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Presented by StorySwap

When & Where:

Friday & Saturday,
August 8 & 9, 2014
Winchester-Thurston School, North Hills Campus

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All workshops will be held Friday at Winchester-Thurston School, North Hills Campus and cost $35 per attendee per workshop. Workshops are open to adults and teens.

Mike Perry and Stas' Ziolkowski (9:00am-10:45am) "Storytelling 102"
Teacher, teller, comic, clown...Michael Perry is a life-long learner who couldn't decide what to do when he grew up. Mike likes to think that "reality is overrated and telling tales offers the perfect escape." He has been sharing tales on stage in Western PA for over ten years. Stas' Ziolkowski has been a storyteller throughout his 40-year teaching career. Stas' is a recipient of a National Storytelling Network ORACLE award for Outstanding Service and Leadership. Two teachers ready to teach...It's a two-fer... buy one workshop, get two facilitators! What's the story with that! We will investigate the basic structure of stories and do some specific work on family, spiritual, and humorous tales, focusing on the what, who, where, and when!

Megan Hicks (11:00am-12:45pm) "Folding Under Pressure with the Origami Swami"
Storytelling/Origami fusion - The folk process at work in two art forms! Simple stories hold the folding patterns for basic origami models. Participants are able immediately to put the lessons to work in their own particular circumstances. Lecture: 25%. Hands-on: 75%

Charlotte Blake Alston (1:00-2:45pm) "Where Have All the Folktales Gone?"
Is there still a place for traditional tales - or 'new folktales' - in the landscape of personal story and stand-up comedy? Charlotte has begun to describe herself as one of an increasingly rare breed of storyteller who continues to tell traditional tales - by choice. Why has she stayed on that path? What do the seasoned tales offer us? Do they still have relevance in our time? Together, we will take a journey back to the roots of Charlotte's folk and oral traditions, explore the place of story in traditional cultures, play with folktale variations and motifs and consider ideas for creating contemporary retellings of traditional tales. This is a great workshop for beginning and experienced storytellers, librarians and teachers.

Andy Offutt Irwin (3:00-4:45pm) "Building Stories"
So you have a story, or maybe just an idea for a story. How do you uncover key points and then put them together in a way that will create something that will grab and hold your audience's attention? Andy will teach tellers from the novice to the seasoned how to create a solid story from beginning to end and help tellers bring their ideas to life.

Tickets for the workshops can be purchased at the door.


The Master Class is held on Sunday at Winchester-Thurston School, North Hills Campus. The class is $75 and includes lunch. Space is limited.

Charlotte Blake Alston (Full Day Master Class - Sunday, August 10, 2014 10am-5pm) "Up Close and Personal"

Through lecture, demonstration, audio samplers, discussion and participant engagement, Charlotte will share the experiences and influences that led her to the storytelling path. She'll share specific techniques that mark her storytelling style; how and why she chooses the stories that make up her repertoire; how she adapts her repertoire, style and presentation for a wide range of audiences from pre-k to adult, from concert stage to youth detention centers; how she incorporates instruments, song and rhythm; the unique approach to crafting historical stories (libretti) for choral performance or collaborative cross disciplinary performances - including her approach to working with musicians from The Philadelphia Orchestra. The questions she asks herself are questions for us all: how do we define ourselves as storytellers? How do we see our role in our communities? How do we manifest the oral tradition where we are? How do we keep our storytelling alive, fresh and relevant?