Friday, June 1, 2012

Getting the odyssey into myself.

When I jumped at the chance to be one of the Storytellers
bringing Homer's odyssey to life, I had not ever even read the
whole odyssey. I knew some of the famous bits of course. But
not the whole story. I set out to find the version we were using
in audio or electronic format as I am totally blind and could not
read the print version. I found several versions. Some in poem
format, some abridged, some with boring readers, some for kids,
and a few that I read right through. The story seemed
interesting and I became more excited. I could do this. I've
been a professional storyteller for over 10 years. I have a good
memory. I love all material. But when I started to learn it, I
could not remember it at all. The beautiful language did not
stay in me. The words seemed lifeless. Beautiful yes they (,
but lifeless too. Why? After some work, we came up with a few
reasons. First, I could not picture the story in my imagination.
I have not seen ancient greece. What were the pallaces like?
What did they wear? Who were the gods? What did they do? How do
you yoke mules to a wagon? I realized then how much I put myself
into the stories I tell. Moving through them myself as the words
fly to my audience. I could not do this. I was trying to cram
words into my head and not put the story into myself and live it
with all of me. So I started reading about the greek gods.
Asking questions of our artistic directors and kind storytelling
friends. What clothes did they wear? How big are mules? What
would the pallaces be built like? I asked and asked until the
pictures and the people became clearer in my mind. It was only
then that the beautiful language flowed easily and came to life
for me. And now as I tell my part of the wonderful story, I am
there and the words come naturally. What a rich tapestry we wove
in our rehearsals last weekend. Each voice different but always
moving the wonderful story forward. Come and experience this
with us. You will be amazed, amused, astounded, astonished. I
raise my mug of tea to brilliant blind homer. Hopefully blind
Kim (smile) will be brilliant too on June 16. Come and f9do

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