Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Gael Cresp reports from the NSW Conference: 'Weaving Stories Together'

‘Weaving Stories Together’

The NSW Storytellers Guild State Conference opened on Friday night with a “Story Slam”. These were the rules:

1. Bring a 5 minute story of any genre to tell and put your name in ‘the hat’ as you arrive.
2. Names are drawn randomly from those submitted for the chance to tell. A minimum of 8 tellers will be selected or more if time permits.
3. Stories are to be told, not read and presented without props or musical instruments.
4. Three judges will be selected from the audience. Each storyteller is given a score on a scale of 1-10 for three different criteria: content, presentation and adherence to the 5 minute timeframe.
5. The winner will receive a prize and the prestige of being the Conference Story Slam Winner!
6. If you don’t want to tell and want to be a listener or if your name isn’t chosen – you can still join in the fun and be able to participate as audience members by laughing, crying, clapping, and cheering!

I wasn’t chosen but the folk who were told terrific tales and got the proceeding off to a great start.

Saturday offered workshops on storytelling for historical palaces / events, a voice workshop, story making, story learning, gaining nourishment from stories, collecting community stories, stories at work, and story telling rising out of your own language and culture.

All before afternoon tea! WHEW!!!

After dinner there was a varied, rich, funny, deep collection of stories told by wonderfully talented members of the NSW Guild. I am told that some informal story swapping continued far, far into the night…

Sunday brought sessions on finding your own story, how to “wow” and sensory exploration to expand imagination as well as my session on coaching for storytellers. Libby Hathorn then presented to the whole group, talking about the importance of poetry to her development of stories and of some of the difficulties she experiences with translating her books to film scripts.

Christine Carlton drew the threads of the conference together and gave us a wonderful rendition of “The Brave Little Parrot” complete with the most fantastic rain storm (created by the audience) I have ever seen.

The final event was a family concert where the NSW tellers again shone then it was into the taxi and back to the airport exhausted but happy and with much new knowledge upon which to ponder.

Gael Cresp is a member of the Storytelling Guild (Vic), an author as well as a professional storyteller telling stories to children and adults and offering workshops.

The Storytelling Garden:

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

JB Rowley: Storytime at Channel 31

It was a cold July night when Claudette D’Cruz and I hurried to Building 12 of the RMIT complex in Swanston Street, Melbourne for the filming of Channel 31’s Story Time. Claudette was there to take photographs and I was there to tell stories to the cameras.

I much prefer a live audience and was apprehensive that my performance style would not suit the medium of television. So why did I agree to do it? Well, this guy, Bret Dalgleish, was so enthusiastic about getting storytellers and storytelling in front of the camera and consequently in front of many people who might not otherwise encounter storytelling that I felt I had a responsibility to assist him get his dream off the ground. Anybody who supports storytelling deserves a storyteller’s support. Bret, also known as Tall Ted, has worked extremely hard getting the Story Time series up and going.

Among the people who have helped Bret is the crew at RMITV and they were already working hard when Claudette and I arrived. The set was up and looking bright and colourful. The cameras were in place. The puppets were chomping at the bit. The first step for me though, was dinner and a glass of red wine in the make-up room. Then Eliza, the make-up magician, went to work on my face before I ventured onto the set where the puppet audience, Tall Ted and all the wonderful technicians were waiting.

The next thing I knew I was telling stories under bright lights to cameras and puppets. I was ill at ease with the unfamiliar routine and not used to working to a tight time schedule. However, the cheeky puppet audience gave me a sense of doing a live performance which helped me settle into the stories and the people at RMITV were extremely pleasant to work with. In the background, Claudette, with unobtrusive finesse, captured some of the action in photographs. All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed my television debut.

JB (June Barnes-Rowley) is a member of the Storytelling Guild (Vic), a Melbourne based author as well as a professional storyteller telling stories to children and adults and offering workshops and seminars.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Matteo at Mornington Penninsula Regional Art Gallery


Storytime with Matteo

A program for 0-5 year olds with Matteo the storyteller

Tuesdays 17 August, 14 September, 12 October, 16 November & 14 December
$4 for children, adults free

Venue: MPRG, bookings essential, phone 5975 4395

Back by popular demand! Join Marvellous Matteo for a half hour session of hand clapping, feet stomping storytelling, music and art. Let your imagination run wild! Afterwards, adventure through the Gallery with Zany Elisa.

