Events, Excursions & Workshops

There's lots to see and do at IMC 2021!

From networking activities to virtual exhibitions...

... workshops and performances,

... And even a virtual tour!

Events and Activities

For IMC 2021, we are delighted to be able to provide another varied virtual events programme for our delgates to enjoy. Events on offer will include a wide-ranging fringe events programme from our delegates and exhibitors, workshops and demonstrations from our craft fair exhibitors, and by popular demand, the celebrated IMC Disco, DJ'ed once again by Alaric Hall along with South Leeds Radio. All IMC events, excursions, and workshops are only available to registered delegates via the virtual event platform. Events are given in order of date and time.

Delegate-led Fringe Events

Following the success of our ‘fringe events’ programme at last summer’s vIMC 2020, delegates will once again be invited to organise and host online fringe events. These can be an opportunity to meet, network, and socialise with other delegates or to bring together colleagues interested in a particular area or field.

These can be formal or informal, and can be arranged by a single person, group, or organisation and the deadline for proposing fringe events is 10 May 2021.

Check out the full IMC 2021 Fringe Event Programme here.

European Research Council (ERC) grants: What are they, how to apply?

Monday 05 July, 13.00-14.00. This event is free of charge.

European Research Council (ERC) Grants: What are they, how to apply? Hosted by Catherine Balleriaux (Scientific Officer, European Research Council Executive Agency).

The European Research Council, set up in 2007, is the first pan-European funding body that supports investigator-driven frontier research across all fields on the sole basis of scientific excellence.

The ERC funding schemes are open to ambitious researchers of any nationality or age who wish to carry out their research in a public or private research organisation located in one of the EU Member States or in associated countries.

There are four core funding schemes:

Starting Grants: for researchers with 2-7 years of experience since completion of PhD, with a scientific track record showing great promise (grants up to €1,5 million for 5 years);

Consolidator Grants: for researchers with over 7 and up to 12 years of experience since completion of PhD, with an excellent mid-career scientific track record (grants up to €2 million for 5 years);

Advanced Grants: for established and scientifically independent researchers who are leaders in their field of research (grants up to €2.5 million for 5 years);

Synergy Grants: for a group of 2 to 4 researchers working together and bringing different skills and resources to tackle ambitious research problems. There is no specific eligibility criteria regarding academic career level for ERC Synergy Grants. One researcher per group can be hosted by an institution outside of the EU or Associated Countries (grants up to €10 million for 6 years).

The session will feature a short presentation about the application and selection process of ERC grants, with a focus on medieval history projects. The presentation will be followed by a Q&A.

Whether you are thinking of applying or just curious, this session might be a game-changer for your career.

Discover Cyrillic Calligraphy and Illumination: A Workshop on the Theory and Practice of an Ancient Art

Monday 05 July, 14.00-17.00. Price: £10.00

Discover Cyrillic Calligraphy and Illumination: A Workshop on the Theory and Practice of an Ancient Art directed by Edgar Rops and Anastasija Ropa

Cyrillic calligraphy is an ancient art, dating back to the creation of the Cyrillic alphabet in the ninth century. It is also a living tradition, as Cyrillic scripts are widely used today: you can see them on icons, in decorations for devotional literature and fairy tales, and in many other contexts.

This workshop will begin with a presentation about the history of Cyrillic calligraphy and a description of different styles and scripts (the uncial, the half-uncial, and the cursive). Participants will learn about the differences between traditional illumination styles in medieval and early modern manuscripts and will see examples of illuminated manuscripts that can be used as inspirations for their own work. In the practical part, participants will be introduced to the basics of creating simple objects of art, such as cards, name tags, and bookmarks, as well as learning the steps for creating more complex art, such as copying the page of an existing historical manuscript or creating their own manuscript page by combining elements of existing manuscripts.

The first, theoretical part will last for 40 minutes and will be followed by a 20-minute question and answer section. In the second, practical part, the tutors will demonstrate how to shape letters in uncial, from the simplest to the more complex ones. The participants will then be able to practice some simple words and phrases. This part of the workshop will last for an hour, with 40 minutes for the explanation and 20 minutes for individual practice, questions, and discussion. During the last hour, the tutors will outline the principal steps in producing illuminated calligraphic art: laying out the page, writing the text, tracing the design on a separate slip of paper and copying it onto the page, and finally coloring the illumination. The participants can then practice creating a bookmark with the first words from the Gospel of John (‘In the beginning was the word’, which in the Gospel of Miroslav and other lectionaries is preceded by a decorated initial).

