Monday, May 16, 2005

A Super Chicken Performance

Had the pleasure of performing at the Ipswich Art Gallery opening on Saturday morning. They had a great children's art exhibition on and had organised quite an array of entertainment and activities to add interest and impact for the kids.

Super Chicken exhibition pamphlet

The theme was 'Super Chicken - a fowl exhibition for children.' Some of Christopher Trotters' wonderful junk sculptures like the 'Red Fan Tailed Rooster' in their promo pamphlet were the most dynamic from my storyteller's point of view.

Of course I had to see what my repertoire could offer in terms of 'chicken' stories and, once I saw the audience, I settled on 'The Little Red Rooster Who Found a Diamond Button.' It turned out highly appropriate in the circumstances as the audience was a fair mix on ages and the story is both dynamic and fun. For the second show I improvised a story with the Christopher Trotter pieces as the characters and the chook house as the setting.

It was fun. I was able to get quite a few kids out the front contributing to the story and introducing each other and basically having a good time.

The performance reminded me of one of the strengths of storytelling and that is the fact that you can easily swap from character to character with a single step or a change of voice or the wave of a hand. It's one reason why I don't perform in costume or mask which can also limit a storyteller's ability to build a good rapport and connection with an audience.

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