Category Archives: Blog

The Hare and The Baboon

I am thoroughly enjoying working on further developing this project, a one hour storytelling performance which derives from my book VICIOUS. It is always fun to work alongside the ubiquitous theatre director Dr Bambo Soyinka on this project. My special thanks to the Arts Council of Wales for making the development of this performance piece possible.

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Storytelling in Butetown History and Arts Centre

Traveller’sTales in Butetown History and Arts Centre June 2013

When people travel from place to place, the journey itself is a rich tapestry of stories. At this storytelling event I shared stories of my encounter with Butetown. In my knowing of Butetown, I thought of the story of the hummingbird, a bird that was so overprotective of its territory. 

The event was hosted by Butetown History and Arts Centre in collaboration with the University of Cardiff.

Here are some links:

Butetown History and Arts Centre  – based in the heart of Cardiff Bay, BHAC is a unique, innovative scheme which involves local people in collaboration with professional researchers, artists and media workers.

Events and news page for the School of English, Communication & Philosophy at Cardiff University

In Studio No Thing Out Of Place

No Thing Out of Place

Recording the radio version of No Thing out of Place by Tawfiq Al Hakim was the most exhilarating experience on 30 March 2013. This play depicted a melting pot of voices from different parts of the world; Eritrea, Wales, Serbia, Sudan, Egypt, Iran  and Zimbabwe. The richness of the voices was like the United nations.

Gratitude to National Theatre Wales for enabling John Norton to pull this feat, directing the play from start to finish.

 

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South Africa, University Of Johannesburg Storytelling festival 2013

The Johannesburg storytelling festival ran from 22 February to 23 February 2013. This international event was organised by  University of Johannesburg in collaboration with Gcinamasiko Arts and Heritage Trust. The festival took place at the vibrant Soweto campus, not far from Nelson Mandela’s old home in Vilakazi street. This campus is also the hub of teacher training in South Africa.  

The theme for the festival was LOVE IN YOUR LANGUAGE. The richness of the South African languages, ranging from Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans and many others filled the campus with love. This event was attended by people from all walks of life who came in their hundreds to quench their thirst for stories.   

Then the stage came alive with stories in song and dance, singing from primary school children, storytellers articulating themselves in their preferred languages. I was felt great pride walking up that stage and doing what I do best, sharing stories. As the day progressed, the best was yet to come. Gcina Mhlophe, South Africa’s number one storyteller lit the stage in song and dance and then she immersed herself into an inspiring story of love and resilience. The crowd responded to her as if hypnotised. I stood in awe mesmerised by the highly talented Gcina.

 

Storytelling in Chapter Arts

Storytelling in Cardiff circles

Cardiff is a city abuzz with storytelling activities. Traditional oral storytelling has risen from the graves and stands face to face with modern multiplatform storytelling. A visit to Chapter Arts, in Canton, you find Cath Little and Richard Berry on every first Sunday of the month, like clockwork, organising performances for the Cardiff Storytelling Circle. Here, in this relaxed atmosphere, people share a plethora of stories or just sit and enjoy great performances of folktales either spoken or sung.

In Roath, just at the top of City road, is a coffee House called Milgis. Here one finds a buzzing vibrant atmosphere complimented by delicious, tasty foods and drinks from all around the world. But there is something magical about being in Milgis. It is the great yurt where people sit and relax and are entertained to wonderful storytelling performances organised by Beyond the Border Wales. Here you find the familiar happy and cheerful face of David Ambrose  and Guto Dafis always enthralling the crowds with his melodeon and in his trademark cap.  When I see him perform I always smile thinking of Andy Capp, some cartoon character I used to enjoy as a kid.

I enjoy performing at both these venues.