Monday, February 27, 2006

Multicultural Storytelling (K-12)

Turning kids on to creative expression and the power of the spoken word is what my work is all about. With shrinking resources where every dollar has to count, I can assure you that your students will be getting a quality program at reasonable prices.

I travel extensively as a professional storyteller, author and workshop leader. I am a recipient of the 2005 WV Artist Fellowship Award. I'm on the roster of the Greater Columbus Arts Council's Artists In Schools, Akron's Access program, WV Arts In Education Directory, and Artsbridge.

My programs are both educational & entertaining. In schools I offer dramatic, multicultural storytelling programs, geared toward different grade levels, which emphasize character development, and appreciation of world cultures and literatures. These programs have been hailed by educators across the country. In these sessions I may also provide students with tips on creative expression and speak about my experiences immigrating to America as a child. My programs are interactive, chock full of stories and include a display of hand held musical instruments from around the world. Besides storytelling performances, I also offer workshops and master classes on storytelling, the dynamics of making oral presentations and writing stories:for students - TELL IT! and WRITE IT!; for teachers - Storytelling For The Teacher's Soul


"I can't call it just storytelling, for the word doesn't do it justice. We were gratful to have such enlightening presentations as yours. We welcome you back anytime." Batesville Middle School, IN.

"You certainly made storytelling come alive for the students." Ritchie Elementary School, WV.

"It was an extremely valuable and unique opportunity for our students to meet and experience a storyteller of your caliber." St. Louis Elementary School, IN."The workshop and storytelling session was wonderful." International Student Affairs, College Of Wooster

“The scope and breadth of your stories sparked many conversations and your style was a wonderful modeling of the way of the storyteller.” Joy Fowler, School of Creative & Performing Arts, OH

"Andy Fraenkel is a phenomenal storyteller with an enormous stage presence. He performed his stories from around the world for our first Cultural Shake-Up Festival here at Carnegie Mellon University. The way he blended the stories together makes exploring cultures both fascinating and so much fun. Andy definitely helped to make it a great success, and because of performers like him we are planning to make this Cultural Festival an annual event. Andy Fraenkel would be a great asset to any festival, conference or program for any age level." Heidi Koler, Co-coordinator Cultural Shake-Up Festival

"My class and I thoroughly enjoyed your storytelling. It was quite motivating. Because of your enthusiasm my students enjoy writing stories." Marge Conley, Middle Creek School, WV

"How delightful! The children really enjoyed your stories and instruments, as they discussed it for days after you left." Miss Lyons, Sawyerwood Elementary, OH

"Thank you for introducing the art of storytelling to my students. You provided an especially effective introduction to Coleridge's Ancient Mariner. The students then approached the study of the poem with great enthusiasm." Ethel Hennen, Trinity H.S., PA

“Thank you for bringing such a wonderful tool to us and showing us so skillfully how to use it. “ Shary Ratliff, Children's Hospital, OH.

Will tailor programs to your needs. For grades k-12, colleges, conferences, special events. My main touring area: OH, PA, WV, MD, DC, IN, MD, NJ, NY but will consider traveling elsewhere.

Will send an info packet in the mail upon request. My fee for three storytelling sessions at a school in one day begins at $300 plus travel exp. I live near Wheeling, WV but travel extensively. Do you have special concerns? Let's talk.

Andy Fraenkel RD 1 - NBU 19 Moundsville WV 26041 TEL: 304 845 6840 EMAIL:

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Weather Report

Snow flurries
The branches are brittle
Nothing is moving anywhere
And the tea kettle in the kitchen
Is calling for my attention.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Storytelling Tips

Elements of Good Storytelling
by Multicultural Storyteller
Andy Fraenkel

Finding, Learning and Telling the Story

**Find a story that means something to you.
**Read the story aloud several times. Note the characters and progression of events. Then tell it in your own words.
**Find the elements of the story that are important to you. Stories connect us to our world and to each other.
**Find the conflict, the tension. What do the characters in your story want most? What is preventing them from getting it? How do the characters change by the end of the story?
Who do you identify with? What characters do you expect your audience to identify with?
**Know exactly what you'll say at the beginning and the end of the story.
**Find your personal strengths. Each of us has our own way of telling the story.
**Events and details move the story along. Caution: Too little detail will make the story an unattractive skeleton; too much will make the story bloated and cumbersome.
**To learn our story use visualization - see the story unfold in the mind's eye and describe what you're seeing. The storyteller stands in an ordinary place, but creates a world of wonder for the audience to enter into.
**What does the story tell you about how people behave with one another?

**Avoid: beginning with an apology; overly long introduction; getting sidetracked; fidgeting; **talking down to your audience; ending without a resolution.
Some stories use a repetitive element.
**Posture - stand comfortably. Look out to your audience. Make eye contact. Don't look down on the ground.
**Rhythm and pacing - find the tempo of each character and each section of the story. In general, we have a tendency to speak too quickly. Slow down. Speak clearly. You may alter your voice and/or posture to indicate various characters in the story.
**Punctuate the story with gesture. Find the exact word or phrase where a gesture or movement would strengthen the delivery. Don't make unnecessary, distracting movements with the hands.
**Pause slightly at the end of the story.

**Speak clearly (I cannot stress this enough) - learn to appreciate the texture of the words; enter into the miracle of speaking, of transmitting the images, of communicating. This is your moment. Connect with the inner storyteller.

**In your reading of stories, look at how they begin (for folktales see 398.2 in the library). Stories can begin with a) a mention or description of time, place, and persons b) a question c) a reflection or realization d) a provocative statement

**Breathe deeply. Relax and enjoy telling the story.

Further Reading

The Storytelling Handbook: A Young People's Collection of Unusual Tales and Helpful Hints on How to Tell Them by Anne Pellowski.

How & Why Stories: World Tales Kids Can Tell by Martha Hamilton & Mitch Weiss
Ready To Tell Tales by David Holt and Bill Mooney
Tales As Tools: The Power of Storytelling In The Classroom - National Storytelling Press

National Storytelling Network located in Jonesborough TN - National Storytelling Conference held in July; National Storytelling Festival held in Oct. 1800 525 4514
For more info about my presentations in schools:
Andy Fraenkel
RD 1 - NBU 19
Moundsville WV 26041
TEL: 304 845 6840