Tuning the Concert

Gold Arts Award Portfolio

The journey: Musician turned storyteller November 18, 2010

My artistic challenge was to develop new storytelling skills in the attempt to make my delivery of classical music more accessible.

Unless I know a piece of music very well and can anticipate what is going to happen next, I have a tendency to drift off when listening to music. I belive many new comers to classical music feel the same, as the music just washes over them. However, I find it easier to understand music when it has a narrative or is programmatic. For example, in Peter and the Wolf I like the way I can associate different tunes with different characters. If gives me something to focus on and keeps me engaged.

I wanted to build on this idea by using language to help guide what the listener should focus on. For this I realised I needed to improve my storytelling skills. I wanted gain to gain confidence in telling stories and learn any tricks of the trade. My final goal was to be able to incorporate storytelling with classical music.



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.