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Sneak peek at our 2008 storyline!


Some people may have noticed that the storyline hasn't "officially" been posted yet, but....

Check out the Educational Program section. The Well Learned newsletter that the schools get is posted with....a storyline. Its pretty much the same as that during the faire days so I thought I'd pass on the little hint. Rehearsals are already in full swing and we all cant wait to take it to the streets soon!

aka Lady Mary Brown, Dowager Countess of Southampton

Lady Mikayla of Phoenicia:
Gee, I WONDER who could possibly be playing Ivan???   ::)

Mums the word on anything that isn't directly posted on that site...and even some of that may change.  ;D

Lady Mikayla of Phoenicia:
Ahhh yes, an-ti-ci-pa-tion...I'll let my woman's intuition run amuck, amuck, amuck and see how close we get!!!   :o 

Those of you who may not have Adobe is the information from

Ivan the Terrible
(And His Eccentric Quest to Find an English Wife)

Although the Tsar of Muscavoy has yet to grace our British shores, reports of his rather extravagant exploits have already reached Her Majesty's ears.  As fancy takes flight as fancy is oft-times wont to do, we find ourselves asking...what if?  What if Ivan the Terrible were to come to England and meet our Illustrious Queen?  What if he were to behave as outrageously here in our heartland as he doth in his own Motherland?

Thus it is that some of the most unbelievable - yet true - chronicles of Ivan's reign unfold here in our very own Shire.

The Many Wives of Ivan the Terrible...
King Ivan IV of Muscovy is a tyrant who knows not the meaning of moderation.  It hath been rumoured that he drinketh overmuch, he laugheth over-loudly and he loveth and hateth far too fiercely.  Nonetheless, by all reports, Ivan is deftly intelligent and despite his cruelty, his reign is a great one.  In his homeland he is called Ivan "Grozny," which is often translated as "the Terrible," but perhaps "the Awesome" would be more accurate for Ivan the Terrible inspires Awe.

The human instrument of Ivan the Awesome's rule are the "Oprichniki."  They are a squadron of soldiers that have been handpicked by Ivan.  They have sworn a personal oath of allegiance to him and only him.  The mere sight of the Oprichniki instills fear:  They Dress in Black and ride Black horses.  Each carries  upon his saddle the head of a dog.  Ivan himself is well known to be a very accomplished rider and hath killed many men with spear and lance from horseback.

Ivan is also well known for his matrimonial troubles.  In his quest for an heir, Ivan hath stood at the wedding altar no less than three times thus far in his great reign.  Many of his wives have been young Princesses and the daughters of his noblemen brought to the Tsar for his review.  It seems that prospective Tsarinas are first presented to him in a kind of Pageant after which he chooses his newest bride.

And now, unbeknownst to Our Queen, Ivan the Terrible's third wife has died in faraway Muscovy and Ivan himself hath mysteriously disappeared from his court.  Rumour has it that he hath made landfall here in England, accompanied by his dreaded Black Knights, on a quest to find the next Tsarina of Muscovy.  It seems that our fair English damsels have caught his eye.

Meanwhile, Here in England...
It is a glorious day in the Shire as Her Majesty arrives to enjoy Her annual Mount Hope holiday.  The tantalizing aromas of a thousand hearty foods from around the world co-mingle with the floral fragrances wafting sweetly from the town gardens so lovingly planted in Her Honour.  Villagers bustle here and shopkeepers hustle there in unbridled anticipation.  The whole town hums with excitement.  The Queen has returned and all is well in the Shire.

At the Court of Gloriana, Her Majesty greets her people most magnanimously and announces rather giddily that she is quite excited to be playing today's Living Chess Match against her longtime friend and advisor, Sir Robert Dudley.

Ivan the Terrible Takes a Wife...Literally...
Suddenly, from over the hill, the Awesome Tsar of Muscovy, Ivan IV and his Black Knights present themselves before the Court.  Ivan steps boldly forward and greets our radiant Elizabeth as though he were Her equal!  Many of our noble lords, most especially Lord Dudley, are taken aback, but the Queen halts them in their advance, lest they lay their bare English steel against cold Muscovy flesh.  "After all is said and done," She placates, "he is the head of both church and state in Muscovy, as I am here in England."  Thus mollified, the nobles do repent themselves and stand muttering variously in corners.  Her Majesty then invites Ivan to play against Her at Chess.  Dudley begins to protest that he was supposed to play against the Queen, but he is hushed by a harsh tone from his Sovereign Lady.

His Awesome-ness interrupts to explain his presence and his quest for a Queen.  At his command, his men present an extravagant gift.  He then proclaims that all beautiful, eligible women of the Shire are to be presented before him this very afternoon.  They will hold a Pageant of Princesses and he will choose the best, which of course he will marry.

Queen Bess is not sure whether or not to be amused or offended.  The Tsar and his men are eccentrically charming and several Ladies of the Court step forward, eager to become the Queen of All of Muscovy.

The Tsar's request is so unusual and the ladies' interest so great, that Elizabeth proposes a game to help her decide their course.  If Ivan and his Muscovy Knights can best Robert Dudley and his English Knights in a Tournament of Arms, van will be permitted to hold his Pageant of Princesses upon the Chessboard before She and Ivan compete in their Chess Match.  If Sir Robert and his Knights win, Ivan must swear an oath to leave England without a bride.  The Challenge is accepted and all go forth into the festivities of the day.

Source:  Well Learn-Ed at



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