Mornington Penninsula Art Gallery:

About Matteo ....

In the style of the Court Jester or Fool, Matteo's artistic career has led him to paint pictures with words, mime, sound effects, improvisation, fun, music and humour. He views his art as an interactive sport, where audiences are encouraged to participate and be part of the story. He works with small children (4yrs) through to adults.

His advantage – he is doing what he loves!

Types of Stories:

  • Old Wonder Tales, such as Grimm's Fairy Tales made humorous
  • Adventure Stories Male or Female heroines
  • Fairy Stories Old and New
  • Animal Tales
  • Scary Stories
  • Thematic Stories eg; Emergency situations or Purim
  • Stories of Spirit and Heart,Love stories
  • Quests, Overcoming obstacles such as Fear, Trolls or Riddles
Matteo is a member of the Storytelling Guild (Vic).
The Storytelling Garden:
Show and

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Words In Winter August 15. There are still places at the table

Once upon a time there was no TV or Internet, poor literacy and no light to read by, a time when stories were swapped around kitchens and fires.

The Ballarat Storytellers

Request the pleasure of your company to

share food and stories

Please join us at the table. Bring a tale to tell (max 10mins) or ears to listen. The Ballarat Storytellers along with the Storytelling Guild (Vic) will nourish your belly with food and your soul with stories.

WHEN: Sunday 15 August

WHERE: Daylesford Neighbourhood Centre 13 Camp Street

COST: Gold coin

TIME: midday-2.00pm

BOOKINGS: Jackie 0412 210 098 or To ensure a seat at the table please book. Places are limited (Vege options BYO)

This event has been organised for Words in Winter by the BST and the Storytelling Guild.

Words in Winter is a celebration of words in all their forms and expressions. For more information on the program August 6 – 15 visit

The BST have been meeting at the Known World Bookshop in 14 Sturt St for over a year. In 2009 the BST joined the Storytelling Guild (Vic).

Thursday, July 8, 2010

WORDS WORDS WORDS. Newport Folk Festival July 2 -4

John B from the Ballarat Storytellers
JJ, James H, Anneliese R
Pamela L and Claudette

For the second year in a row, the Newport Folk Club with the support of the Storytelling Guild (Vic), hosted WORDS.

In a weekend that primarily celebrates music, this is the spoken word event. In the warmth of the Newport Bowls Club, over 10 poets, storytellers and songwriters step up to the mic. A dedicated group of volunteers take to the kitchen and concentrate on serving a delicious lunch. Victoria's own Claudette, once again donned her apron in order to feed and nourish the tellers. I decided it was time she had her very own apron, acknowledging her position as 'Queen' of the kitchen. Claudette also generously donated packets of her beautiful spices as door prizes. For more information of Claudette's creativity visit

The variety of artists who shared their work on the day included Vic's own JJ Shiells from Emerald, still fresh from the show Colours of Hope. Pamela L, Josie M And Jim R also joined in the festivities. Some time travellers stepped from the Tardis, Henry Lawson (James Howard) and Ada Cambridge (Anneliese Rosenmayer). Newport Club's reciter Dave Davies took us to the Darling River (Henry Lawson) and Maryjane W introduced the diners to the power of John Shaw Neilson. This year we catered for 60 on the basis of last year but stopped counting when the room filled to over 80.

Thanks to all who joined us on the day and contributed to a wonderful event .


Thursday, July 1, 2010

'Weaving Stories Together' NSW Conference 23 -25 July

Coaching for Storytellers
Gael Cresp from the Vic Guild will be travelling to the NSW conference and offering coaching for storytellers.

Gael describes the workshop in these words ...

Assisting storytellers by listening and praising - some ways to improve not only the telling of students, co-workers and colleagues but at the same time enhance your own skills.

This workshop is based on the writings of Doug
Lipman. Participants need to be willing to share stories with the group.

Expected outcomes for participants:
The ability to see how to allow the person seeking coaching to direct the experience and so get exactly what he or she wanted from the session.

An appreciation of the role of active listening in enhancing all
storytelling experiences.

An understanding of how to teach by building on the existing strengths of
those who ask for assistance.

See details for the conference on this blog and the link to the NSW Storytelling Guild