Tuning the Concert

Gold Arts Award Portfolio

Storytelling at the National Gallery: Magic Carpet Sundays August 3, 2010

Filed under: 1A: extending my arts practice — concerttuning @ 8:16 pm
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On Sunday 1 August I went and observed one of the story telling sessions at the National Gallery.

The event was targeted for 2-5 year olds. The families met in the Education Centre and then went to search for the magic carpet in the Gallery, through which the storyteller built up the anticipation.

After unrolling the carpet together, they started by looking at the painting of Renoir’s Umbrellas to see what they could see. The children came up with things such as the basket, the hula hoop, the umbrella and the tree. They then started to think about how they were connected and the setting the scene. The story-teller asked questions such as was it raining, what was the lady going to put in her basket and how was the girl going to play with her hula hoop? The storyteller let the children lead the ideas with a bit of guidance.

Finally, the storyteller told the tale of Sophie the hat maker being bumped into my Isabella with her hula hoop when it started to rain. Luckily a man offers to share his umbrella with Sophie and they go home together for tea.

I was particularly impressed how the storyteller engaged the children by asking them questions, getting them to mime actions and act out sections of the story. She also explains how you cannot be set on one idea but have to be flexible depending on the responses of the group.

It is has made me think how I could make my storytelling with music more interactrive. Instead of playing the full piece, perhaps I could just start with fragments and discuss what the themes could represent before moving on to put together in a story.

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