the art of storytelling.

What is storytelling all about?

What's my storytelling philosophy?

I believe that we all tell stories in our day to day life. Some of us tell our stories in a matter of fact sort of way and are not concerned about how our listener responds to our story.

Some of us are very concerned to make sure that our stories achieve a specific result.

Some times it might even be a matter of life and death to get our story right, to make sure our story is heard clearly and with the right degree of urgency.

This is not usually the case with a performance storyteller. However, we are usually concerned with outcomes. We want our stories to be heard, to be listened to, to be appreciated and enjoyed.

I believe that, as a performance artist earning my living by telling stories, I should always do my best to:

select a story or stories appropriate to the age group of the audience
tell the story in a way that the audience will enjoy
chose stories that have a message or philosophy that I am comfortable with
respect copy right and intellectual and cultural property rights of other artists and story owners
acknowledge the creator or creating culture of the story where possible.
do my best not to offend, hurt or be oppressive with the selection and telling of stories.

Performing at Rosalie Kindergarten.
On the 'phone' at Rosalie Kindergarten performance 2002 - image Seva Souris
Storytelling is always a two way process. There is little point in my telling a story without an audience. If I do tell to an audience it would be totally inappropriate not to take notice of what the audience is enjoying and not adjust my telling appropriately.

I usually look for ways to encourage audience participation in my storytelling shows believing that this is much more empowering than an audience simply consuming a story. With young audiences it is quite easy to encourage them to join in in different ways. This might mean offering them the opportunity to say what happens next in the story and then taking their lead and adding to it. This way we all benefit. I get a fresh new story to play with and so do they.

Likewise if I can possibly offer an audience an opportunity to grow, stretch, learn or be more creative by engaging with a story than I will.

Performing with students at Weipa.

Performing with students at Weipa.

I like to present a variety of stories - to enable audiences to realise the scope of stories and storytelling. I think it is important for students to appreciate that stories are told all around the world and represent a treasure trove of culture and fun.

Likewise, I enjoy presenting some of the local Australian storytelling traditions like the 'yarn' and the 'tall story' and to tell stories that explore and celebrate Australian settings and characters.

Daryll Bellingham

23/9/2002 ©

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Daryll Bellingham, Storyteller
P.O. Box 5300, West End, Q4101, 
Brisbane, Australia
Tel. 61 (0)7 3846 3135
Mob. 0417 478408
All contents copyright © 2001, Daryll Bellingham. All rights reserved.
Revised: 23rd September,2002
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