What is storytelling?
Stories are all around us – in newspapers, novels, on TV and the Web. They are part of the way in which we understand our environment and experience and come to terms with them. True storytelling happens when the story is told person to person, live, without print or technology.
Storytelling is a unique human skill shared between people and ordinary conversation is full of anecdotes and real life stories. It is one of our oldest artforms. It brings words and the world to life together, stimulates the imagination, and builds a sense of community between tellers and listeners.
Many older stories are originally traditional folktales. They represent the richness of oral patterns of shaping and telling and are the product of a community experience as well as the art of individual storytellers. But historical stories, legends and contemporary stories can equally be the subject of the storyteller's art, and they too embody a strong element of community or collective experience.
"The story is told eye to eye, mind to mind, and heart to heart."
Scottish Traveller Proverb
The emphasis in traditional storytelling is as much on the telling as the story. Stories are recreated by the teller at each telling and passed on through generations.
People of different ages, backgrounds, and cultures can communicate through storytelling. Storytelling is also a valuable tool in education, language development, therapy, and in building racial equality and religious respect.
Visit our Outreach page to find out more about storytelling projects all over Scotland.