The Storytelling Festival and monthly Storytelling Circle, put on by the same organization, are part of an effort to keep the tradition of oral storytelling alive in Newfoundland. The festival itself consists of a bunch of events that took place over the course of a week, and included everything from storytelling workshops to walks around town tracing historic tales. We chose to go to an evening event called Six Minute Saturday.
Six Minute Saturday took place above Rocket Bakery, on the third floor, and featured a variety of performers who each had six minutes for their act. All of the performances involved storytelling, but ranged from ghost stories, to songs, to rhyming recitations. The only rule was that each story had to be told by word of mouth, rather than read loud.
Each performance was long enough to get hooked, but short enough to keep your attention. There was some local talent as well as international storytellers, and if we remember correctly, there were eight storytellers plus the emcee. It was interesting to see all these different approaches to storytelling in quick succession, and really helped us to appreciate the skill of all of the performers.
Oral storytelling seems to be a bit of a dying art, but we're hoping that hipsters catch onto it and revive it!