Participants in the workshop will need to provide their own materials, including a calligraphy pen (or nib(s), holder, and ink), paper (ruled paper and/or watercolour or other good quality paper), ruler, soft pencil, eraser, paint (watercolour paints or pencils. gouache, or tempura paint).

Edgar and Anastasija study the medieval and early modern documents produced in Livonia, at the crossroads of eastern and western traditions of writing, and the artistic practices that went into  the decoration of historical documents, presenting their research at international venues, with peer-reviewed publications to their credit. Edgar is a lawyer and legal historian by education, with a passion for historical calligraphy. He has also organised calligraphy workshops for general audiences, both with and without experience in calligraphy, and calligraphy-based team building activities. Anastasija’s PhD research involved a study of medieval romance, with a long-standing interest in manuscripts and charters produced and circulated in medieval Livonia.

This workshop can only accommodate a limited number of participants. Early booking is recommended.

Boogie Knights, performed by Joglaresa

Monday 05 July, 17.00. Price: £8.00

Boogie Knights, performed by Joglaresa

Join early music group Joglaresa for a plague party video concert where the knights are villainous, the dancers seductive, plus some more reflective musings on our mortality. Alongside the medieval ‘hit’ Machaut’s Douce dame jolie there are many lesser-known pieces that you’ll wish you’d always known – some of medieval Europe’s ‘funkiest’ tunes.
Directed by Belinda Sykes, Joglaresa ensemble has been playing since 1992. Now well-established, this London-based ensemble is particularly interesting for the way in which they imaginatively push, and often transcend, the limits of what is often thought of as early music. They were the first medieval band to develop a programme of songs entirely devoted to Mary Magdalen, and they were pioneers in programming medieval Jewish and Arabic texts for otherwise more-commonplace Iberian and Crusades programmes – their Crusades programme (The Scimitar and the Sword) represents the voices of Judaism and Islam alongside the Christian viewpoint, and their Arts Council-award-winning programme of medieval Hebrew/Arabic/Spanish song (Dreams of Andalusia) includes songs by medieval Arab-Andalusian poets and Spanish-Hebrew poets.

Their work focuses on connecting ancient and traditional musics but, rather than create a ‘fusion’ or a surreal mix of these styles, they aim to use their combined experiences (upbringings drenched in traditional Irish, English, Maghrebi, Balkan, and Middle Eastern music) to create a homogenous sound – Joglaresa members spent years in North Africa and the Middle East absorbing the best traditional tunes and learning the local languages.

Their performances include the Aldeburgh Festival, York Early Music Festival, London’s Lufthansa Festival, the Queen Elizabeth Hall (London), St David’s Hall (Cardiff), London’s Barbican Centre, Sana’a & Aden (Yemen), Brezice Early Music Festival (Slovenia), Istanbul, Amsterdam International Festival of Jewish Music, and Chinchilla Early Music Festival, not to mentions tours in Germany, Belgium, Italy, and Holland as well as numerous radio broadcasts.

After the premiere, the concert will be available for one week. Ticketholders will be able to watch the concert at a time of their choosing and will be able to watch the concert more than once. To book, please go to https://www.onjam.tv/joglaresa/joglaresa-presents-boogie-knights

FAQs: https://support.onjam.tv/en/category/audience-members-1pmujv5/

Medieval Society Pub Quiz

Monday 05 July, 19:00-20:30. This event is free of charge.

Medieval Society Pub Quiz hosted by LUU Medieval Society

Come wind down after your second day of sessions with the annual Medieval Society pub quiz! The LUU Medieval Society will re-imagine the traditional British pub quiz by asking IMC delegates to answer questions posed by the Medieval Society quizmaster on all things medieval. This is your chance to compete for everlasting glory – or at least virtual praise! So grab a pint or drink of your choice and bring your A-game!

The LUU Medieval Society was formed in 2013 in order to promote a thriving community of medievalists in the University and city of Leeds. To learn more about LUU Medieval Society, visit www.luu.org.uk/medieval/.

The Canterbury Tales: Audio Drama

Monday 05 July, 20:30-22:00. This event is free of charge.

