I am telling stories all day on February 1st in Newbury: two sessions with Primary School Pupils, one with adults who are free in the afternoon, one with older children in the early evening, and a two-hour show of Russian traditional stories and Stalin anecdotes, called In a State of Terror. I’ll tell you what I did after I’ve done it. The venue sent me an … Continue reading My contribution to National Storytelling Week 2017
STORY CLUBS in Hampshire and Wiltshire Southampton Story Club 1st Thursday in the month 8pm-10pm The Art House, 178 Above Bar, Southampton, SO14 7DW https://www.facebook.com/groups/southamptonstories/?fref=ts Sarum Story Club 2nd Tuesday in the month 8pm-10pm The Wyndham Arms, 27 Estcourt Road, Salisbury, SP1 3AS https://www.facebook.com/groups/sarumstoryclub/?fref=ts Wykeham Tales 2nd Wednesday in the month 8pm-10pm The Hyde Tavern, 57 Hyde Street, Winchester, SO23 7DY https://www.facebook.com/WykehamTales/?fref=ts Heads and Tales … Continue reading Where can you hear stories told?
I first heard this story told by Suzanne Houston at Heads and Tales Story Café in Ringwood three years ago. She had come across it in Doctors on afternoon television, where it provided the framework for a sad story of Afghani refugees. [You can watch it here.] There are various versions on the net, e.g. this one, but when I tell it I’m afraid I emphasise … Continue reading Silver on the Hearth
This is by Victor Vasnetsov, and brings a certain Russian realism to the world of Araby. I haven’t yet read a story from the Arabian Nights which contains a flying carpet. Flying horses, yes, flying carpets, no. I feel I would need to know exactly what kind of carpet it was, and where it was woven, and by whom, before I would trust it. Remember, … Continue reading The Magic Carpet
I’ve already mentioned them on my page on Russian Tales, the knights-errant from Kiev, but here is Viktor Vasnetsov’s painting of the three most famous, whose adventures are told in various byliny: Dobryna Nikitich [the courageous one] is on the left, Alyosha Popovich [the clever one] is on the right, and Ilya of Murom [the honest one] is in the middle. A full-length 1956 film about … Continue reading Bogatyri
Russian Tales have pictures in them that are every bit as bright as the pictures that Ivan Bilibin creates. Indeed, there are few artists whose works fit the tales they illustrate as well as his. These are the pictures I see in my head. These are the pictures I want to get into yours. This picture is the beginning of The Frog Princess. Three princes … Continue reading Skazki
The Tale of Tsar Saltan is a poem by Pushkin and an opera by Rimsky-Korsakov that is too rarely performed [like most of them], but I tell it differently, leaving out some magic bits and making the structure clearer. I also introduce Baba Yaga as joint villainess, which I think is completely appropriate. In this picture, Tsar Saltan [who seems older than I would have … Continue reading Tsar Saltan