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Art of the Storyteller: Ruth Kirkpatrick

The Art of the Storyteller series is all about getting to the heart of storytelling and showcasing the rich variety of skills, interest points and avenues that the artform can take you. The next enticing workshop and performance session is on Fri 9 Dec with Ruth Kirkpatrick and Beverley Bryant bringing their expertise to the fore in the afternoon and impressing with performance in the evening.

We grabbed a few minutes with Ruth Kirkpatrick to find out about her storytelling journey so far.

How long have you been telling stories and where do you perform?

I’ve been professionally telling since 1999 and began telling stories in classrooms and therapeutic groups for children. I perform in a variety of venues, from intimate pub gigs to corporate appearances for large scale audiences.

What would you consider the definition of good storytelling?

Being Authentic

What basic elements do you require for a good story?

I like a story that covers a range of emotions and that has more action than description.

Why did you become a storyteller?

I was a desperate social worker who needed to engage some children. It worked and I’ve never looked back.

Where do you get your stories from?

I tell a lot of stories from the Traveller tradition. Sometimes stories seem to find me, rather than me look for them which is nice.

What advice do you have for aspiring storytellers?

Live life gloriously and then put yourself into the story. That is the best advice I have been given and I think it’s true.

Who is your favourite storyteller?

This changes from moment to moment. I recently saw Amina Blackwood who was here for the Scottish International Storytelling Festival and I really enjoyed her – voice, accent, movement, emotion, humour… she had it all.

What is your favourite story?

One Eye, Two Eyes, Three Eyes from the Brothers Grimm

Who is your favourite folklore/ mythological character and why?

I love Perseus (commanded to fetch Medusa’s head from the King in Greek mythology) – boy did he get things done!

What can people expect from your afternoon workshop and evening performance?

In the afternoon I hope people will reflect and get in touch with themselves in the workshop so they understand how to use and enjoy storytelling more. It is informal so will be enjoyable for all without any pressure on participants – just bring your imagination!  

Then in the evening I hope they will enjoy a range of stories and songs delivered by myself and Beverley to warm the chills away in the beautiful Netherbow Theatre of the Storytelling Centre.

Workshop: Art of the Storyteller is on Fri 9 Dec, 4pm (2hrs)
Evening Performance Art of the Storyteller is on Fri 9 Dec, 7.30pm (2hrs)

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