The Canterbury Tales: Audio Drama performed by The Lords of Misrule

The Lords of Misrule are an amateur dramatics society based at the Centre for Medieval Studies at the University of York. With a tradition of performing medieval/early modern drama spanning back nearly 50 years and going strong, it seemed that all would be lost when COVID-19 hit the UK, and theatres across the country shut their doors.

But the Lords of Misrule were not that easily daunted – come rain or shine, Lords had always been counted on to put on a show. And so we did. Along with other creatives across the world, Lords went virtual. The end result was The Canterbury Tales – an original translation from the Lords of Misrule presented for the first time as an audio drama.

Our translation of the medieval classic was first performed in 2016 in a series of outdoor performances outside York Minster, free to anyone who wished to attend (hence why some elements of this production are a bit more family friendly than the original!). When faced with the challenge of which text to pick for an audio drama, it made perfect sense: every tale is centered around a vibrant narrator who relays every part of the action to their listeners, and the tales of the pilgrims have never lost their enduring appeal.

The format of an audio drama made possible what we could have never achieved before; while we miss our spot in York’s local churches and our attic of props and costumes lovingly passed down over the years, we could create battle scenes, mystical dances, prison cells, and more. And in the spirit of staying together at home, we invited past and present members of Lords to participate from every corner of the country and the world, made up mostly of alumni from the Centre for Medieval Studies. It attracted one of our largest casts in our history, and the production became a true celebration of both The Canterbury Tales, and of the Lords of Misrule as a community and a force for good.

We are truly delighted to present this special broadcast of the play for IMC attendees this year, followed by a Q&A with Director Nicola Peard, Producer Erin Bunce, and some of the play’s original translators: Dr Emily Hansen, Dr Ross McIntire, and Alana Bennett. We sincerely hope you enjoy the play.

In lieu of a ticket fee and in the spirit of community and collaboration in the field of medieval academic study, we ask that you consider a donation to the Mark Ormrod Memorial Fund. The fund commemorates the former Director of the Centre for Medieval Studies, Dr Mark Ormrod, and goes toward several scholarships at the Centre and across the University of York.

MedievalWiki @ Leeds IMC: Wikidata Editing Workshop

Tuesday 06 July, 14.00-16.00. This event is free of charge.

MedievalWiki @ Leeds IMC: Wikidata Editing Workshop directed by Lucy Moore, Beth Whalley & Fran Allfrey

In this workshop, we will introduce participants to the wonderful world of Wikidata, and participants will then have time to contribute to the task of narrowing the gender and race gap on Wikipedia.

Wikidata is, as the name suggests, a database that seeks to categorise and link together people, places, and objects of all kinds. Most relevant to academics, a Wikidata item can bring together the name of a person with any institutional affiliation(s), awards, specialisms, and notable books. While not all medievalists may reach the (often racist and sexist) criteria for ‘notability’ for a full Wikipedia page, Wikidata information does not have the same requirements.

No prior experience is required. After a brief introduction to Wikidata, participants will receive training in creating, editing, and linking Wikidata entries, before putting that training into practice in the second half of the workshop.

Minimal preparation is required to take part: we ask that participants bring along an article/chapter/book by a medieval scholar or about an artist who works with medieval materials. To address the systemic inequality that affects Wikipedia, medieval studies, and the wider world, we encourage participants to focus on scholars of colour, Black scholars, women, queer scholars, and scholars who engage with critical race, gender, sexuality, or feminist studies.

Beth Whalley works at the intersection of early English studies, political ecology, and creative-critical practice. Her PhD was on the cultures of medieval and modern waterways; forthcoming articles explore watercraft in early English riddles, and memories of the Battle of Maldon in the modern Blackwater Estuary. Lucy Moore is a postgraduate researcher in Archaeology at the University of York, studying Northumbrian coinage in the ninth-century. She is also a curator, museum activist, and active Wikipedian. Fran Allfrey is a museum educator and wikipedian. She researches the presentation of Old English poems and early medieval material culture in mass media, community heritage projects, and museums (with a current focus on Beowulf and Sutton Hoo.

