Interview – Tom O’Rahilly – Storytelling @ National Leprechaun Museum


We interviewed Tom O’Rahilly about the art of Storytelling ahead of the course on Storytelling in the National Leprechaun Museum, which start on January 20th this year. You can see the results below.

As people don’t congregate around fires and tell stories any more, is Storytelling dying as an art form?

Stories are how we make sense of the world. Unlike some other art forms it is an interactive process, the listener participates in the story so the right setting is key to the performance. The fireside is a natural place for telling stories but it is also needs the right timing, when the dining and dancing have come to an end this is the time for stories and we need to create time and space for it. In the past it was said a night is made of three parts, feasting for the first, story and song for the second and sleep for the third.

Are we losing some of the old stories, now that they are not being passed from generation to generation?

Ireland has a unique heritage in story and storytelling. The landscape of our island is key to many of our stories, as we moved from farm to factory our ties to the land untwined and we slowly let go of the intangible that had naturally developed over the centuries.

What will people get from this course?

Firstly this is about engaging people, stories come alive between listener and teller. Making it relevant and compelling is the first step; this requires a grasp not just of the story but also its meaning and heritage. We aim to give people this skill and an understanding of audiences.

Is story telling a different skill from acting?

Although there are many similarities, there is in fact quite a difference. In storytelling you are among your audience and they are with you. At the least they are living props for your performance and this can progress to including them in the action and they may be even needed to develop the story.

I heard someone say recently that ‘the best stories happen to the best storytellers’. What can a good storyteller add to a story?

Everyone has a storytelling voice and this develops with experience. People who enjoy a good story and want to share it will always add something in the retelling. What is said and how it is told reflects on the teller, what is heard relies on the listener. A good storyteller needs a good ear.

Full details of the courses are below…

Develop the Gift of the Gab at the Home of Storytelling

Telling stories at the National Leprechaun Museum – This new year why not try something different?

Learn to tell a great Irish Story and let the old become new.  Irish people are renowned for their storytelling now is a chance for you to brush up on your natural talent. If you are looking for a distinctive party piece, a chance to hone your speaking skills or the ability to deliver some serous entertainment, join the National Leprechaun Museum for an informative, engaging and fun course.

 Course One:  Legends – Telling stories for an adult audience.

6 week course (6 x 2 hours)  – Tuesdays 7.00pm to 9.00pm – Learn to tell a great Irish legend.

Find out about the story, the people involved and where it features in the cycles of legends.You will learn to understand audiences and how to set the scene for them.  You will be ableto guide them through the tale and keep them hanging until the last word of your story.

Live storytelling showcase. – This course commences Jan 20th 2015 – Price € 120.00
Course Two: Tell Tales – Telling stories to a younger audience

6 week course (6 x 1.5 hours) – Wednesdays 10 am to 11.30 am – Learn to tell 3 Irish fairy tales

Find out about the stories and where they come from.  Develop your skills to engage and enthral young listeners. Find your authentic storytelling voice. Have them hanging on your every word. This morning course is designed for adults who want to develop their skills.

This course commences Jan 21st 2015 – Price € 100.00




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