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A-B-C of Storytelling for Children {Part 2: F – J}

By | ABC of Storytelling for Children, Golpo - Storytelling for Children, Storyteller's Diary, Storytelling Workshop | No Comments

When I was a little child, every night I tormented my parents for 2 songs and 2 stories. My grandmother wasn’t spared either. Since there weren’t such gorgeous picture books as we have today, most stories were shared orally. Even then there were some stories that struck deeper than the others. And perhaps I asked for them more often than not.

Stories from my own childhood were largely forgotten until the time I decided to rewind. As I retraced the steps gathering stories that were orally told me, I regretted my inability to read in Bangla. So I had to settle for English translations of Thakumaar Jhuli and Pagla Dashu in an attempt to reclaim my childhood. But reading a text in English and recalling a story told orally in Bangla doesn’t evoke the same fuzzy feeling as re-reading an old copy of Agathie Christie. What it does however is recreate a sepia-toned memory that comes in flashes. Read More

Kalpana Rao: The Unbreakable Woman

By | Stories Women Tell, YSB Stories | 4 Comments

“They said it on my face, Tumhare Jaise Bahut Si Aurate Aayi Aur Gayi! We don’t trust and believe in women.”

“Even women have turned to me and said, “Yeh passion koi cheez nahin hain. Dhanda nahin chalta hai toh bandh kar do!”

“Dark stories are like war stories.”

“Most men who I have shared my story with have said they would have closed down.”

There is something magnetic about women’s stories; especially when a woman decides to tell her story with extreme honesty. Storytelling I believe involves a certain practice in the art of nakedness. For a storyteller to really connect with her audience one really has to lay bare her emotions and feelings, especially when it is a ‘dark story’. Be brutal about one’s weaknesses and feel the chill of vulnerability while telling the story. Somewhere, somehow I feel that women are far courageous when it comes to sharing their personal stories. In this case, here is a story of a remarkable woman, an entrepreneur and a gutsy mother who opened her heart, her emotions and thoughts with an absolute stranger by sharing some amazing stories!

Kalpana Rao is the Founder & CEO of Pari’s Haute Couture & Pari’s M2B a speciality Indian and maternity wear brand. As someone who I have only just recently connected with, I was amazed with Kalpana’s willingness to share her story. We spent around 3 hours talking to each other over a muted Google Hangout call, talking and storytelling over a telephone because the network was poor. We kept the Hangout window open because we wanted to see each other. As one who told the story, and the other who heard it over.

I call Kalpana Rao the Unbreakable Woman…read her story to know more.

Kalpana RaoThe Unbreakable Woman (2) Read More