Storytelling for Adults

A Body of Words is a series of four self contained storytelling  modules for storytelling modules for intermediate storytellers
Each module will have a specific theme and will use particular types of stories to further focus on that theme.
We will work together to develop your own style & to explore the notion of totally immersive storytelling.
The course is practical and highly process oriented, beginning with a basic warm-up and containing teaching, demonstration, one-to-one tutoring and Q& A. Whilst there will be lots of time for group work, the participants must be prepared to present something alone for the rest of the group.
In between the course weeks, it is expected that the students will try out some of the skills they have learned during the previous week. The entire course will be run in English and it is expected that the participants will be fluent in the language.

 

Aims of the Masterclasses:

The aim of the course is to prepare the storyteller for performance in any situation, be it school, stage, festival or a small, intimate studio space. After the course the storyteller will:
  • Know how to expand, play with, understand and deepen their relationship with a story
  • Understand about the pacing and rhythm of a story
  • Understand how the use of music and song can enhance the telling of a story
  • Know how to prepare her/himself for a performance
  • Be able to use all aspects of the body and voice for delivering a story
  • Be able to freely inhabit the characters in her/his story
  • Be able to read and respond quickly to the audience they are telling for

The course dates are:

Module One 

March 18-22 

The Storytellers Presence  

Tales of Tricksters and Fools
 

From the Ananse in West Africa & the Caribbean to the Hodja in Turkey there are numerous stories that celebrate wit, wisdom and the quiet knowledge of the common man.

The telling of these stories demands the total presence of the teller on stage. You have to be there; in the rhythm, in the characters and in your interaction with the audience. We will use these stories to explore who you are, how you tell and how to develop your particular style of telling.

Module Two 

April 14-18

The Storyteller’s Body 

Shape-Shifter Tales
 

The shape shifter is either born or transformed by some magical force. These stories are sometimes frightening, always fascinating and a total body experience.

The exploration of these stories will focus on your ability to physically inhabit characters, developing a physical language for yourself, using movement & gesture. We will also explore your physical relationship with the space and the audience.

Module Three  

May 20-24

Music, Rhythm and song.

Tales of Heroes & Heroines.

The rhythm and pacing of a story is integral to its telling. From exposition to dialogue and inhabiting the character, the storytellers must know when the story needs them to linger for a while, when to move on, when to up the tempo and when to slow it down. As well as the integral rhythm, there is the rhythm in ring songs clapping games, body rhythms and call and response.  Many of these rhythms we carry with us from childhood and can be used as tools for interaction with the audience and creating an atmosphere of joy.

Module Four 

July 15-19

The Storytellers’ Voice  
Tales of Passion

The voice is a fundamental instrument for communicating your story.  As a storyteller, it can be very easy to focus on the narrative twists and turns of a story, to lose oneself in the physical expression of the characters whilst neglecting the very means that allows you to utter those timeless words “Once Upon a time.” With the voice we can further develop the characters and communicate a truer experience to your audience.

Booking details:
 
Max: 16 people
Cost: £500 per module.
Concessions: £375 per module
 If you would like to sign up for this masterclass, please click on the link below.

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/5T86JHK

What did participants say:

Jan works in a very clear and straight forward way to help us each find our own way of telling the stories. She helps bring out the very best in everybody and has a wonderful way of weaving coaching, theory and practice together in a very useful way.”    -Marianne

No other storyteller embodies and promises to reconnect you with your joy of storytelling, in the way that Jan does. And through it to find one’s voice and power. That was awesome!!!!”    -Gaurie

“It was a transformative and wonderful week of hard work and much joy. Thank you so much Jan.”    -Dvora

I would summarise the approach as spontaneity based on a thoroughly informed and disciplined intuition. How do you teach that? Somehow Jan does, through example and lots of perceptive personal feedback. She draws out whats best.”    -Greg

Jan is as powerful a teacher as she is a storyteller. She has guided me to the heart of storytelling with her acute insight and wisdom. She has helped me to lift the veil of uncertainty that has shrouded my performances in the past, revealing a deeper truth and authenticity in my work”    -Alice