Mary Medlicott, Storyteller and Author - Storyworks

Posts Tagged ‘Two Birds In A Beard’

Storytelling Starters ~ The Magic of Objects: 5

Saturday, October 29th, 2011

The Flexible Fan

Fabulous, fan-u-lous, fascinating …

a piece of material that can make a flexible fan inspires imaginations, sparks imagery and fires story-potential.

How I discovered the magic of the flexible fan

My most flexible fan – the  brown-beige one pictured here – was given to me on one of the storytelling courses that I ran in Redbridge at the end of the 1980s. The courses were mainly for parents and I was asked to run them as a contribution to the borough’s National Oracy Project programme. Consisting of a half-day session per week, each of the courses ran for ten weeks. Almost apologetically at the end of one session, one participant on one of the courses (she also worked as a school dinner-lady) handed me this odd piece of pleated fabric. ‘You never know,’ she said, ‘it might come in useful.’ I asked her where she’d got it. ‘It’s a piece of cut-off old blind,’ she reported.

Around the same time, my storyteller colleague, Karen Tovell, (we ran ten years of monthly workshops together) showed me how to use a much larger flexible fan made from two sheets of fibre-paper in order to tell the lovely Chinese story of the Willow Pattern plate. I remember being entranced as Karen showed me how many different shapes could be created – tree, bridge, door, sun, moon, boat , bird, stars- and how magical they could be in a story.

How to provide yourself with your own flexible fan (more…)