Thursday, June 29, 2017

INVITATION: A Fairy Tale Evening

When: Thursday 20th July 6pm

Where: Melbourne Athenaeum Library, Level 1, 188 Collins St, City Loop

What: oral storytelling, music, literature, transmedia & visual arts

Who: suitable for adults/ teens/ tweens (not young children)

Cost: $15, or $10 for members of Storytelling Australia Victoria, the Athenaeum Library and/or the Australian Fairy Tale Society

Theme: Roses - come in costume if you dare!
Light catering (no alcohol, but there is a cafe/bar adjacent to venue)

RSVP: Tuesday 18th July:
Australian Fairy Tale Society : HERE 

Sunday, June 25, 2017


Its mid winter, the sky is grey and the washing won't dry!
But at SAV Central we're celebrating the refresh of our website, thanks to Kate Lawrence.

We, who meet monthly via teleconference (and other times besides) to keep the wheels turning for Storytelling Vic, are motivated by a passion for the art of oral storytelling in all its forms, and the sharing of stories to strengthen and connect communities. We are volunteers!!

So THANK YOU to Kate who has brightened our website and added more bells and whistles.

Also a  HUGE thank you to committee member Louisa John-Krol (president of the Australian Fairy Tale Society) for the work she has done on the history of this organisation. This task has taken Louisa several years of meticulous research and we are grateful.

So the next time you visit Storytelling Australia Victoria, you are in for a surprise.


REMINDER: Newport Folk Festival events: Saturday July 1

Looking forward to seeing many of you at this festival. Already several of our members have signed up as volunteers as well as contributing to events.

Work Shop: Telling Folk Tales
Facilitated by Kate and Dee
TIME: Saturday 11.30 - 1.00
WHERE: The Substation, Upstairs Studio

Open Floor: Stories by the Fire
Come and join Kate and Dee and share a tale (maybe one you learned at the workshop!)
TIME: 6.00 - 8.00
WHERE: Newport Scout Hall
Soup, chai and Cake will be served.

And look whose performing in: What Rhymes with Funnybone?
Alex Kharnam is stepping out from behind the camera and joining Alan and Dave Davies in presenting a bunch of hilarious and possibly silly poems.
TIME: 1.00 - 2.00
WHERE: The Substation, Upstairs Studio

Tickets: HERE

Thank you No Worries Curries for donating the chai for Stories by the Fire. Claudette, what would we do with out you?

Storytelling at the Williamstown Literary Festival

The Williamstown Literary Festival offered Storytelling Vic a session  to promote our organisation and our events. While inviting broad discussion and guests from afar into Hobsons Bay, the Festival has a strong local (western suburbs) focus.

The Literary Festival is situated in the Williamstown Town Hall which is  connected to the library, making a fluid space for 'festivalising'! It was particularly apt that we presented in the Library as we are fortunate to have attracted Hobsons Bay Library as a partner for our monthly gathering, Fabled Nights in Newport, giving us the Newport venue for no cost.

Several of Story Vic's 'westies' stepped up to the stage and did us proud, sharing true tales, fairy tale, and a little recitation. Dee represented our monthly event in the RAW Garden, which she now hosts for Storytelling Vic.

Our little video gives you a taste of the event.

Many thanks to the storytellers who gave of their time and talents to promote Storytelling Australia Victoria. As supporters of the Williamstown Literary Festival, we were well recognised alongside other fine organisations and individuals.

And thank you to Alex Kharnam and Miles who filmed and took stills of  'Before there were Books, there were Storytellers' so we can share something of the event with those of you who couldn't join us on the day.

You can read more about the Williamstown Literary Festival HERE

The Australian Fairy Tale Society Conference: Truth , Reality. Fiction On A European Bed

The fourth annual AFTS Conference was held in the Glen Eira Town Hall as part of the Glen Eira Storytelling Festival.

The day was a mix of academic presentations,  practical advice (grant writing) and activities.
Delegates flew in from as far away as Western and South Australia and drove into town from Ballarat and Castlemaine.

Ideas were traded in words and images, in English, Tamil and Singalese.

Dee (Durgah Devi) Palanisamy set the theme with her keynote, emphasizing the subjective tension in the notion of 'Truth'.

Dee (Durgah Devi) Palanisamy
The question of what is an Australian Fairy Tale was given a strenuous workout and the unresolved relationship, many have to the colonial past was unpacked and referenced many times throughout the day.