This workshop can only accommodate a limited number of participants. If you are interested in participating in this workshop, please express interest when you register for the IMC. Everyone who has expressed interest will be contacted by email nearer to the time and invited to sign up for the workshop. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Opus Anglicanum Embroidery Workshop

Tuesday 06 July, 16.30-18.00. Price £20 (lesson only), £40 + shipping (including lesson and embroidery kit).

Opus Anglicanum Embroidery Workshop directed by Tanya Bentham

‘Opus Anglicanum’ (English work) is fine needlework of medieval England created for ecclesiastical or secular use on clothing, hangings, or other textiles, often using gold and silver threads on rich velvet or linen fabric. This embroidery, usually filled with elaborate imagery including people, animals, and plants, was in great demand across Europe, particularly from the late 12th to mid-14th centuries. A luxury product, it was often used for diplomatic gifts. In 2017, Opus Anglicanum was the subject of an exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

This workshop provides a rare opportunity to learn the techniques of Opus Anglicanum. Participants will learn the basic stitches – split and underside, and then put these techniques in practice to create the face of a young woman.

Participants will receive full instructions by PDF including a list of required materials; they will also have the option of purchasing a materials kit from Tanya’s website (Opus Anglicanum Embroidery). The materials kit will include a needle, marked linen canvas, as well as silk and gold threads. While every effort will be made to ensure the kit can be posted to as many countries as possible, before ordering your kit, please take note of any postal restrictions in your country, as well as any possible customs restrictions. Please bear in mind that some of these restrictions have recently changed due to Brexit coming fully into effect this year.

The class will be delivered via pre-recorded video demonstrations so that participants can work at their own pace. IMC delegates booking the course will also have access to an exclusive Q&A session on Pathable with Tanya during the conference.

Tanya Bentham has been a re-enactor for years, working the last 20 as a professional living historian. Her main focus has always been on textiles, especially embroidery, but also making detours into costume, natural dyeing, weaving, millinery, and silver-smithing. She has delivered workshops for numerous museums, schools, and community organisations throughout Yorkshire. Her books, Opus Anglicanum: A Handbook and Bayeux Stitch: A Practical Handbook are forthcoming as part of the Crowood Press embroidery series.

If you are interested in participating in this workshop, please express interest when you register for the IMC. Everyone who has expressed interest will be contacted by email nearer to the time and invited to sign up and pay for the workshop via the Opus Anglicanum Embroidery website.

The workshop is also available to non-IMC delegates, though this will not include access the live virtual workshop during IMC week. To book the event, please go to https://www.opusanglicanumembroidery.com/shop/online-courses/2?page=1&limit=60&sort_by=popularity_score&sort_order=desc and select either ‘IMC opus anglicanum lady face’ (£45) or  ‘IMC 2021 opus anglicanum lady face class – digital media only’ (£20).

Performance as Pedagogy: Filming the Old English Elegies

Tuesday 06 July, 20.30-22.00. This event is free of charge.

Performance as Pedagogy: Filming the Old English Elegies. A Special Screening with Director Jo. George

The term ‘Old English Elegies’ refers to a group of short poems, most of which are preserved in the 11th-century manuscript known as the Exeter Book. Although none of these poems are elegies in the strictest sense, they share a tone of personal lament.

Jo. George has started a project of which the ultimate aim is to adapt all of the Old English elegies to film. These films will be made available as an educational package that should prove invaluable to teachers of Old English as well as scholars working on the burgeoning topic of Old English poetry and performativity. The elegies are filmed using her own modern English translations to make them available to a wider audience, but the package will also include a programme that enables the user to listen to the poems in the original language as well. Many of the actors, musicians, and technicians involved in the making of these films largely have been drawn from the JOOT Theatre Company, which was founded by Jo. George in 1992. To date, The Husband’s Message, The Ruin, The Wanderer, and Wulf and Eadwacer have been completed; these are the films that will be screened at this event.

The JOOT Theatre Company is based at the University of Dundee. The Company initially devoted itself to the production of medieval mystery and morality plays, but in more recent times has extended its remit to include, for example, its own stage adaptation of Derek Jarman’s unfilmed screenplay of Bob-Up-A-Down (which has a medieval setting). Currently, JOOT has embarked upon a project to adapt a series of Older Scots poems for the stage, the first being Robert Henryson’s Testament of Cresseid. Through these adaptations, audiences are given the unique opportunity of seeing medieval Scottish poetry brought to life on the stage as well as experiencing the remarkable performative quality of this early verse. JOOT has, in addition, recently branched out into film and is involved in a major project to adapt the Old English elegies for the screen.

