|Kuya Rey in his child like persona.|
A. Know Your Audience. Always know the profile of your audience, their age, background, number of participants, venue and etc. These will help you identify your story for the activity and yoru strategy. But always bring several storybooks so you could easliy adjust if there are changes in the profile of your audience. For example, it is not advisable to tell a long story to pre-schoolers because small children have short attention span.
B. Be creative. You should be quick in assessing your audience during the storytelling session. If your planned strategy doesnt work, then think of other ways to present the story. Storytelling is all about improvisation. Learn to improvise. Decide based on the behavior and reaction of your audience. This is difficult but the only way to learn it is to do frequent storytelling sessions. It is your exposure and experience to different types of audiences that will help you become a versatile storyteller. Every storytelling activity is a unique experience.
C. Connect to your audience. Build connections by finding common ground. You may do this by asking questions relatable to them or you may approach and talk to your audience before the storytelling starts. Make your audience comfortable so that they would open up and participate. Remember that storytelling is a shared experience. It is a conversation between you and your audience. The story is your connection with each other and in the end, your goal is to make that story a shared experience.
D. Start with your own stlye. Start with your own storytelling style. In this way, you will be comfortable in your first storytelling activity. This will help you gain your confidence and as you do it frequently, you could try different styles.
E. Know the story. This means that you should learn the sequence of the story by heart. This will guide you in making the right pauses, emotions and questions. If you forget the words, it would be easier for you to adlib.
Rey Bufi is the founder of the The Storytelling Project. Get in touch with Kuya Rey via firstname.lastname@example.org.