Monday - February 13, 2017
Issue # 250

Got some news or information you would like to get out to the storytelling community?
Contact Mark Goldman -x602-390-3858x - Mark@Storytellermark.com

A Great Conversation with Liz Warren

Dan Hull had a great idea. Have a conversation with Liz Warren. Liz is the Director of the SMCC Storytelling Institute and has been at the forefront of the storytelling community in the Valley for close to 20 years. 

Last Friday Dan had a "conversation" with Liz about storytelling at Changing Hands Bookstore in Phoenix. It was quite brilliant! hearing from Liz about how she got into storytelling, what was her first story, what she believes is the essence of storytelling...these and more were great topics revealed to the audience.

Often, after a concert, several storytellers take to the mic to answer questions from the audience...but this was different...and good! Hearing from one teller, one whom we have heard tell stories dozens of times, was a real treat, like breathing in the smells of the bakery, all from one perspective.

Congratulations to Dan and Liz for a wonderful evening...Dan, let's hear from some more tellers!

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This Week


SMCC Faculty Concert

Friday, February 17 - 6;30pm - 8:00pm
SMCC Performance Hall

SMCC Storytelling Faculty will be telling some of their favorite stories based on the theme: "Calling All Heroes"

Doug Bland,
Harriet Cole
Travis May
Kyle Mitchell
Marilyn Torres
Sylvia Torrey.

Admission: FREE

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Coming Up


West Side Story Tellers Guild Meeting
Saturday, January 7th ~ 10am - Noon

The West Side Story Tellers monthly guild meeting will be from 10 am to Noon - at St. John's Lutheran Church, at 7205 N. 51st Ave. in Glendale.

Chek out their NEW website! http://westsidestorytellers.weebly.com/

For more information, contact their president, Mark Compton at: WestSideStoryTellers@Yahoo.com.

Tucson Storytelling Concert - Stories at the Rail Yard
Sunday - February 26th 
Doors open at 1:30pm, Show at 2pm 

610 S Park Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719

Stories at the Rail Yard

Stories for Grownups

A storytelling concert for grown ups with

Glenda Bonin, Debra Olson-Tolar & Liz Warren

Join these three professional storytellers for an entertaining afternoon of tales. The Rail Yard is a relatively new venue in Tucson that the tellers are very excited about!
Glenda Bonin has made her living as a full-time storyteller since 1996. She is equally comfortable telling stories with her puppets to 5-year-olds, western history tales on local ranches, and personal reminiscences to memory-care patients. Glenda recently presented a workshop at the National Storytelling Conference. See http://www.storyworksgroup.com/ for more info on Glenda.
Debra Olson-Tolar is a storyteller, actor, and speaker. She was the first storyteller asked to join the J. Paul Getty Museum’s initiative to pair original story with pieces from their permanent art collection. As an actor, Debra has appeared on television, film, and stage, including a performance on Comedy Central’s Key and Peele that went viral. See http://www.DebraOlsonTolar.com/ for more info on Debra.
Liz Warren, a fourth-generation Arizonan, directs the South Mountain Community College Storytelling Institute in Phoenix, Arizona. Her textbook, The Oral Tradition Today: An Introduction to the Art of Storytelling is used at colleges around the nation. Her recorded version of The Story of the Grail received a Parents’ Choice Recommended Award and a Storytelling World Award. She serves as storytelling coach for the Arizona Storytellers Project produced by the Arizona Republic. In July 2014 she received the Oracle Award for Service and Leadership from the National Storytelling Network. In September 2014 she was named to the New Times list of 100 Creatives in Phoenix.  She is on the AZHumanities Council roster as a Road Scholar. 
Doors open at 1:30pm, Show at 2pm 
Suggested donation $8 (proceeds go to the artists)
Entrance to Rail Yard is on 16th St., east of Barrio Brewing.
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Don't Wait for a Story to Find You

Ah, the great question that haunts storytellers, old and new: Where do you find a story? It's not a easy, black and white answer. For newbies, it's daunting to even know where to begin. My Community College students have to tell a Folktale as their first story. I have given them a dozen resources on the Web as to WHERE to find stories. But I also have to help them understand HOW to find a story that suits them. They often need a little coaching help.

One student said he couldn't find a Folktale that resonated with him because he is "not like other people. It takes me longer to think and make decisions." I said, "So you feel DIFFERENT than other people?" "Yes", he said. "Then perhaps you could search for a story about a boy who feels different?" He agreed.

In that light, here is a TIP from August of 2013.

