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October 2022 Newsletter

Dear SAS members, October is here! We bring to you our news for the month gone by and for the one to come…

Read about our recent Storylab performance and upcoming performance and workshop by international storyteller, teacher and author David Heathfield — special rates for members and discounts for non-members! Then attend virtual or live performances and workshops by some of our Professional Members like Kiran Shah, Rosemarie Somaiah, Wong Swee Yean and Sheila Wee. Find out about storytelling events around the world like the Mid-Autumn Festival storytelling by Eth-No-Tec, Kamishibai Forum and Maiden Moods storytelling performances. Finally, learn from one of our members, Priti Modylyer, to construct a simple and yet effective DIY reflector that you can use for online storytelling. As oral storytellers engage and interact with our audiences digitally on ZOOM, Crowdcast, Facebook etc, lighting up the face is important. Priti explains how one can enhance the storytelling experience for the digital audience.

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Members of Storylab sizzled the digital screen for the first time with an eclectic mix of stories. We heard tales of strong female characters – one who broke tradition to succeed, one who had the courage to let go of a memory and one who courageously confronted her deceptive lover. We were gripped by stories of female protagonists who stood up to protect those they love. We also heard stories of men and empathized with the emotional pain of being despised and being misunderstood. The 7 tellers – Louisa Ong, Kala Sundaram, Dawn Lau, Juriah Atan, Nandini Nagpal, Ignatius Ng and Shirley Tham took a brave step forward to present their stories in the virtual world!

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‘A Breath of Fresh Air” began on 16 March as the Covid 19 pandemic situation in the UK was becoming alarming. David Heathfield decided to record a series of uplifting short folk tales near his home in Exeter. Many stories were told by people he met from around the world. All of them carry wisdom. The responses from these stories were tremendous. So join David for a quick trip around the world telling on 1st of October 2020 8pm. This event is free and exclusive for SAS members. Register here.

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David Heathfield’s webinar offers you an immersive experience of Live, Creative, Engaging, Intercultural, Online Storytelling. Explore how we can celebrate cultural diversity by retelling stories that have been shared with us by people from different cultures. Explore how we can engage our listeners emotionally and imaginatively through playful and effective use of the webcam, through imaginative use of the interactive chat and through creative response activities adapted to online storytelling and learning. Storytelling humanises the online experience in these challenging times of pandemic and change. Register here.

Information about workshops and performances by our Professional Members:

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Recently, Professional Members of SAS, Kiran Shah and Rosemarie Somaiah, took part in the 3rd Korea International Storytelling Festival (Digital Version), entitled “Calling Water for Peace and Hope.” This festival features storytellers from around the world telling short stories from their culture. Go to the Festival Facebook link here to find more information. You could also watch Kiran Shah’s performance here and Rosemarie Somaiah’s performance here.

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Stories In Art takes place every second and fourth Saturday and Sunday, 2.30–3.15pm and 3.30–4.15pm of the month at the National Gallery. A storyteller tells folktales inspired by different artworks in the Gallery. The dates for October are 10th, 11th, 24th, 25th and an additional session on the 9th to celebrate Children’s Day. Swee Yean will tell Chinese folktales and Vietnamese folktales inspired by the artwork of Chen Wen Hsi and Nguyen Gia Tri respectively. The sessions are free for families with children. Registration is at the Keppel Centre for Art Education on a first-come-first serve basis on the day itself.
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Attend a synchronous E-learning course on Integrating Storytelling Strategies in the Early Childhood. Sheila Wee is conducting the 2nd run of this course on Zoom over four 4-hour sessions in October and November. For more information, click here.

Information about storytelling events happening in other parts of the world:

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In many parts of Asia, people celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival with stories of the Moon’s alluring and guiding light. Though the Festival starts on October 1, celebrations begin in late September. Here are three favorite tales: The “Tale of Chang’er” (or Lady Moon tale of China), Rabbit on the Moon (a Pan-Asian Buddhist tale) and Monkey Moon (a Tale of Lunar grasping foolishness from Tibet) told by storytelling duo, Eth-Noh-Tec. Watch and enjoy here.

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Kamishibai (Japanese: ???, “paper play”) is a form of Japanese street theatre and storytelling. A “Kamishibaiya” (“kamishibai narrator”) travelled to street corners with sets of illustrated boards that they placed in a miniature stage-like device and narrated the story by changing each image. Kamishibai has its earliest origins in Japanese Buddhist temples as early as the eighth century. It became popular in the 1930’s and endures even today where teachers and storytellers tell Kamishibai stories, sparking the imagination of their listeners as they bring the world of stories to them. The World Kamishibai Forum is an initiative to celebrate Kamishibai. It is curated by Tara McGowan, Donna Tamaki, and Walter Ritter and produced by Write Out Loud. It is being held over a span of nine months; Sept 19 2020 to May 29 2021. The sessions are free. You can find out more and register here.

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“Sometimes I think, I need a spare heart to feel all the things I feel.” ? Sanober Khan, A Thousand Flamingos. Women are famous for their moods! They feel so much and they’re not afraid to show it! It’s time to celebrate woman’s moods. Be enthralled with stories of a spectrum of moods and emotions by storytellers from India and South East Asia who will bring you narratives of women that explore the ‘Navarasa’ in human experiences. Maiden Moods is an online storytelling event, for audiences 16yrs+. It is happening on Sunday Nov 1st 2020 and Sunday Nov 8th 2020, Singapore Time (UTC + 8) from 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm. Purchase your tickets here

Keep safe, healthy and curious!

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It is important to light up the face to allow the audience to see facial expressions easily. It can be the difference of light and shadow (pun intended) in an online storytelling session. You can make a reflector using nothing more than a piece of cardboard, some kitchen aluminium foil (or recycled aluminium packagings from Amazon) and glue. Tips for use: a) Place on your lap or on the table in front of you or on the floor to balance and eliminate the shadows that come from overhead lighting. Thus, the shadows under your chin, on your neck and under your eyes are reduced. It is especially useful for anyone wearing a hat. b) Place on one side of you to bounce off the natural light from a window onto your face eliminating shadows. c) A quick trick for helping you position the angle of your reflector, so you know the light is hitting where you want it to is to hold the reflector and tilt it up and down a few times as you look at yourself in your camera. You can see the reflected light move across your face and position the reflector accordingly.
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Get in touch at vicepresident@storytellingsingapore.com if you’d like to share an article for the next SAS newsletter.