July 2022 Newsletter

Telling the Listener

SAS workshop by Richard Martin 

The amateur tells the words. The professional tells the story. But the artist tells the listener.

In this interactive workshop, storyteller Richard Martin will conduct a practical workshop which focuses on how to craft a narrative and communicate the tale.

During the workshop, you will have the opportunity to look at the paralanguage and work on the skeleton of a folktale provided. You will also get to share your stories with others in a safe and supportive story space.

Date: 1st July 2022 (Friday)

Time: 7pm – 10 pm

Venue: YMCA , 1 Orchard Road, Singapore 238824


SAS members – $55

Non-Members – $70

SAS member + Guest – $110

Non-member + Guest –  $128

To register and find out more about the workshop click here

About Richard Martin 

Richard Martin has been telling stories in theatres, universities and schools throughout Germany and beyond since 1990. He also works in Germany as a teacher and teacher-trainer. The two strands of his professional life have led to several recordings, publications and many workshops for universities and teacher-training organisations within Germany and Italy. Richard has also performed in various European countries, averaging around 35 performances a year. tells stories throughout Europe and as far away as India, Singapore, Hong Kong and America – in theatres, universities, schools, for corporate events or private parties. He usually tells in English, although having lived in Germany since 1976, he is sometimes asked to tell in German.

Explore his website at https://www.tellatale.eu/ for tales, for information about his performances and workshops.

On August 3rd 2022, SAS will celebrate Singapore’s 57th National Day with an online ‘Story Swap’

Come tell or sit back, listen and enjoy. This STORY SWAP is FREE and is open to all SAS members! 

Date: 3rd August 2022 

Time: 7:30 – 9:00 P.M.

Venue: Online on Zoom 

This is an online event that will be held on the ZOOM platform. The zoom details will be shared with all registrants closer to the event date. 

Please register on this link. If you would like to tell a story, you may register as well. Please do give the title synopsis and length of your story. We have time for 5-6 members to tell a story. Stories are 8 minutes and less, unless you request a longer slot. We will have one teller on waitlist.  

If you’re not telling this month, please do come to listen and cheer on the others! We look forward to an evening of stories!

This is a special offer for our SAS members!

Sheila Wee is a professional?storyteller, professional member of SAS and?storytelling?teacher with 24 years’ experience. Because of her work to pioneer the movement to revive the use of?storytelling, she has been described as a Godmother of Singapore?storytelling. 

She co-founded Singapore’s first professional?storytelling?company and is a founding professional member and has been the past president of the?Storytelling?Association (Singapore). As well as running her?storytelling?business?Storywise, Sheila is a founding director of the?Federation of Asian?Storytellers.??

Sheila has offered the members of SAS a special 10% discount while attending her workshop on:

 Introduction to Storytelling I and II. 

(Organised by the Singapore Book Council Academy.)

These are popular workshops, invaluable to anyone who is interested in storytelling and doesn’t know where to start. Both the workshops are highly practical and have garnered consistently high ratings from previous participants.

Workshop Schedule: 

11th June 2022, 9.30 am – 5.45 pm, In Person (SBC Training Room) 

Introduction To Storytelling I

18th June 2022, 9.30 am – 5.45 pm, In Person (SBC Training Room) 

Introduction To Storytelling II
For SAS members to access the 10% discount, please write to vicepresident@storytellingsingapore.comWe will send you the discount code that you can then enter on the registration link. 
To register, get the workshop outline, find out more about the facilitator and the program, please click the registration link.

Events in Singapore & Around the World

This is the third in a series of panel discussions focusing on how to devise a 60+ minute solo show for adults.

This includes the choice of stories and their sequencing, and also the manner in which the overall performance is framed. Clearly it requires more thought than just a catchy title and punchy PR description! 

  • How do start the performance and get into the first story? 
  • Is a costume or a setting going to be a part of your performance? 
  • What is the arc of the show?
  • How does the design of your show communicate that the last story really is the last story, and not just the last because you have run out of time?

The focus is not, primarily, on the way that you tell the stories. It is on the show as a whole. It is about making the entire show a memorable experience for the audience. 

To talk about these and other important questions on this topic, we have a panel discussion with Donna WashingtonKatrice Horsley and Peter Chand  hosted by Roger Jenkins that is sure to be both informative as well as delightful. To find out more about the panelists, you can click the links on their names.

Since SAS is an institutional member of FEAST (Federation of Asian Story Tellers), 5 members of SAS can attend this webinar panel discussion at FEAST member’s rate of SGD$6 (standard rate is SGD$13). Sign up quickly to be the first 5 SAS members to enjoy this rate! 

Date: Monday 11th July 2022

Time: 7:30pm to 9:00 pm (Singapore time)

Where: Online on Zoom

To register and find out more about the event, click here.

FEAST has some interesting events this month like an Expert Coaching Story Swap  and other events. You can click on the link to find out more or to register for these events.  For paid events, if you are one of the first 5 SAS members to sign up you can take advantage of the special Institutional member rate. 

Click here to find out more on the FEAST website.

Exploring Death and Life through Storytelling

In these two workshops, a traditional story will be the seed to spark conversations and personal reflections around each topic. In the first, Grief and Loss, we will explore loss and grief whether referring to an individual, a relationship or a lifestyle. The second workshop, Dancing with Death, focuses on facing our own death, the fear of dissolution and how to leave loved ones behind.

