Sep. 12th, 2016 04:45 pm
sally_maria: (TS Sleep)
Oxonmoot is the Tolkien Society's annual social/academic event, held in Oxford in September for over 40 years. (This was my 19th, but I know there are those on my flist who've been going rather longer.)

It's been a highlight of my year almost from the beginning - a chance to spend the weekend with friends, to learn, to relax and to stay up far too late and try unusual alcohol. :-)

Danish Ent Beer, Finnish Cloudberry Liqueur and Pudding Vodkas )

There were many interesting papers given on a wide range of Tolkien-related topics, and I didn't manage to get to anything like all of them.

These were some of my favourites )

What made this year even better than usual, though, was a special performance of Leaf by Niggle, by Richard Medrington and the Puppet State Theatre Company, just for us. The work involved in getting the dining hall set up as a theatre space (and taking it down afterwards) was considerable, but it was so worth it. It was a lovely, moving, and thought-provoking version, one actor, some family heirlooms and Tolkien's text presented almost complete. Another speaker, Joel Cornah, had talked earlier in the day about the importance of getting the "voice" right in any Tolkien adaptation, and this very much did.

If you get the chance to see it (and at the moment it seems to be touring mostly in Scotland), I'd say you really should - it's just wonderful, both as an adaptation and a piece of theatre.

Oxonmoot +

Sep. 23rd, 2015 09:26 pm
sally_maria: (TS Sleep)
I've always been useless at writing up my weekends, even when most people were here to read it, and again I've failed to do so.

So, rather than me droning on, have some videos. :-)

Author Joel Cornah on
Tolkien and Doctor Who

Eminent Tolkien scholar Doctor Dimitra Fimi on
Constructions of Childhood in Tolkien's Legendarium

And a short video covering the whole event by the Sci fi Fantasy Network (yes, you can see me, or at least my back, for a few seconds. ;-D)

And in case you've seen them all already, have a link to some fun icons - Cats and Books, by oraclegreen.


Sep. 29th, 2013 06:04 pm
sally_maria: (TS Sleep)
Was last weekend, and I had a good time, as I usually do. :-)

It was lovely to see many friends again, in such beautiful surroundings - though odd not to have to be much involved in the organisation, after 4 years. It all went very well, and Toryboy did an excellent job at Enyaliƫ, I thought. (As I said to several people at the event, I think it is in many ways the most difficult of the Chairman's tasks. It's so public, and so important, but it's also very personal - it's all down to you to decide what to say and how to say it.)

The LotR and Hobbit Lego saw some active use in Ops/Hospitality - one favourite adaptation was:
The Web Enabled Troll )

Highlights of the weekend for me included Jemima Catlin, the artist who has created the new illustrated edition of the Hobbit, released a few days before the weekend. It was very interesting to hear her talk about her inspirations and I found I got so much more out of the illustrations through being encouraged to really look at them - they have a lot of small details that are easy to miss at first glance.
Banner made by another attendee )

One point that I would probably have missed, for example, the way she used the famous photo of the Professor leaning back against a tree as inspiration for Bilbo's pose on the cover, as you can see in the banner.

Another thing that I was very much looking forward to was not strictly an Oxonmoot event, though we did get a special viewing, but was the Magical Worlds exhibition at the Bodleian. It's a free exhibition, on until the 27th October, and I highly recommend it to any one who loves children's fantastic writing. It contains everything from illuminated medieval manuscripts to the 6 circles, from Susan Cooper's Dark is Rising series (Wood, Bronze, Iron, Water, Fire, Stone). It also has several of Tolkien's original illustrations for the Hobbit, the first page of the handwritten manuscript for "The Fall of Arthur" and also manuscripts from authors such as Alan Garner and Philip Pullman. It was a lovely way to spend a hour in the company of other fans. :-)

Next year it's going to be an extended event, starting on the Thursday - definitely looking forward to it.
sally_maria: (TS Sleep)
I had far too little sleep this weekend, so I don't have the energy for a proper post but I just wanted to show off the wonderful leaving gift I was presented with at the AGM yesterday afternoon.

If anything, I suppose I was expecting the standard bottle, but instead I received a copy of The Hobbit with a custom-made leather cover.

See here )

Isn't it gorgeous?


Sep. 7th, 2012 08:38 pm
sally_maria: (TS Sleep)
After some worrying times when I got back from Return of the Ring and discovered I was rota'd to work the Oxonmoot weekend, I've managed to swap the Saturday with somebody, so I will be there from Friday night, though it may not be until 7pm or so.

After failing to bring Fluxx to RotR - mea culpa - I'm wondering which version(s) (if any) people would like me to bring to Oxonmoot.

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 4

Which Fluxx should I bring to Oxonmoot?

View Answers

Monty Python - I want to talk in silly voices
2 (50.0%)

Martian - Old School Sci-Fi all the way
2 (50.0%)

Pirate - I want the Captain's Hat
2 (50.0%)

Eco - Save the World
1 (25.0%)

Original - I don't need all these fancy variants
2 (50.0%)

I've never played Fluxx and have no idea what you are talking about
0 (0.0%)

I'm not coming to Oxonmoot
2 (50.0%)

You should bring chocolate cake/sally brownies
2 (50.0%)

sally_maria: (TS Sleep)
I've kept the same sub-heading on my journal for the last five years, but I decided that the change in my life this weekend deserved a new one.

On Saturday the Tolkien Society held its AGM, and I was elected Chairman, after doing the job as Acting Chairman since January. I've been on the committee as Secretary for 11 years, but I never expected the hot seat. :-) Still, I was persuaded that I was the best person available for the post and so here I am....

It was a slightly stressful weekend, but helped by good friends, a wonderful location and a good Annual dinner yesterday evening. Next year I'll even remember to take the text of the Standing Silence with me. ;-)


sally_maria: Daniel Jackson looking sideways (Default)
wrong but wromantic

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