Cakes were baked and consumed with gusto; although it felt like an act of vandalism chomping into them.
 The Society has created a perennial award to be presented every year in acknowledgment of the work contributed to the discussion and awareness of Fairy Tale. This year the recipient was Dr Belinda Calderone: former president of the AFTS and one of the founders of the now closed, Monash Fairy Tale Salon.

Activity designed by Jo Henwood, 'A Quilt for the Mattresses'

Presenters: Lorena Carrington, Debra Phillips, Roslyn Quin, Patsy Poppenbeek, Fiona Price, Erin McCuskey, Jo Henwood, Catherine Snell and Phillipa Adgemis.
MC: Jackie Kerin.

Congratulations to the AFTS on a successful and inspiring conference. The next one will be in NSW in 2018.
Keep and eye on the AFTS website for details, become a member, and participate in this national organisation.

Check out the rich offerings from the Glen Eira Storytelling Festival

Friday, June 16, 2017

Can you help Kate find a new venue for Story Wise Women?

Hello Story Enthusiasts,

I’m hoping someone out there might be able to help me. I’m trying to find a new venue for Story Wise Women, a monthly storytelling night. There are no set up requirements, just chairs in rows and a space up front. Of course raked seating and wonderful ambience would be perfect, but stories can be heard no matter where they are. My preference is for a place on the inner north side of town, (or anywhere near a Tulla freeway exit as I come from out of town). Essential is a private space, a room or area that can be closed off. Desirable is a cafe and/or bar attached or nearby. Happy to pay rental per night. Numbers? I reckon 30 - 50 seats would be perfect, to give us bit more room to grow. If you have any ideas, I’d love to hear them.

Thank you
Kate Lawrence
Phone: 0402 080 445

(Good luck with the search Kate. Let us know when you have the new venue and we'll help spread the news. ed.)

Monday, June 12, 2017

Newport Folk Festival: Storytelling 1st July

Workshop: Telling Folk Tales 

Before TV, folks gathered to share stories and sing. Learn how to tell a traditional story with a twinkle in your eye. Facilitated by Kate Lawrence and Durgah Devi Palanisamy (Dee) from Storytelling Australia Vic. These two will have you telling tales before you can say 'Once upon a time..'

WHEN: Saturday, July 1 at 11:30 AM - 1 PM 
WHERE: Newport Substation: 1 Market Street Newport (BIG red brick building next to station)

Later in the evening, you can bring your story to Stories by the Fire and share them by the hearth.

Open Floor: Stories by the Fire

Following your workshop (although this is not a prerequisite), come along to  STORIES BY THE FIRE  Kate and Dee will be there to welcome and to encourage you to share your story. 

Come and listen or put your name on the board and share a tale: all genres of story welcome - 8 minutes or less.

Warm your toes by the fire at this open-hearted event. Soup, cake and chai will be served!

You can purchase a weekend or daily ticket to the Folk Festival and this will get you into STORIES BY THE FIRE  and TELLING FOLK TALES and anything else that takes your fancy. Check out the full Festival program, there is much to enjoy. 

WHEN: Saturday, July 1 at 6:00 AM - 8.00 PM 
WHERE: Newport Scout Hall: opposite The Substation in Market Street.

Ticket info: HERE  
Festival program and all info HERE

Greetings from Jan 'Yarn' Wositzky

Greetings everyone, from frosty mornings and sunny days here in Castlemaine. Hunkering down for the winter and doing the odd gig in early July, including these two BILARNI gigs if anyone is around Baynton (central Vic, near Mia Mia) and Queenscliff, both gigs hosted by great people from local community organisations.

Cheers, keep warm, Jan.

Acclaimed storytelling theatre. In a land where everything and nothing is black and white, ‘Yarn’ Wositzky tracks the ‘expert’ on Aborigines, the greatest yarn spinner of them all, WE (Bill) Harney (1895-1962).

July 1 – BAYNTON
WHEN Sat. 1 July @ 7.00 for 7.30 start
WHERE Baynton Hall, 51 Darlington Rd, Baynton
(between Kyneton & Heathcote, near Mia Mia)
COST $20 incl. supper
0427 237 144

WHEN Sat. 8 July @ 5pm
WHERE Queenscliff Uniting Church
(Cnr Hesse & Stokes St.)
COST $25 incl. supper (kids 5-15: $5)
ENQUIRE 5258 2854

News from Singapore

StoryFest Singapore 2 - 4 June 'Stories for Change' 2017

From Melbourne to Singapore is approximately 8 hours.  This positions Singapore neatly as a meeting point for storytellers living on opposite sides of the equator.