Jo George is a Senior Lecturer in English & Theatre Studies at the University of Dundee, where she also runs the JOOT Theatre Company. She has published widely on such topics as Old English poetry, early drama, the Pre-Raphaelites and the films of Derek Jarman.

Since 2008, Medievalists.net has billed itself as the media site for the Middle Ages, offering news, articles, and videos about medieval studies. It is one of the largest online resources about the Middle Ages, receiving over three-quarters of a million page views per month and with a large social media following of over 75,000 followers on Twitter alone.

How a Medievalist Can Earn Income outside Academia: A Professional Development Workshop

Wednesday 07 July, 14:00-15:30. This workshop is free of charge.

How a Medievalist Can Earn Income outside Academia: A Professional Development Workshop sponsored by Medievalists.net and directed by Danièle Cybulskie & Peter Konieczny

Are you exploring a career in medieval studies, but wondering what opportunities exist outside of working in a university? This 90-minute seminar will take a look at how medievalists can earn money, perhaps find a career, using their knowledge about the Middle Ages. Specifically, we take a look at following these possible paths:

  • Books – writing for publishers and self-publishing
  • Magazines – writing for history magazines and non-history magazines
  • Websites – creating your own website or digital content
  • Youtube and Podcasting – finding ways to create your own media brand

Leading the discussion is Peter Konieczny the founder of Medievalists.net, the largest website devoted to the Middle Ages. He is also the editor of Medieval Warfare magazine. Joining him will be Danièle Cybulskie, author of The Five-Minute Medievalist.

Peter Konieczny was a librarian at the University of Toronto before becoming part-owner of Medievalists.net. He has been developing websites for 15 years and is based in Toronto. Peter has extensive experience in web design, blogging, social media, and the use of digital media to support the dissemination of scholarship to wide-ranging audiences. In 2016 he also became the editor of Medieval Warfare magazine.

Danièle Cybulskie, also known as the Five-Minute Medievalist, is a lifelong lover of Arthurian stories and bold Robin Hood. She studied Cultural Studies and English Literature at Trent University, earning her Master’s degree in English Literature at the University of Toronto, where she specialized in medieval literature and Renaissance drama. Currently, she teaches an online course on medievalism through OntarioLearn, and writes weekly articles for Medievalists.net and The Medieval Magazine. Recently she published Life in Medieval Europe: Fact and Fiction. When she is not reading or writing, Danièle can be found drinking tea, practicing archery, or sometimes building a backyard trebuchet.

Folded Almanac Girdle Book: A Bookbinding Workshop

Wednesday 07 July, 16.30-18.00. Price £5 (lesson only), £30 + shipping (including lesson and vegan kit), £35 +shipping (including lesson and leather kit).

Folded Almanac Girdle Book: A Bookbinding Workshop directed by Linette Withers

Girdle books were small portable books worn by monks, clergymen, and aristocratic nobles as a popular accessory to medieval costume between the 13th and 16th centuries. They consisted of a book whose leather binding continued loose below the cover of the book in a long tapered tail with a large knot at the end which could be tucked into one’s girdle or belt. The knot was usually strips of leather woven together for durability. The book hung upside down and backwards so that when swung upwards it was ready for reading.

This class is an irreverent look at making your own useable ‘medieval’ almanac to hang off your belt, loosely inspired by Oxford, Bodleian Library MS. Ashmole 6, a girdle book from the 15th century which contains an astronomical and astrological calendar. Participants can decorate their girdle book pages with their own useful facts and images before or after binding their book. There will also be an option to print out decorative pages, supplied by Anachronalia in advance of the course.

Participants will be sent the full instructions by PDF including a list of required materials and suggested tools and have the option of purchasing a materials kit from Anachronalia in advance of the conference. The materials kit will contain paper, cover materials, glue, thread, needle, and printed instructions. Leather and vegan options are available. Prices shown above do not include shipping. While every effort will be made to ensure the kit can be posted to as many countries as possible, before ordering your kit, please take note of any postal restrictions in your country in regards to leather and glue, as well as any possible customs restrictions. Please bear in mind that some of these restrictions have recently changed in the UK due to Brexit coming fully into effect this year.

