The International
School of Storytelling

Performances and Events

Come and enjoy our performances and events in the Storytelling Hut at Emerson College and elsewhere!
The Ruby Tree
Join Teller and Tradition bearer Shonaleigh for a unique, immersive weekend of storytelling to experience a living, unbroken oral tradition. The Druts’yla tradition has been passed down from Grandmother to Granddaughter by generations of Jewish women. Around 4000 tales are held within the mind and recalled on request, using the lost art of ‘stories within stories’.

Starting at one point in the lattice we the listeners will guide the journey through the interlinked tales, hearing stories possibly left untold for two generations. There will be time for discussion and exploration of both the tradition and the stories.

The group will be able to interact in the way it was originally intended, asking questions directly about the stories and the environment in which they were told; from finding hidden trade routes locked within the tales, to the reasons why a person might forgo a story in order to hear one of greater importance to the community.

Shonaleigh is the only known Drut’syla and the weekend will be a thoroughly unusual revival of a culture almost lost. The telling will start at 7.30pm on Friday evening and finish at noon on Sunday. It will take place within a relaxed atmosphere with plenty of cushions and sofas and tea, coffee and cake provided at regular intervals.

There will only be sixteen places so early booking is advised.

To book go to Teller, Tales and Tradition


The Power of Stories
with Giovanna Conforto

Have you ever wondered how people become storytellers or how to work with story to foster change and transformation in the world?

Join us in the Hut for an evening of story with Giovanna as she interweaves personal and traditional tales following the thread of her life as a storyteller.

Giovanna will share the story she was commissioned to present at the Storytelling and Peace Council in Estonia earlier this year.

In her story she will answer the following questions; How did you become a storyteller? What importance do stories have in your life? How can they affect the world? How can they help foster change and transformation?

Giovanna is a member of The Storytelling and Peace Council: an international gathering of 25 experienced storytellers from over 16 countries dedicated to the growth and development of peace and creativity in a wide variety of life contexts, including multicultural education, social work, business, mediation and social healing. 

She is also founding member of the International Association Stories in Place 

All welcome

7.30pm – 9.00pm Saturday 24 September in the Storytelling Hut

Entry by donation


Forest Row Festival Storytelling Performance Sunday 25th September

“This Sun That Shines” - Shakespeare’s Cymbeline

A storytelling version of William Shakespeare’s play

Devised and performed by Annette Armstrong

Set in Celtic Britain, in the first years AD, this once-upon-a-time tale tells of a princess who defies her father the king and secretly marries the man she loves.  Complete with evil stepmother, a poisoned drink, lost princes, scheming villains, raiding Romans, a wise druid, heroic knights and a heroine, Princess Imogen, who has the courage and wit of an Elisabeth Bennet and Jane Eyre combined.

“Annette Armstrong's storytelling performance of Cymbeline was a highlight of the Shakespeare Festival. Through her meticulously crafted and compellingly told rendition of Shakespeare's play, the audience was transported into the ancient lands of Celtic Britain and the machinations of a royal family feud. Moving seamlessly between the play's themes of innocence, jealousy, cruelty and redemption, Annette held the audience spellbound throughout her 75 minute tour de force performance with just the right balance of stillness and movement, humour and passion. This is a triumph of the art of storytelling.” Adrian Locher, Director of the London Shakespeare Festival 2016

“Annette’s performance reminded me of the ancient crafting of the bard who travelled through villages and towns telling myths and tales that were rooted in folk memory.”

“A masterful telling of Shakespeare's Cymbeline, Annette held us spellbound with this intriguing story; The Bard would have loved it."

“Lucid and engaging, her performance was outstanding!”  

7.30pm – 9.15pm Sunday 25 September in the Storytelling Hut

Entry £5 for adults and young people age 14+

Supported by the International School of Storytelling

Annette Armstrong is a professional storyteller and voice trainer.  Discovering storytelling in 1997, she learned her craft at the International School of Storytelling, Emerson College, and trained in Rudolf Steiner’s speech for storytelling, poetry recitation and drama.  She gives storytelling performances and storytelling and drama workshops throughout the UK.