It was with great excitement, I had the pleasure of participating in the inaugural International StoryFest Singapore 2 - 4 June 'Stories for Change'.

As with all inaugural events, there was enormous good will and energy and a sense that we were contributing to a new and significant Festival.

The creative producer, Kamini Ramachandran is familiar to many Australian storytellers who frequent the Sydney International Storytelling Conference and the more distant, Beyond the Border Festival and Festival at the Edge (Wales).

This inaugural edition of StoryFest celebrated both the artistic practice of storytelling and applied storytelling and there was a rich mix of events to choose from.
Xanthe Greshem-Knight with 'The Shahnameh'
International guests premiered: Xanthe Gresham-Knight, Steve Killick and myself, Jackie Kerin and between us we presented three workshops, two children's shows, a collaborative set of tales and a solo show.
Steve Killick, Jackie Kerin, Kamini Ramachandran following 'Journey through Asia'
However the overseas guests were the tip of the iceberg: Playback Theatre conducted a session and some of Singapore's key storytelling organisations were showcased: Storytelling Association (Singapore), Singapore Monologue Slam, Story Slam SG and Telling Stories Live.

A highlight among highlights for me was A Tapestry of Tales, an evening celebrating emerging young storytellers who had come through the Young Storytellers Mentorship Project demonstrating the importance of giving future artists the chance to learn the art and craft of oral storytelling.

Having an international event so close to Australia is an exciting initiative bringing the best of world storytelling to our doorstep.

The flights to Singapore are surprisingly cheap, starting at $600 return. Accommodation in the city is pricey, as expected, but there are plenty of economical options outside of the CBD  and linked by train to the sites of Singapore. And of course, many of us are already used to further cutting costs by sharing rooms and transport. And tickets to the events are very reasonably priced.

I highly recommend keeping an eye on StoryFest Singapore. You will no doubt bump into colleagues and friends from your social networks and previous gatherings.

I had a splendid, if not hot and sticky time in Singapore. I was treated with great warmth and respect as a visiting storyteller at StoryFest Singapore. I thank Kamini and the team for their impeccable support and I'm thrilled to see an International event of this calibre so close to our shores. I am aiming to return as a listener in 2018 and you are welcome to join me! 
Visit the StoryFest Singapore website HERE
Follow StoryFest on Facebook HERE 

And other news...

398.2 Festival: 19 November and 25 November 2017

While in Singapore, I had the opportunity to meet  Roger Jenkins who organises the 398.2 Festival. This event takes its name from numbers in the Dewey Decimal System - 398.2 being the shelf where you will find the folk and fairy stories.
Roger Jenkins and storyteller Alice Bianchi-Clark
As the title suggests, the focus for this event is around libraries, families and children. Roger began the Festival in 2015 and its proving very popular. The heart of the celebrations is a central space with rotating storytellers delivering 15 minute family friendly sessions from 11.00am - 8.00pm. There are break out rooms which offer things like: story and craft activities, a preschool space and Other Language Storytelling (stories are told in different languages every 15 minutes).

As well as 398.2 Roger and Singaporean storyteller Sheila Wee, are working to create A Federation of Asian storytellers (FEAST). Inspired by FEST (Federation for European Story Telling). The vision is to connect storytellers across Asia via a virtual organisation. This is in contrast to FEST which seeks to connect organisations rather than individuals. Asian countries would include: Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, India, Taiwan, China ...

Roger also runs a monthly storytelling gathering called The Story Line where folks of all experience gather to share stories and practice the craft.

Visit 398.2 Festival HERE
Facebook HERE 

So there you have it ... Storytelling friends and colleagues, you were in my thoughts and I hope you find this brief summary of my trip helpful and perhaps I have persuaded you to think about a trip to StoryFest Singapore in 2018. Keep an eye on the program for announcements as they appear.

And before signing off, I'd like to acknowledge 'Fabled Nights in Newport' as the place where I practised my stories for Singapore and the support of Vic storytellers Alex Kharnam who advised and assisted on light and portable set and props and video footage, and Durgah Devi Palanisamy for her help with pronunciation.

Jackie Kerin