The workshops are held at 9:30 am EDT on 6 and 9 July, respectively. They are part of the Village Storytelling Festival based in Glasgow, Scotland.


Rebecca and Jim are professional storytellers and also draw on their experience as Reiki healers, meditation teachers, sound healers, and death doula (Jim) to create a safe and intimate space to share. Click here to register and find out more.

Chennai Storytelling Festival has requested storytellers to submit a recording of a storytelling to Chennai Storytelling Festival 2023.

Recordings are welcome starting now — 7 months before
CSF 2023 officially begins (on 3 Feb 2023) !
The recordings would be placed in the CSF Online Video Library
A prize would be awarded to the most “touching and moving” recording of a storytelling submitted to CSF 2023 in these next 7 months.

To find out more about this and to understand the process click here to download a document with details. 

If you might like suggestions regarding ways to record and send storytellings, please send an email to the CSF at info@storytellinginstitute.org
  • Picnics invigorate and revitalize.

    Every year, June 18 is observed as International Picnic Day. 

    Recently, at bookstore, Kinokuniya, I saw a selection of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five stories. To appease the child in me, I bought a few and found an apt line in Five Go Off in a Caravan.  I quote George (one of the Famous Five), “I don’t know why, but the meals we have on picnics always taste so much nicer than the one we have indoors.

    Picnicking has long held its place in many cultures. The lure of picnics is huge for people living in countries where grey skies are the norm, and therefore sunshine and warm weather are to be cherished and made the most of.From the time I was a little girl, school holidays were synonymous with picnics. The outdoors beckoned; it didn’t matter what the weather was. Food, stories and games were an essential part of a picnic. Picnics were welcomed any day of the year, rain or shine, and as a kid I never tired of picnics.

     My earliest memories of picnics are with my parents and grandparents. Every year on the 18th day of the Tamil month of Aadi, (usually mid-July) tribute was paid to water, one of nature’s gifts to humankind and the life sustaining properties of water were cherished and celebrated. Families spent the evening by the river Cauvery, eating different rice preparations, sharing folk songs and stories. Usually celebrated near river basins and lakes, this festival is called Aadi Perukku. In 2022 this festival falls on August 3. 

    Lamps were made with rice flour and jaggery and the lamps were then placed on mango leaves and set afloat in the river. The entire event was a picnic on the banks of a river. 

    Storytelling along with food can brighten anyone’s day and bring about a hearty laugh and a gentle chuckle.

    The highlights of picnics I had as a little girl were riddles and riddle stories. 

    This reminds me of a riddle and a riddle story that I share with you. (Attempt to guess and then check your answer at the end in the references.) 

    What is it?
    In spring I look gay,
    Dressed in bright array.
    In summer more clothing I wear.
    But when colder it grows,
    I fling off my clothes,
    And in winter quite naked appear.

    Chessboard Conundrum

    There was once a king in India who loved the game of chess. He loved challenging people from all over his kingdom as well as the neighbouring kingdoms to a game of chess. The king won, always! This made the king quite vain and arrogant. 

    One day when the king was on a hunting expedition, he encountered danger and to his surprise an ascetic came to his rescue and saved his life with his quick thinking and fearlessness. The ascetic seemed like a wise man. 

    The king wished to reward him and hence asked him over for a game of chess. The ascetic had heard of the king’s love for the game and that he had neglected his kingdom and its people and was always engrossed with his chessboard.There was a famine and food hard to come by, and though the royal storehouses were full, he shared nothing with his people. The ascetic hoped he could help people of the land with some rice.Hence, he readily accepted the challenge but under one condition. If he won the game, the king was to put one grain of rice on the first square of the chessboard, two on the second square, four on the third square and so on and so forth. For each of the 64 squares on the chessboard the king had to double the rice he placed on the previous square.
    The king chuckled and thought the ascetic a fool and readily agreed to his request. He lost the game and being a man of his words, he ordered a sack of rice to be brought to the game room.

    From one grain of rice on the first square it grew to 128 grains of rice on the eighth square. By the ninth square, a total of 255 grains of rice were given away.  By the sixteenth square it became impossible to place rice on the chessboard square, and hence a sack containing thirty-two thousand, seven hundred and sixty-eight grains of rice were placed in the room.

    The king was now getting worried and thought to himself, “This doubling adds up to more rice than I expected.” He quickly dismissed his niggling thoughts and felt, “It won’t amount to much, after all the royal storehouses are full.” On the twenty-fourth square, eight sacks containing a total of eight million, three-hundred and eighty-eight thousand, six-hundred and eight grains of rice were placed in the room!

    On the thirtieth square, five hundred and thirty-six million, eight-hundred and seventy thousand, nine-hundred and twelve grains of rice were dispensed!

    Just imagine the number it would have been on the sixty-fourth square! Do you know the answer?

    The king was humbled, and it is said that for the rest of his days he ruled wisely and fairly and never neglected his kingdom and its people. He never forgot his love for chess, though, and even declared it as the national game of his kingdom.

    References: Rice and the chessboard story

    1. Answer: TREE
    2. Answer: On the sixty-fourth square of the chessboard alone, there would be 263 = 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 grains, more than two billion times as many as on the first half of the chessboard. On the entire chessboard there would be 264 – 1 = 18,446,744,073,709, 551, 615 grains of rice weighing about 1,199,000,000,000 metric tons.
    3. Included below is an illustration of Ray Kurzweil‘s second half of the chessboard principle. The letters are abbreviations for the SSI metric prefixes.