The class will be delivered via pre-recorded video demonstrations so that participants can work at their own pace. IMC delegates booking the course will also have access to an exclusive Q&A session on Pathable with Linette during the conference.

Linette Withers completed an MA in Medieval Studies at the University of Leeds before joining the IMC team as Senior Congress Officer. She has been binding books since 2005 and since 2012 has worked as a professional book binder, producing codices that are inspired by historical books. One of her works was shortlisted for display at the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford as part of their ‘Redesigning the Medieval Book’ competition and exhibition. She also regularly works with library conservation projects and teaching binding techniques in her studio in Leeds.

If you are interested in participating in this workshop, please express interest when you register for the IMC.

Alternatively, the event is available to non-IMC delegates. To book the event, please go to https://anachronalia.co.uk/product-category/imc2021/. The workshop with a materials kit will cost £30 (vegan) / £35 (leather). The Q&A session alone costs £5.00 and is only available to registered IMC delegates.

Unruly Women

Wednesday 07 July, 20:30-22:00. This event is free of charge.

Unruly Women performed by Daisy Black

It is impossible
That any clerk speak well of women.
Who painted the lion, tell me, who?

By God, if women had written stories
As clerks have in their studies
They would have written more of men’s wickedness
Than all the mark of Adam might redress.

Geoffrey Chaucer, The Wife of Bath’s Prologue

Storyteller and academic Daisy Black presents indecorous assortment of medieval tales from around Europe about women who gain the upper hand – or, occasionally, the upper arse.

These are stories of sex, of disguise and deception, of arse-kissing, and of women finding creative, naughty, and cunning ways to overcome the restrictions placed upon them by their gender and class.

Interlacing medieval fabliaux and romance with bawdy folk songs, this one-woman performance pays homage to literature’s original ‘nasty women’.

Daisy Black is a Sheffield-based medievalist, theatre director, storyteller, and folk dance teacher. She works as a lecturer at the University of Wolverhampton and as one of the BBC / AHRC New Generation Thinkers. Her storytelling weaves medieval narratives together with English folk song. Often moving, occasionally political, frequently feminist, just a little queer, and regularly funny, her stories underline the relevance and vibrancy of medieval narratives for today’s world. She has told stories in some gorgeous and unusual venues, including two cathedrals, at Swansea Waterfront Museum, at academic conferences, and at a folk festival in California.

This event will take place on Facebook Live. The link to the performance will be available on Pathable. A recording of the performance will be visible on Facebook for 48 hours after the initial performance.

European Research Council (ERC) grants: What are they, how to apply?

Thursday 08 July, 13.00-14.00. This event is free of charge and replicated the Monday event.

European Research Council (ERC) Grants: What are they, how to apply? Hosted by Catherine Balleriaux (Scientific Officer, European Research Council Executive Agency).

The European Research Council, set up in 2007, is the first pan-European funding body that supports investigator-driven frontier research across all fields on the sole basis of scientific excellence.

The ERC funding schemes are open to ambitious researchers of any nationality or age who wish to carry out their research in a public or private research organisation located in one of the EU Member States or in associated countries.

There are four core funding schemes:

Starting Grants: for researchers with 2-7 years of experience since completion of PhD, with a scientific track record showing great promise (grants up to €1,5 million for 5 years);

Consolidator Grants: for researchers with over 7 and up to 12 years of experience since completion of PhD, with an excellent mid-career scientific track record (grants up to €2 million for 5 years);

Advanced Grants: for established and scientifically independent researchers who are leaders in their field of research (grants up to €2.5 million for 5 years);

Synergy Grants: for a group of 2 to 4 researchers working together and bringing different skills and resources to tackle ambitious research problems. There is no specific eligibility criteria regarding academic career level for ERC Synergy Grants. One researcher per group can be hosted by an institution outside of the EU or Associated Countries (grants up to €10 million for 6 years).

The session will feature a short presentation about the application and selection process of ERC grants, with a focus on medieval history projects. Speakers will include current and former ERC grantees, who will share their experience and “tips” on how to make a convincing application. Presentations will be followed by a Q&A.

Whether you are thinking of applying or just curious, this session might be a game-changer for your career.