Storytellers are repeatedly asked, “Where do you find your stories?” This question is asked by students, just starting out in the community, and also by listeners who seem to be amazed at discovering there is more to telling than reading aloud from a children’s book.

All too often, I have heard the response, “I don’t find stories, they find me!” This is quite an “artsy” response, and one that I have come to abhor! It does the student absolutely no good, and it only persists to mystify the art form.
Tellers have to work hard to find stories that are a good fit. It takes long hours of searching through titles, topics and motifs. And then more time to read through many stories and many versions of the same tale before finding “just the right fit”. So, where does one start?
As always, you start with you. Who are you? What makes you tick? What do you love? What do you hate? What’s your background, ethnicity, heritage? What are your tenets and beliefs? Etc., etc.
Knowing yourself is the first step to finding stories that are a fit. Do you revel in your heritage? Then stories that deal with that is where you start to look. Do you hate injustice? Then tales of justice is a stepping off place. Are you a romantic? Romance is one of the oldest themes in storytelling and there are hundreds of tales to find.
On the practical side, you then have to use resources that can assist you in finding those kinds of stories. The first place most of us go is Google. Not a bad place to start, and it often leads you right where you need to be.
In addition to Google, there are many sites that deal solely with stories and storytelling. Some very good ones are listed in the Resources section of this website.
Lastly, other tellers are a great reserve of knowledge. Even seasoned tellers ask each other, “Does anyone know a story about…?” So, newbies, don’t feel shy about asking a colleague where to look for what you need.
I will admit, that occasionally, I hear something or remember a piece from my past that triggers a response and I think, “That story was just waiting to be told.” But for the most part, don’t sit back and wait for a story to “find” you. Get out there and start looking for yourself!
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How Will This Story End?
I wonder if...we thought of our lives as a story?

Storyteller Angela Lloyd once told me that when she feels things aren't going well, she sees her situation as a "story". She believes that, as in Joseph Campbell's model, that she will find help or a helper, she will find the knowledge to overcome the difficulty and survive. What a great attitude!

I am not feeling quite as confident as Angela.

I wonder if some of you out there feel like I do, that right now, we are experiencing Donald Davis' "World turned upside down"? But it is not one single protagonist in the story. The protagonist(s) are ALL of us!

OUR world is turned upside down and we feel helpless. Where is the "helper" who will come and advise us? What lesson do we ALL need to learn? What obstacles do we ALL need to overcome? Is there some magic potion that will give us ALL the knowledge and strength to overcome?

How will this story play out? What might OUR "new normal" be, and more importantly...how will we get there!

Liz Warren has told the story of the archer who passed by a barn with multiple bull's eyes and an arrow in the dead center of each! he stopped to find the person who could hit the center so many times. The farmer who owned the barn said, "That's my son, but he didn't hit a bull's eye each time...he shot the arrows first, then painted the circles around the arrows."

Liz noted that "Storytellers work backwards". We figure out what it is that we want to happen, what we want the audience to know of feel, then we work backwards to build the story. Perhaps that is what we need to do, is first truly understand the hoped for OUTCOME, then work backwards to make it happen.

Storytellers...brainstorm with me to answer these questions so we can ALL craft a better story and a better ending! 

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------------------------------------THERE'S A LOT GOING ON EACH MONTH
---------------------------------CALL TO MAKE SURE THE EVENT IS STILL ON

Infuse Open Mic
Second Sunday of each month - Phoenix

Pink Slip Open Mic
Every Monday at  8 pm - PHOENIX

Chatterbox Open Mic
Every Wednesday at  8 pm - PHOENIX

FStorytellers - Female Story Tellers - Tucson
Usually sometime during the first week of the month - but check their website) at  7 pm - TUCSON

Odyssey Storytelling
First Thursday of each month (usually but check calendar) - TUCSON

Third Friday (usually) of each month - PHOENIX

Tucson Tellers of Tales - Storytellers Guild
First Saturday of each month (except July and August) - Tucson

West Side Story Tellers - Storytellers Guild
First Saturday of each month - GLENDALE *NO meetings in July & August

East Valley Tellers of Tales -Storytellers Guild
Second Saturday of each month - SCOTTSDALE - *NO meetings in July & August

Fourth Saturday of each month (usually - check calendar) - *NO meetings in June & July
SMCC Storytelling Institute
A monthly workshop designed to help storytellers build community and deepen repertoire.
See the Calendar

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All Newsletter content ©Mark Goldman
Got some news or information you would like to get out to the storytelling community?

Contact Mark Goldman -x602-390-3858x - Mark@Storytellermark.com


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