This past Saturday I had the pleasure of teaching a class on Japanese tea ceremony at Maneki Neko Con, a first-year anime convention hosted by the Anime Club of Prairie State College. Thank you to all that attended my class and to all that attended the convention as a whole. Without you, there is no convention. The guests in my class were wonderful, attentive and above all very patient with my ramblings and scattered preparations. The class layout was intended to be a lecture on the history of chadō followed by a live demonstration of a small portion of tea ceremony for the class to watch. Unaware of the size of the class, I prepared for a large group. I was pleasantly surprise to have a small group to work with. This allowed me to have all of the students participate in the ceremony itself. Unfortunately we did run out of time and I wasn't able to "serve" everyone tea, but they did get to enjoy sweets and watch a few bowls of tea be made. Though I needed to clean up and prepare for the next class, I made sure to whip up sample cups of matcha to send with the rest of the attendees on their way out. This would not have been possible if it wasn't for the unexpected assistance I received from some of the guests. Thank you so much for helping me clean up and allowing me to focus on accommodating the other students.
I mentioned to the class that I would post some references and supply stores on my website for further research. This information will eventually be put permanently in my links page, but for now I've included some of that information below. And of course, if you have further questions don't hesitate to contact me.
The Book of Tea
by Okakura Kakuzō
(this book is of public domain, available online)
Chadō: The Japanese Way of Tea
by Sōshitsu Sen
The Tea Ceremony
by Sen'ō Tanaka, revised by Sendō Tanaka
Dai Nihon Chadō Gakkai
(Japan Association of the Tea Ceremony)
The Japanese Tea Ceremony
Way of Tea
I spent this past weekend at Reenactorfest. Those not familiar with this event, it is a 3-day convention designed for reenactors of all eras and cultures. There are gobs and gobs of merchants; a reenactor-shopper's dream. There are also many classes to partake in, and I must not forget the Ball on Saturday night. I personally enjoy Reenactorfest because of all the resources you have available to you and that it is solely for reenactors, no fantasy at all.
There was much fun to be had. I got in my fair share of shopping, assisted with the street performing class, and sat in on a Victorian tea. I had missed the first couple of hours of the Ball, got lost in conversations and food. Not a bad thing I think. Though it seems I arrived at the Ball just in time for all of the silliness. I will leave it at that.
Besides the random event review, I felt the urge to do a little show n' tell. Due to the fact that I am typically behind to camera at events, many of my costumes aren't visually documented. I am attempted to change that and at least get a snapshot or two of myself when I'm garb or one of my stage costumes. Here are a couple photos from this weekend.