Monday, 16 February 2009

Blog about the Bookcase

On friday, a Kurdish refugee told me the story of Kawa the Blacksmith and his defeat of Zahhak.

He was reluctant. Embarrassed. He kept stumbling over details. It's such a common story, I think it seemed odd to him that anyone would want to hear it.

By the end he was grinning. A faint twinge of pride. I had to leave, and he took my wrist and said, "Listen, I have tens of these stories. My father had hundreds. I can tell you another one next time, if you'd like?"

It was one of those moments where it feels like your whole life is going in the direction you want it to.

Saturday, 7 February 2009

Muse and Mania, February 2009

Hear it! or Subscribe!

This is a dark and wretched way to start this thing off afresh. I'm not 100% with the editing, but I've known these two stories have needed forcing together for years now. Enjoy!

In this episode of The Room Behind the Bookcase, Tim Ralphs tells Orpheus' descent into the Underworld and an old "Mad Axe Murderer" tale he heard as a boy scout.

Shout out to the Toaster Repair Crew. And to fine company.

Thursday, 1 January 2009

But why?

What if Persephone knew exactly what she was getting herself into when she ate the pomegranate seeds? And why do the wolves in the forest take 'No' for an answer when the wolf in Grandmother's clothes will not? And who is this dark haired stranger with the beguiling tongue and sparkle in his eye? ~

This is a podcast about the adventurers of becoming and being a performer of an artform that is simultaneously dynamic and traditional. I'm Tim Ralphs, of Sheffield, UK. Here, I'll tell some stories. I'll talk about what I'm up to. I'll try and develop some storytellling theory. It's a place for me to experiment, lament and generally mess around.

What story do you tell to someone who doesn't speak your language? How does a blind and deaf angel find ten righteous men? What does working in a joke shop teach you about being homeless? ~

The dream is to quit my office job and wander the earth making a crust from the tales I tell. That's a long way off, a star to give us a heading rather than a destination for the journey. Along the way I need to collect a great sack of stories. I need to unlock the secrets to making a narrative come alive and captivate. And I need to learn the weird and exciting world that is the British storytelling scene.

Come with me, maybe we'll learn how to change the world or at least have a giggle in the dark place when the dew settles.

Leave feedback! Invite me to come to festivals! Discuss my work! Challenge my theory! Correct my pronunciation of Eurydice! To participate on this podcast or to commission Rabbit and Fischer e-mail me here!