TAKE A BIG BOW, BENGALURU!
If the inaugural Storytellers’ Conference in Singapore 2018 was a great first course for FEAST, then Bengaluru succeeded in serving up something even tastier and more fulfilling!
136 participants (a 30% increase over 2018) enjoyed two days of content-rich workshops, two excellent keynotes (by Sue Hollingsworth and Fran Stallings) some wonderful performances (both as part of the Conference and the BeSt Festival) while re-connecting with old friends and forging many new friendships. There were 88 participants from all over India, plus attendees from Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Italy, Oman, Scotland, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, UAE, and USA.
There was a buzz about Bengaluru, from the afternoon of the 21st, as people began checking in at the Chancery Hotel, which was also our conference venue. The lobby was alive with the raucous joy of reunions and the pleasure of welcoming new members to the FEAST family. Indeed, with so many participants staying at the hotel, breakfast and dinner times were jolly affairs with plenty of bonding over bowls of cereal and networking over naan!
By 5.30pm many hands were pitching in to help set up the Welcome Dinner, arranging table flower decorations and erecting the blank mandala which everyone subsequently took a turn to fill with colour during the Conference, with Ariyo Zidni from Jakarta, as host of FEAST 2020, filling in the final piece to close the Conference. Over dinner, any ice dissolved, as tables played with their own sets of Story Dice, creating their own spontaneous stories to everyone’s mutual delight.
The Chancery’s main function room was a perfect setting for the conference, providing us with a comfortable, intimate setting with excellent acoustics – very much like the story field in Sue Hollingsworth’s keynote, where everyone could feel safe and their suggestions/ideas valued rather than judged.
A highlight of the opening ceremony was the launch of our second anthology of Asian folktales, ROYALS WISE & OTHERWISE. The book looks fabulous – largely due to Uma Krishnaswamy’s beautiful full-page illustrations and the high-quality printing by Sundarsan Graphics (who also print for Tulika Press.) I assure you that the 27 stories inside are every bit as appealing as the cover! Copies are available from our store.
The slideshow captures something of the variety, activity, intimacy of the venue, as well as the fun, food and friendship of the Conference. Links to the drives with all the photos will be sent to all Conference registrants.
More detailed accounts of the 14 workshops, the two Forums and the Story Clinic, will follow.
What I want to highlight is the atmosphere of openness, trust and sharing which was continually in evidence. FEAST is not a hierarchy, and those who had just joined or who were at the start of their story-journey, talked over the (delicious) lunches or teas with tellers with over 20 years experience, one-on-one, without restraint.
Start preparing for FEAST INDONESIA 2020!Roger Jenkins, Director
What is FEAST?
The Federation of Asian Storytellers was set up by a group of experienced storytellers with a vision of promoting the art of storytelling in Asia. It was officially launched in Chennai on 24 August 2018. Through the work of the Federation, we want to create more opportunities for tellers to perform , internationally and inter-culturally, by organising Festivals, performances and teller exchanges.
We also want to share our skills and encourage FEAST's members to learn from one another, as we have learned from each other while performing together in Festivals over more than a decade. We want to celebrate Asian stories and the many ways in which we make these tales connect with our audiences.
Through the work of FEAST we hope to develop new audiences and a new generation of storytellers. We look forward to welcoming you to the FEAST - either as a chef (our tellers!) or as someone hungry to be fed (our audience).
Learn about our Objectives
Why Join FEAST?
Access regular webinars that offer you the chance to learn from experienced tellers as they share ideas on different aspects of storytelling.
The annual conference is a chance to meet fellow tellers, take part in practical workshops and see/hear lots of storytellers in action. The conference will be held in a different Asian city each year.
FEAST was set up by the directors of storytelling festivals in Bangkok, Chennai, Jakarta, Kuching, Seoul and Singapore, so if you tell a story at the Conference . . . you may be talent-spotted!
Professional members, have your own page which can introduce you to people looking for a storyteller outside of your usual contacts.
Enjoy our catalogue of stories told and recorded by our members - and not only in English, too! (The full catalogue will only be accessible to members.) Over time it will become a fascinating and invaluable resource.
Looking for a story? Or a story on a theme? Or for a particular age-group? Or occasion? Submit your storytelling questions to our Forum and tap on the shared wisdom of like-minded people.
Become a Member
If you like to tell Asian stories, come join the FEAST!
Meet other storytellers who not only share your passion but who are willing to share their skills and stories.
Who knows what opportunities you might discover or create? You'll certainly hear a lot of stories which you can think of adapting and adding to your telling repertoire!
We have six kinds of membership: which one suits you?
DO YOU WANT YOUR STORYTELLING TO REACH A WORLDWIDE AUDIENCE ?
WISE AND OTHERWISE
FEAST's second collection of stories will be launched at the Conference in November