Story selection - storytelling to adults
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Story selection - storytelling to adults

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Folklore: Favorite Storytellers? (36)
Storytelling in a school (34)
Folklore: New Scottish Storytelling Internet Radio (8)

FreddyHeadey 12 May 17 - 10:13 PM
Mr Red 13 May 17 - 06:02 AM
FreddyHeadey 13 May 17 - 06:40 AM
Jim Carroll 13 May 17 - 11:57 AM
Mr Red 14 May 17 - 04:33 AM
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Subject: RE: Story selection - storytelling to adults
From: FreddyHeadey
Date: 12 May 17 - 10:13 PM

Alec Stewart was mentioned earlier.
His stories can be found on Tobar an Dualchais  
paste ... Alec Stewart or Alexander Stewart
Limit by Genre: ... Stories

Gordon Bok's "Peter Kagan and the Wind", 

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Subject: RE: Story selection - storytelling to adults
From: Mr Red
Date: 13 May 17 - 06:02 AM

observations from a listener (at Folk Clubs).
1) as with song - commit to memory, don't read off the page (per se), maybe bullet points are OK. This allows you to embellish with voice(s) and actions. Cadence.
2) make sure there is a solid pay-off, be it humorous or pithy.
3) Mike Rust was good at another wheeze, getting in a well known reference like "and that Richard (s)he met in (Town eg) went by the name of Richard Whittington, I wonder what happened to him? (or that's a story for another time)" - a good closing pay-off. References can be inanimate, Stonehenge eg, but hide their full identity until the pay-off.
4) avoid repeating phrases that have just been said, this is used by story-tellers as thinking time, but it is clunky.

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Subject: RE: Story selection - storytelling to adults
From: FreddyHeadey
Date: 13 May 17 - 06:40 AM

"...repeating phrases..."

Oh I love hearing repeated phrases!
...up the road and round the corner and over the bridge into the market square...

Not every story needs repetition and I suppose it can make the story sound a bit childish but I like the structure and anticipation it can add.

Alex Ultradish does a great 'adult' Goldilocks. It is a while since I heard it but there must be some repeated phrases in that.

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Subject: RE: Story selection - storytelling to adults
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 11:57 AM

I think it's now long unavailable, but Malcolm Taylor at Vaughan Williams Mem. Lib allowed us to put out a collection of recordings of traditional British and Irish Storytellers, including The Stewart's recorded bt MacColl and Seeger, Miners tales from actuality from The Big Hewer and our own recordings from Irish Travellers in London and from West Clare - it was entitled '.... and that's my story'.
We wre always disappointed that it didn't receive wider circulation.
If anybody would like a copy, I'm happy to Dropbox to whoever sends me their e-mail address (but it will have to wait until I return from Liverpool next week-end
Jim Carroll

I was researching one of my songs, The Ranter Parson, when I came across this in a book on sexual morality entitled, 'Love Locked Out', about the itinerant preachers who used to ply their trade in Southern England in the 18th and 19th century.
Years ago there used to be a sect of preachers called 'Ranters' who would preach a Hell-Fire and Brimstone sermons around East Anglia
While their massage was strict, they reserved for themselves a hedonistic style of living that allowed them all the pleasures of the flesh, women - drinking - gambling and the like.
Their message was unusual in the way that, not only did they threaten retribution when the sinners died, but he or she would be punished in kind while they were still living
A man who coveted his neighbour's wealth would find himself penniless, stealing a farmer's livestock would lead to losing all his own... etcetera
The preachers would move into a town, beg hospitality from a resident and and stay until he had worn out his welcome – then he moved on.
One such man was preaching in the area of Romford in Essex, and his sermon on morality was so hot and enthusiastic that he stunned his audience into silence.
A young farm labourer, a bit of a lad who liked his pint and was keen on the women, went home petrified, determined he would mend his ways, which he did for some time, until one warm summer's night he went to bed and found himself dreaming about his neighbour's wife who he fancied wildly –he woke up next morning soaking with sweat, with all the bedclothes scattered around the room.
Out he goes into the yard to wash himself down in the tub, when he notices that a bit of his anatomy was missing – his favourite bit!
He searched the house from top to bottom – no sign, so he dresses and sets off down to where the preacher was lodged and knocks on the door and when the preacher came out, he explained his predicament.
The preacher smiled grimly and said, "I have just the thing for you here", and reaches behind the door and brings out a stout walking stac and proceeds to beat him around the head, telling him that it was the Lord's punishment for his evil thoughts.
Beside himself, he makes his way back home, when he remembers that, at the end of the village there was a 'wise woman', a sort of witch who used to give out advice and cures.
He knocks on her door and tells his story.
She says, "You're luck is in – in a couple of weeks it's midsummer's eve, so if you meet me under the big old oak tree outside of the village I'll see what I can do".
Beside himself, he paces the floor for the next couple of weeks until the time of his assignation arrives – he races off and gets there half hour too early   
When the old woman arrives, she instructs the lad to climb into the very highest branches of the tree, and reach up as far as he can and, she says, "You'll find a rook's nest full of the things you are missing" – feel around and you'll find yours".
Up he goes and finds the nest and, after a bit of fumbling around, he finds what he's looking for.
He slips it into his pocket and begins to climb down, bt, being a bit of an opportunist, he stretches up again, fishes aroung some more, finds the biggest one there and replaces his own with that one.
He then shinneys down to the ground, where the old woman is waiting
"Well" she says, "did you find it?"
"I did ma-am" he says.
"Let's have a look", she orders, so reluctantly, he hands it to her.
"You can go and put that back where yopu found it now" she says, "that's the preachers'

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Subject: RE: Story selection - storytelling to adults
From: Mr Red
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:33 AM

repetition aka anaphora in poetry, aka refrain in song
such catch phrases are powerful.

the repetition that is wearing is where the story-teller has just said something then follows it with "and" and a repeat of the thing. It lacks a flowing delivery.

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