Using the 365-room Polish castle as their setting, Zamek Mozna, the organisers of the live action role play event Fairweather Manor want 130 players to step back in time 100 years.
The larp takes place on 5-8 November 2015, but the fiction moves the action back more than 100 years. The story of the larp takes place in June 1914, where 130 people are gathered to celebrate the 60th birthday of the old, crusty Lord Fairweather, who resides at the magnificent Fairweather Manor. Participants play out the roles as members of the large Fairweather family, servants at the estate or visiting artists and local dignitaries who have come for the celebration. At a larp, there is no script, and everything is improvised.
Larp is a hobby enjoyed by many people across the world, but the phenomenon of larp tourism is a rather new one. One of the first - if not the first - big larp tourist projects was the now-famous College of Wizardry, in which participants travelled to Poland to play witches and wizards at a magical school. Now, the group behind College of Wizardry throws open the doors of Fairweather Manor.
"We expect to have participants from 15-20 countries for the event. It's going to be an extraordinary experience." says Dracan Dembinski, who is one of the main organisers of the event - and whose family actually once owned the castle in question. Zamek Moszna used to be in the care of the Dembinski family, and for Dracan, there's something really special about doing the event here.
The larp does not try to be a historical simulation, but rather strives to give participants the feeling of stepping into a film or TV series and making it come alive with themselves as the main characters.
"When people ask me why I larp, the answer is simple. It's the same reason I read books or watch movies - a chance to step into another reality for a time. Sometimes it's to learn something about myself, sometimes it's just to have fun. With Fairweather Manor we hope to give participants a chance to step into a world resembling that of Downton Abbey, Gosford Park and Upstairs/Downstairs." says Claus Raasted, the project coordinator for the event.
The larp is produced by the volunteer organizations Liveform and Rollespilsfabrikken, and is described by the organisers as "...a collaborative experience. Like when children play let's pretend, but with nicer costumes and more complex stories." And if the success of their last project was anything to go by, the 130 spots will be gone fast! Signup opens 1 May, and you can read more on their web page: www.fmlarp.com