What is Oral Storytelling?
You are most likely to be on this page because you have an
interest in Traditional Oral Storytelling and perhaps you are part of the
growing resurgence in traditional oral storytelling. For people who may not be
fully aware of what traditional oral storytelling is exactly, let’s have a
Oral Storytelling is not poetry, yet it might have rhyme and
rhythm, it is not acting, but it has characters.
A story is not learnt verbatim, it is not a
script, it can be found written down, however it is never read out (ever).
Stories are mythical, fantastical, and
unfamiliar and yet they sound somewhat familiar. They are not a lie and yet
some of it is not, exactly true. It can be truthful and yet some of it could be
a lie. When we are asked as storytellers, ‘Is it true’?
We might reply, ‘You may find some of your
truth in the story’.
never tell the same story exactly the same way, each telling is different. We
react to the audience, picking up cues from the people listening, from the
immediate environment, the sounds, the sights, the smells. These can become a
small part of the story told on that day. It is often said that oral storytellers
tell, ‘eye to eye, mind to mind and heart to heart’. Neuroscience has found
that the parts of the storytellers brain that lights up when telling a story,
these very same part’s also light up in the audience’s brain.
Some people comment, ‘Isn’t Storytelling just for
The answer is simple,
storytelling is for any age. There are now many successful Oral Storytelling
clubs and events for Grown Ups,
sprouting up all over the UK. Some have been in existence for years.
Oral Storytelling is now a growing phenomenon.
If you enjoy listening to a good story, if you like to laugh, dream,
relax, be moved, be taken on a journey of imagination or enjoy the odd ghost
story, then oral storytelling is for you.
As our lives become more consumed by social media, screens
and work, we are slowly becoming more disconnected as people, as families as a
Traditional Oral Storytelling
is a unique way to share magical moments together safely. We are primarily
social beings, anyone who has been to a music concert or festival, knows how
connected we feel when we all sing that same song together, for instance. Oral
Storytelling when experienced live has a similar effect, we feel part of a
bigger something and yet we can also experience the story, individually. Come along
and be a part of the growing phenomena of oral storytelling.
Shane Ibbs 30th April 2018.