Bringing the Magic to Life
There has always been something about the Renaissance that has fascinated me. The social interactions, the class structures, knights and ladies, jousting… It’s captivating in ways that the modern world could never dream of being. As children, we are told stories of princesses, knights slaying dragons, castles and so on. It is all the more seductive to imagine being transported into those realms, and all it takes is a trip to the closest Renaissance Festival.
I have gone to the same Renaissance Festival in Pittsburgh since I was little. This year, I had the opportunity to attend twice – once as the typical faire-goer in modern day garb and the second time (yesterday) I went all out in full costume. It is such a different experience to attend in normal – “Muggle” – clothes versus in full garb, because when you are in costume you become a part of the experience for others and it therefore becomes something completely different for you as a faire-goer. Little girls came up to me and asked me if I was a princess (SO cute) and the shows I attended were much more interactive because of what I was wearing.
Renaissance festivals, much like Harry Potter conferences, allow us to experience another world and immerse ourselves completely in the reality that it presents. It brings that world to life, so to speak, and allows us to escape from our own realities for a day or a weekend. You can be the knight in shining armor or the fair maiden, the fool or the wench, the witch or wizard. It doesn’t matter what the social norms are outside of the festival or the convention because when you are in that world, you can truly relax and experience a world so unlike anything in our own daily lives. It brings the magic to life and allows us to escape into it.