Thursday, November 6, 2008

Stories from the Stoop

Last night (Wednesday, November 5th), I managed to descend a bit from my post-election high and return to my Storytelling responsibilities.  This included co-running (with fellow-teller Andrea Lovett, and her daughter, writer Laura Lovett) a wonderful performance of new young Storytellers and Writers from the Franklin Park Development Tenants Association, at the Egleston Square Branch Library, in Roxbury.  We titled the performance "Stories from the Stoop", after Andrea's fond memories of her childhood, when she and other kids in her neighborhood would gather on the front steps of their homes and tell tales.

For the program, the younger kids (who Andrea and I have been working with for the last six weeks) presented their Group-Tellings of two very different folk tales.  One was a North American ghost story called "Baby Louise" narrated by Andrea, featuring Shaunice, Nydea, Khyasia, and Destiny.  
The second (narrated by moi) was an  Iranian-Persian folk tale called "No Doubt About It"- featuring a clever boy and his parrot, and two suspicious but gullible townsfolk -  starring Stanley as the Clever Boy, Nikhia as the Supposedly Magical Parrot, and Eric and Lehms as the Easily-Fooled Townsfolk (see picture below).  They were all terrific, and Nikhia's parrot voice did me proud!


In addition to the two Group-Tellings, Laura's young ladies impressed us all with some excellent readings of their brand-new poetry and short stories.  The kids also took turns demonstrating their expressive storytelling skills in our favorite game "Walks of Life".  Each of them used pantomime and facial expressions (no voice or sounds) to imitate an adult practicing their chosen profession, leaving the audience to guess at what job they were portraying.  We had so much fun that one of the Moms got up and got into the act!

Our audience of parents and siblings was warm and supportive, and they laughed at all the right places!  A fun time was had by all, and we are SO thankful to Juanita Pitts of the FPDTA, the staff of the Egleston Square Branch Library, and the parents of all of our young Storytellers! We are very proud of how well all the kids and teens performed last night, and look forward with eager anticipation to their performances at First Night on December 31, 2008.


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