Mary Medlicott, Storyteller and Author - Storyworks

Posts Tagged ‘Otar Chiladze’

Storytelling Starters ~ Dark reflections

Saturday, August 24th, 2013

For me, as surely for others, it was a shocking moment. We were at the Radio 6 Late-Night Prom in the Royal Albert Hall. What was on offer was the characteristic Radio 6 mix of classical and pop music.

One of the performers was Cerys Matthews (who, like me, happens to hail from North Pembs). She came out on stage in trouser suit and fedora and began with some Tudor songs she said she’d dug out of original Tudor music albums. The second song was a lively jig and the words she sang to it were Welsh. I don’t know where those words originated: they sounded like a traditional folk-song, or maybe Cerys had made them up. In any case, they really suited the music and, judging from the applause, the item went down well with the audience. But in the lull before Cerys’ next song, a great rendition of Blueberry Hill, a voice shouted down from the top balcony and what it said was: ‘Your language is dead.’

Why? Why would anyone want to say that? Can anyone feel so challenged by another language, another culture, another people, that he or she would want to see it dead? (more…)

Storytelling Starters ~ Compassion

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

On Thursday morning this week, I went into my study to fetch my copy of Anam Cara. This is a book by the Irish poet and scholar, John O’Donohue, and it’s all about love and compassion. Anam Cara means soul friend in Gaelic. The book talks about how we need to discover this soul friend in ourselves as well as in the friends that we make.

The Celtic Christianity in which Anam Cara is steeped is something I find deeply attractive. Its approach and ideas are very important to me even though I am no longer a practising Christian, more a kind of Christian atheist. On Thursday, feeling especially aware of life’s difficulties and with four close people in our lives having died within the last three weeks, I felt very much in need of the gentle calm and compassion that Anam Cara offers.

Afterwards, starting to think about my Blog for this week, it occurred to me strongly that it’s for the very same reason that I believe that storytelling is utterly vital, especially for children. It gives that same sense of calm, that same sense of compassionate understanding.

This week, I also started reading a quite extraordinary novel. A Man Was Going Down the Road was written by the Georgian writer, Otar Chiladze. (more…)