Jessica Finley has been a student of the sword for over twelve years. Her interest began in stage combat, but quickly branched out to German Medieval Swordsmanship. She had been a student of Christian Tobler’s since 2002, and currently is the principal instructor of Great Plains Fechtschule, a chapter of Selohaar Fechtschule, within which she hold a rank of Free Scholar. She also has experience in Judo, and achieved the rank of Nikyu under the tutledge Arden Cowherd of Topeka Judo Club.
Forteza Co-Owner and Chicago Swordplay Guild founder, Gregory Mele has just posted an after-action review of the 2013 Western Martial Arts Workshop. Begun in 1999, WMAW is one of the oldest, if not the oldest, international event of its kind!
As a bonus, here is some footage of the CSG’s own Rob Rutherfoord in a rapier exhibition bout with the Virginia Academy of Fencing’s Bill Grandy:
And a high-intensity, Bowie Knife duel between Forteza’s Keith Jennings and Thayne Alexander:
This past weekend Greg Mele, Jesse Kulla and David Farrel of the Chicago Swordplay Guild were at the International Medievalists Conference in Kalamazoo, Michigan, to present a reconstruction of an early 15th century Judicial Duel in conjunction with members of the living history group La Belle Compagnie. There will be a full write up and video of the event on the Chicago Swordplay Guild website in the days to come, but for now, here are a few teasers:
The duel began with spears, fought to five blows, afterwhich, if no advantage was reached, the combatants would turn to swords.
Having failed to gain an advantage with the spear, the combatants turn to swords. Note that the fighting in closed visors begins to takes its toll on the fighters’ wind…. (And note that the less-winded is the one who is a regular part of FightingFit!)
It’s Theatre with an Edge! (And a point an axe and a dagger!)
Two Pence Theatre provides the Chicago Area with intimate and dynamic experiences of Shakespeare and other artists inspired by the principals of the Renaissance, illuminating what it means to be human. Their new production of Richard II opens on February 28th at the Athenaeum Theatre (2936 N. Southport Ave., Chicago, Illinois 60657). The play opens with a judicial duel that is never fought to its completion. Immediately recognizable to Shakespeare’s audience, the duel and its meaning is blurred to modern audiences.
That’s where Greg Mele, internationally known teacher of Western martial arts, Forteza Martial Arts Director, and Dean of the Chicago Swordplay Guild, and Jesse Kulla, CSG Free Scholar and Forteza martial arts instructor, come in! Join us at the play’s debut, and stay afterword for a glass of bubbly and a live demonstration of armed judicial dueling!