Gail has been performing and teaching storytelling for over 35 years. Her degrees include one in education, one in speech & theater, and one in curriculum with an emphasis on talent development, creativity and the arts. She is the author of Tales of Mischievous Martha; Storytelling: A Triad in the Arts; and Kinetic Kaleidoscope: Exploring Movement and Energy in Visual Arts; as well as many articles and stories in anthologies. She is available for performances, workshops, courses, and key notes.
Creatures of our Minds’ Eye. “The Turtle and the Shell,” “The Freedom Bird,” (a story from Asia adapted from Bill Harley and David Holt about freedom of speech), “The Four Wise People” (a story from Africa and India about thinking ahead for consequences), “The Twin Cities” (a story from China about brinkmanship), “How Owls Got Their Feathers” and Juan Bobo and Sisi (stories from Puerto Rico).
“The Talent Show”, “Angie the Different Ant,” Sylvester and the Grumps or How to Dump the Grumps (1986, 1996), “The Owl and the Squirrels,” “The Turtle and Spider.”
“The Bull” and “The Canoe” (Tall Tale Liars’ Festival, 1997 audio)
“True” stories from Garrett County in the mountains of Maryland where I directed the adult Tall Tales Liars’ Contest and the Students’ Tall Tale Festival for years and years at county’s Annual Autumn Glory Festival.
Halloween, Ghosts, and the time for Leprechauns, Tricksters or other cultural topics you choose.
Teachers or students participate in engaging students’ musical intelligence to create sound effects to augment the meanings of literature through storytelling or story reading sessions.
Audiences are guided to create tall tales about their pets and other local events.
Adults, Teachers, or Families with Children are guided to create family stories after hearing Gail tell coal mining stories and stories from a Cynthia Rylant book. This is a very easy, smooth brainstorming session where participants jot down ideas and volunteer to tell about the topics they brainstormed on paper. Lots of chance for sharing, creativity, poetic phrases, and communal praise. Writing stories is an option AFTER the sharing. “Amazing what I came up with” writes one participant. “I never thought I’d have anything to tell.”
Participants are taught specific skills to use in story-sharing or storytelling performances: for example, skills in voice, gesture, focus, postures, beginnings and endings. Writing stories is an alternative, AFTER the sharing.
A talk and workshop about Art and Folktales around the World. Gail discusses 10 visual images of artworks in order to show how stories are embodied in art worldwide. The arts serve as mnemonics to recall stories in many cultures. Participants create a sketch or sculpt from flower design wire their own art piece to embody one of their stories.
© Gail Herman 2017