Medieval Records and the National Archives: A Workshop

Thursday 08 July, 14:00-18:00. Price: £5.00

Medieval Records and the National Archives: A Workshop sponsored by The National Archives and directed by Sean Cunningham, Paul Dryburgh & Euan Roger

For all medievalists the ability to locate, read, and understand archival sources is fundamental to their research, whatever their discipline and stage in their career. The National Archives of the United Kingdom (TNA) holds one of the world’s largest and most important collections of medieval records. The vast archive of English royal government informs almost every aspect of medieval life from the royal court to the peasantry, land ownership and tenure, the law, warfare and diplomacy, trade and manufacture, transport, credit and debt, death and memory, material culture, literature, art and music. However, finding, using, and interpreting the rich diversity of material is not always entirely straightforward, and its potential for a wide range of research uses is often unclear. This workshop will offer an introduction to TNA, show you how to begin your research into its collections, and access research support. Images of original documents will be used to illustrate the range of disciplines and topics TNA records can inform and illuminate. Short, themed sessions will also introduce attendees to the ‘Mechanics of Medieval Government’ and ‘Accessing Medieval Justice’.

This workshop is aimed at all medievalists, from masters students through to experienced academics in any discipline, who wish to discover more about the rich archive collections at TNA and how they might use them in their research. There are no pre-requisites for attending the workshop, although a basic knowledge of Latin is recommended.

Prior to the workshop, students will receive links to training videos, ‘About Archives’, ‘Archival Skills’, and ‘Online Resources’. The workshop will include periods in which participants will work independently on practical document activities and palaeography.

Sean Cunningham is Head of the Medieval team at The National Archives and specialises in 15th- and 16th-century records of English royal government. Euan Roger is a Principal Medieval Records Specialist whose research has focussed on church, government, medicine, and law in the late Middle Ages. Paul Dryburgh is a Principal Medieval Records Specialist with interests in government, politics, and warfare in the British Isles in the 13th and 14th centuries.

The workshop can only accommodate a limited number of participants. Please book early to avoid disappointment. All proceeds raised by tickets sales will be donated to the IMC Bursary Fund.

Where Are We Now?: Filmed Performance Extracts and Discussion

Thursday 08 July, 17:00-18:00. This event is free of charge.

Where Are We Now?: Filmed Performance Extracts and Discussion, performed by Leeds Grand Youth Theatre and directed by Lizi Patch

This summer the youngest members of Leeds Grand Youth Theatre will perform Where Are We Now?, a short new play with original songs inspired by the people and events surrounding the Battle of Agincourt in 1415. Where Are We Now? was developed and written by the cast under the guidance of Lizi Patch (Director), Pete Ross (Musical Director), and Dawn Holgate (Choreographer), with costumes designed by Nicole Mistry.

Narrated by Christine De Pizan – a French medieval writer who advocated for women’s equality in the 15th century – Where Are We Now? moves between the battlefield and the homes (and castles!) of some of the people affected by the famous battle and shines a light on the story from both sides. We are delighted to share some filmed extracts of the play and host a Q&A session with the Leeds Grand Youth Theatre artistic director, Lizi Patch, and Leeds Heritage Theatre’s education manager, Stephen Brennan, who will talk about the work of the youth theatre, the development of the show, and the process of bringing this historical topic to life with a cast of 8-11 year olds.

Leeds Grand Youth Theatre (LGYT) is a thriving, vibrant company open to all young people aged between 8 and 17 years based at Leeds Grand Theatre Studio. Sessions are run by LGYT’s Artistic Director Lizi Patch, Choreographer Dawn Holgate, and Musical Director Pete Rosser, plus a range of visiting industry professionals. LGYT is an inclusive group open to all abilities, supported by the Leeds Heritage Theatre’s Learning Team. Members develop theatre skills (acting, improvisation, dance, singing) alongside vital life skills (communication, focus, confidence, empathy, commitment, initiative, creative problem-solving). LGYT is about nurturing the individual and learning the importance of working as an ensemble, while building creative skills and making lasting friendships. LGYT members have progressed to join Leeds Actors in Training (LAIT) – our vocational training programme for ages 18 to 25 years – and even to form their own companies. Since launching in 2012, LGYT has packed out venues in Leeds with eight full-scale musicals and a range of contemporary plays, devised works, and cabaret-style showcases.

