Thursday, January 30, 2014

Kamishibai under the Golden Elm. Williamstown Botanic Gardens 2014

A Swedish bike, a Spanish folk tale and a Japanese Kamishibai made from Australian timber.

A happy storyteller, a beautiful tree and a big, 'Thank you' to Ted Smith who made it happen.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

More workshops: the Turramurra Folk Music Camp. 2014

There was concern that the Turramurra Folk Music Camp might not go ahead as the temperatures in the Victoria soared into the 40s and fires broke out across the state but a cool change arrived in time and Turramurra was given the thumbs up.

On a strip of land set aside as Land for Wildlife, participants camped or made use of the bunk houses. The event is 100% participatory and inclusive of all ages and skill levels. Fiddles, brass, percussion, voices and dancing feet rocked the bush. My contribution was, of course, storytelling but I managed to attend a brilliant ukulele workshop. 

This was my first visit to a Music Camp and I found the atmosphere jaw dropping. The warmth, joy, respect and celebratory mood, was overwhelming. I’ll be returning.

As the Storytelling Australia (Vic) banner is residing in my study, I took the opportunity to display it in the bush and spruik the joy of storytelling. 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Cygnet Festival and the Tasmanian Storytellers 2014

January. Here, there and everywhere.

Continuing on with the idea of rebooting storytelling in Tasmania, I travelled to the Cygnet Festival in the Huon Valley to conduct a master class. We have storytelling groups that connect across the mainland and overseas but somehow Tasmania had dropped out of the loop. Its a long story but in a nutshell, the workshop seems to have provided a focus and enough storytellers gathered to create something substantial. You can read about some of the background behind the Storytelling Revival in Australia in the 70's and how it began with Patricia Scott in Tasmania HERE

The Cygnet Festival was brilliant; the weather superb and the vibe indescribably welcoming. I'm hooked! I caught some of the Welcome Ceremony on my little camera. One of the loveliest.

The storytellers and poets I met during the weekend were inspiring.

 The Tassie Tellers now have a Facebook page: HERE

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Where do stories come from?

Where do stories come from?  For me, every story has a unique journey; some begin in response to an anecdote, a dream, a request; some begin with words or a tune and some begin with pictures.

This mess you see is a story working its way into the world through sketches. Its a linear narrative (can't you tell?) The words haven't made an appearance yet - well that's not entirely true, there's some dialogue, some Arabic and Vietnamese!

I'm travelling into the story realm and charting the experience as I go. By the end of my exploration, I will have a map - a story map.

Every time I make a story, its like I've never done it before and I wonder: does experience count for anything?

But it does count. I've learned that a new story always feels impossible, that it takes patience and a preparedness to fiddle and massage with ideas and words and images for what seems like an eternity. I've learned that a big mess is inevitable at some point and that the story will keep me awake at night.

And the adventure is marvellous!


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