.
  3. Minimal information; must include source of period element, if used. Little or no rationale for original element.
  4. Gives source of period element, if used. Gives rationale for at least one aspect of original element (e.g., subject matter, musical style, performance style, instrumentation) in terms of general period models.
  5. Number three, but gives rationale for most aspects of original work. Cites at least one specific period model or precedent.

Authenticity

0-4 points. Give one point for each element listed below that is present:

  1. Blatantly modern in subject matter, musical style or performance style.
  2. Deals with ambiguous themes in an ambiguous way; generally modern feel.
  3. Captures basic period sentiments with only a few inconsistencies.
  4. Both song and performance leave a period impression.
  5. Evokes a consistent period atmosphere; inspires the same reaction a period performer of equivalent skill would have inspired within his own context.

Complexity

1-5 points. Rank the ambition of the entry, NOT the workmanship, on a scale of 1-5, based on the following (as applies):

  • Difficulty of original elements of song (complex harmonies, elaborate rhyme scheme, adaptation to period element if used, etc.).
  • Difficulty of performance attempted (add points for self-accompaniment, vocal demands, dance or gestural use, audience interaction, etc.).
  • Scope of endeavor (length, number of performers; give higher score if both words and music are original).

Workmanship

1-5 points. Rank the success of the entry, on a scale of 1-5, based on the following:

  • Mastery of period style: Do song and performance evoke an appropriate mood?
  • Song: Is it coherent and logical? Does it get its message across? Do words work with music? Are period conventions used properly?
  • Performance: Is singer on-key? Are mistakes obvious? Is inflection, gesture, volume, expression appropriate?
  • Audience interaction and awareness: Is song suited to its audience? Does performer draw listeners in? Is it interesting, exciting, enjoyable?

Creativity

1-6 points.

1-4 points.

  1. Completely straightforward performance of predictable music.
  2. Song or performance (but not both) shows some original or innovative elements that would not seem out of place in period context.
  3. Both song and performance show some original or innovative elements.
  4. Unusual ideas or innovation in words or music or in their combination; performance is striking, using new or unusual ways to capture audience’s attention and to evoke a period mood.

Overall Quality

1-8 points. Evaluate the work as a whole. NOTE: This category is subjective; however, the judge should take into account prior category scores, aesthetic appeal, presentation, intuitive response, and other such items not previously addressed.

Meistergesang Musical Performance; Advanced

Documentation

0-4 points.

  1. No documentation, or very inaccurate documentation of period element, if used.
  2. Minimal information; must include source of period element, if used. Little or no rationale for original element.
  3. Gives source of period element, if used. Gives rationale for at least one aspect of original element (e.g., subject matter, musical style, performance style, instrumentation) in terms of general period models.
  4. Number two, but gives rationale for most aspects of original work. Cites at least one specific period model or precedent. Discusses relationship of period element, if used, to original element.
  5. Number three, with very complete discussion of all aspects of music, lyrics and performance style, and how they relate to each other and to a specific period precedent. Evidence of entrant’s understanding of period practice. Discussion of any appropriateness of the song to an occasion, person, etc.

Authenticity

0-4 points.

  1. Blatantly modern in subject matter, musical style or performance style.
  2. Deals with ambiguous themes in an ambiguous way; generally modern feel.
  3. Captures basic period sentiments with only a few inconsistencies.
  4. Both song and performance leave a period impression.
  5. Evokes a consistent period atmosphere; inspires the same reaction a period performer of equivalent skill would have inspired within his own context.

Complexity

0-6 points. Rank the ambition of the entry, not the workmanship, on a scale of 0-6 based on the following:

  • Difficulty of original elements of song (complex harmonies, elaborate rhyme scheme, adaptation to period element, if used, etc.).
  • Difficulty of performance attempted (add points for self-accompaniment, vocal demands, dance or gestural use, audience interaction, etc.).
  • Scope of endeavor (length, number of performers; give higher score if both words and music are original).

Workmanship

0-6 points. ) Rank the success of the entry on a scale of 0-6 based on the following:

  • Mastery of period style: Do song and performance evoke an appropriate mood?
  • Song: Is it coherent and logical? Does it get its message across? Do words work with music? Are period conventions used properly?
  • Performance: Is singer on-key? Are mistakes obvious? Is inflection, gesture, volume, expression appropriate?
  • Audience interaction and awareness: Is song suited to its audience? Does performer draw listeners in? Is it interesting, exciting, enjoyable?

Creativity

0-4 points.

  1. Completely straightforward performance of predictable music.
  2. Song or performance (but not both) shows some original or innovative elements that would not seem out of place in period context.
  3. Both song and performance show some original or innovative elements.
  4. Unusual ideas or innovation in words or music, or in their combination; performance is striking, using new or unusual ways to capture audience’s attention and to evoke a period mood.
  5. Number three, but more so: Song is particularly appropriate to a specific occasion, person, etc.; performance is fresh and exciting; a creative period performer would have used equivalent ideas in his music and performance.

Overall Quality

1-6 points. Evaluate the work as a whole. NOTE: This category is subjective; however, the judge should take into account prior category scores, aesthetic appeal, presentation, intuitive response, and other such items not previously addressed.