Top Reasons for Becoming a Renaissance Festival Performer (Photo Gallery)

Survey reveals Ren Faire performers’ interests

    Re-enactment of medieval England has royalty dancing at the KC Renaissance Festival on Sept. 13, 2009, in Bonner Springs, Kan. (Cat Rooney/Epoch Times

    It’s primetime for partaking in a bit of ye days of olde at a Renaissance Festival, otherwise known as a Ren Faire.

    Ren Faires offer a plethora of entertainment and fun including costumed entertainers and fair-goers, musicians, parades, enacted combat, stage and street acts, shopping, artisans of period crafts, food, games, and rides, as shown by this photo gallery.

    Here are 11 reasons, in order of interest, why people got involved in entertaining the public in pre-17th-century Europe enactments and fantasies depicted at Ren Faires, according to a 2010 survey by the Society for Creative Anachronism Inc. (SCA). The SCA is an international history group focused primarily on medieval European cultures.

    Top 11 Reasons for Performing in Ren Faires

    70 percent of those surveyed did so initially due to an interest in history.

    50 percent participated due to martial activities such as armored combat, hard suit fighting, fencing, Rapier, combat archery, equestrian activities, and throwing weapons.

    41 percent joined in because the fairs seem to attract an interesting group of people.

    38 percent were generally interested in enacting medieval arts and sciences.

    38 percent wanted to dress up.

    34 percent were attracted to the romance of knights, ladies, and tournaments.

    33 percent had friends involved, and 18% had family members or spouses involved.

    31 percent were interested in the fun and parties offered by the SCA.

    27 percent wanted to feel like they were back in the olden days of that time period.

    26 percent were looking for friendship or other relationships.

    24 percent wanted to act the persona of a Renaissance or medieval person.

    The survey responders were 55 percent female and 45 percent male, 26 percent were single, a majority were between 35 and 54 years old, 95 percent were white, 41 percent had some college or associate degree or completed trade school, 33 percent had a bachelor’s degree, 15 percent had a master’s degree, and 5 percent had a Ph.D. or other professional degree such as law or medicine.


    • Anne McKinney

      Am I really the first person to comment here and point out that the SCA is a completely different organization than a RenFaire? RenFaires are performances; the SCA is for hands-on participation and education. RenFaires have fantasy and a very loose interpretation of Renaissance history; the SCA stresses historical authenticity for the period from 600-1600.


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