Yesterday, looking for new stories, I was browsing in Ralston’s Russian Fairy Tales and came across a story about the rivalry between the prophet Elijah [venerated under the name of Ilya in Russia] and Saint Nicholas. I learnt from Ralston’s own notes that Elijah had responsibility for what came down from the skies: thunder, lightning, hail, weather in general – indeed, in Old Novgorod there were two … Continue reading How stories grow…
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?
The theme was The Devil in the Detail, so I thought I would tell the Grimm story Bärenhäuter (Bearskin), but I also wanted to make it mine. It seemed to me that having to stay dirty for seven years would be more of a challenge for a man who liked to be neat and clean, so the ordinary soldier became an officer, who put on his last dash of … Continue reading How do I make it mine?
People will know the story about the man who sees Death in the marketplace, and sees Death looking at him in a meaningful way. Thinking to avoid Death, the man flees, takes horse, rides furiously to a distant city – the distance and the city vary in different versions – where, the day after his arrival, the man again encounters Death. Since it is, as … Continue reading Where does that story come from?
So – is it poverty of imagination? Or the ability to see the fairytale world in reality? Sleeping Beauty, too, has a real-life, semi-overgrown castle as her model in Ubbelohde’s world. But then the Grimm stories DO take place in sleepy old Germany… and the interiors in Schmidhammer are just as real… Continue reading Rapunzel’s Tower – not IRL!
Lustschlößchen in Amönau (Hesse, Germany) – template for Rapunzel tower – this, in some ways, is what storytellers do: when they describe some fantastic scene or other they usually have something real in their head. Or do you disagree? Continue reading Rapunzelturm
which is a Frog-King in German and Slav languages… Ubbelohde also chooses real buildings as the models for his fairytale settings. Continue reading Ubbelohde’s Frog Prince