Lizi Patch is the Artistic Director of LGYT and LAIT, as well as a playwright, dramaturg, and artist. Recent credits include: Brief Lives (BBC Radio 4, guest writer); Punching the Sky (ACE funded, writer and performer); Down to Zero (ACE funded, writer). She is currently working as a dramaturg with Bobak Champion on his autobiographical play I’m Muslamic, Don’t Panic.

Stephen Brennan is the Education Manager at Leeds Heritage Theatres, overseeing a programme of activities for primary, secondary, and higher education students. Stephen was previously the Theatre and Performance Manager at Leeds University Union. Stephen is also an actor, writer, and runs the Certainty of Chance Theatre company. He has worked with BBC Radio, Script Yorkshire, and Lincoln Theatre Royal amongst others.

Storytelling Circle

Thursday 08 July, 19:30-21:00. This event is free of charge.

Storytelling Circle sponsored by LUU Medieval Society and hosted by James Baillie

Come and join other IMC attendees for a storytelling circle! After a very successful start in 2020 ranging from water-voles to werewolves to The Wanderer, we’re back in 2021 to explore and experience more of the art of oral storytelling, which was a crucial part of how many medieval tales were originally composed and transmitted – and to this day, great fun for an evening’s entertainment. Come to listen to and share riddles, poems, and spoken stories, be they medieval, folkloric, or otherwise.

All are welcome to come and participate – no experience expected or needed – or just come and go as you please and relax and listen as the night draws in around us.

The LUU Medieval Society was formed in 2013 in order to promote a thriving community of medievalists in the University and city of Leeds. To learn more about LUU Medieval Society, visit www.luu.org.uk/medieval.

IMC Virtual Disco

Thursday 08 July, 20:30-22:00. This event is free of charge.

IMC Virtual Disco hosted by Alaric Hall.

Returning after a triumphant debut at vIMC 2020, the virtual disco returns on the penultimate day of the Congress, hosted by IMS Director Alaric Hall.

As last year, South Leeds Radio will be broadcasting the playlist online. IMC delegates can simply tune into the music, enter the virtual space, and then watch the merriment unfold!

South Leeds Radio is a community radio station run by West Yorkshire Media.

A Virtual Excursion: Rievaulx and Fountains Abbeys with a Review of Related Houses in Northern England and Beyond

Friday 09 July, 14.00-17.00. This excursion is free of charge.

A Virtual Excursion: Rievaulx and Fountains Abbeys with a Review of Related Houses in Northern England and Beyond

This excursion will consider two sites that are perennial favourites with IMC delegates – Rievaulx Abbey and Fountains Abbey. Rievaulx was the first Cistercian monastery to be settled in the north of England in March 1132. A daughter house of Clairvaux, many of its first monks were Yorkshiremen who had joined the early Cistercian reform at Clairvaux under its first abbot, St Bernard.

Fountains Abbey is one of the best preserved and most important medieval Cistercian monasteries in Europe. It is also one of the most intensely studied, both historically and archaeologically. Initially founded by Benedictine monks who were expelled from the Benedictine House of St Mary’s Abbey in York, Fountains became the second Cistercian house in the north of England in 1135.

Taking advantage of the virtual format of IMC, this excursion will look at a number of monastic sites that relate closely to Rievaulx and Fountains. These sites are too far from Leeds to be the subject of a normal excursion, but they extend our understanding of these two mother-houses that brought the Cistercian reform to northern England and Scotland. The last decade has seen extensive research on number of sites which are barely known outside their locality though they have many features of international significance and change the way we are starting to look at the great surviving ruins in their carefully landscaped settings.

As well as Rievaulx and Fountains, sites covered will include Warden Abbey in Bedfordshire, the first daughter-house of Rievaulx; her fourth daughter of Revesby in Lincolnshire, where Aelred was the first abbot; and her grand-daughter of Sibton in Suffolk. Louth Park and Kirkstead, early daughters of Fountains in Lincolnshire, her grand-daughter at Sawley in Craven, with its collection of excavated temporary buildings; and Fountains’ last daughter house of Meaux in East Yorkshire will also be considered.

The excursion will be led by Glyn Coppack (Archaeological and Historical Research, Goxhill), Stuart Harrison (Ryedale Archaeological Services, Pickering), and David Bell (Department of Religious Studies, Memorial University of Newfoundland).