Monday, April 25, 2011
Great things about being blind. Storytelling panic?
I was reading an article about storytelling the other day. The author wrote about how much an audience member would miss in the performance if he/she closed his/her eyes. It shocked me. The author said an audience member would miss about 80 percent of the experience. What? I paniced for a moment. Here I was, all of these years, thinking that storytelling was the most accessible art form for people like me who are totally blind. What? Missing 80 percent? Really? Damn damn damn vision anyway. Unfortunately, I forget where that article was and haven't found it again. After I took a few deep breaths, I put things in perspective. Sure, I may miss the facial expressions but I can hear a smile in a voice, The smiling voice has a somewhat higher and brighter tone than the non-smiling voice. The nervous voice wobbles a little more than usual. The breathing of the teller sometimes changes as the story becomes more dramatic or exciting. It can also change with the speaking of different characters. I always listen to the pacing, the intonation, the accent, the changes in voice dynamics. The language that flows from a storyteller always has fascinated me. The rhythm of their speech. The way characters are portrayed. The motion of the story which carries me along. I love to hear the different voices of different tellers. The timbres of the voices as they drift out towards my ears. Forceful strong voices. Calm quiet voices. Voices filled with laughter. Maybe the people who don't close their eyes and keep them closed are actually missing 80 percent of the storytelling experience? I stick to my guns! Storytelling is one of the most accessible art forms for people who are totally blind. THE PANIC IS OVER!