Christine McMahon

Christine McMahon


Saturday, October 29th - Monday, October 31st, 2016

 STORYTELLER IN RESIDENCE: Christine McMahon is a vibrant Storyteller with an international reputation. She has a love of traditional folktales, particularly those with a link to her Northern roots. Born in Lancashire, living in Yorkshire , her ready wit and warm manner, mixed with a dollop of Northern grit, make her a unique performer who tells tales close to home even when she is far away!

            Not only a performer, she has a unique talent for improvisational Storymaking, guiding audiences of any age to have the confidence to create stories from their own imaginations. 
           She is a member of Shaggy Dog Storytelling Club, recognised as one of the most successful and long running clubs in England.

           Born to a Lancashire father and a Yorkshire mother. Christine has lived her life on both sides of the crags, "where the rocks of Lancashire and Yorkshire frown in close but harmless proximity." She believes that storytelling is the thread that has linked all her work in the last 15 years in drama, psychology, dramatherapy and now, in the Youth Justice System.

            Christine is involved in a wide range of storytelling projects and performance workshops in settings ranging from prisons to schools and nurseries. And she’s interested in developing international links to support storytelling development and stories for use with Restorative Justice.

FIND YOURSELF IN A STORY: This workshop will explore the link between ourselves and the stories we want to tell.  What is it about a story that makes us want to tell it?? Finding the stories and telling them in a way that helps us to connect to an audience is both fun and revealing. Come and explore stories with us, find some new ones to tell or deepen your telling of the ones you know.  Over the weekend Christine will challenge you  to be more authentic, to find the confidence to tell stories in settings you might not have had the courage to yet. In other words come and be yourself as a storyteller.

INSTRUCTION TIME: c. 15 hours instruction. Sessions start Sat. promptly at 10:00, end at 1:00, begin again at 2:00, end at 5:00. That evening: optional stories/music from c. 9:00 - 11:00. On Sun. the same schedule will be followed, but then there will be a dinner in an island restaurant or home from c. 6:30 – 10:00 (at own expense). On Monday instruction time runs from 9:00 - 12:00, & then there will be an optional afternoon storytelling walk from 1:00 - whenever.

Open to all but limited to c. 15: A fun yet heuristic opportunity for aspiring storytellers, practicing storytellers, teachers of all levels, librarians, social workers, politicians, actors, priests, publicans….

COST: €130 for course plus a non-refundable €40 registration fee (limited scholarship available); accommodation (room & full board) varies with place of residence. Self-catering facilities, hostel, B&B, camping. Lunches Sat. & Sun. are served at cost in The Bullig House (Euro 7.00 each) and a special banquet for all held Sunday night will also be extra, price (and location) yet to be determined.

Ferry: Take the ferry for Cape Clear from Baltimore ’s main pier at 10:30 a.m. or 5:00 p.m. on Friday, October 23. We’ll welcome & orient you at the pier. Leave Tuesday morning on 7:15 or 9:00am boat (or on Mon. afternoon at 4:00 if you must be at work early Tues. morning). (Ferry number: 086 3465110)

Please note: Bring hiking boots, torch (flashlight), rain gear. Since The Bullig House (a no-smoking dwelling) will be the main venue for the workshop, please bring slippers for use in the house.

Questions? Contact Chuck Kruger, Glen West, Cape Clear Island, Co. Cork , Ireland , (028) 39157;

Email:; Website:  . Info on the International Storytelling Festival:  ; info on the island:

Accommodation: Free of charge would be to camp on our farm. Next would be Cape Clear Holiday Hostel at +41968. B&B: Eileen Leonard at +39160. Self-catering houses: Mary O'Driscoll, +39153; Margaret O’Driscoll, +39109. If you decide to come to the storytelling workshop, please send a cheque to Chuck Kruger for €40, which covers the registration. (The tuition may be paid during the workshop itself.) Add equivalent of €3 if you are paying in a foreign currency, as bank charges for conversion are high (personal dollar checks also acceptable).



The 2014 group

Daniel Morden

Gerry Clancy, co-director of the Cape Storytelling Festival

The Group again

Here's Nuala Ní Loinsigh, the woman who runs the Irish-speaking part of
the Storytelling Festival itself.

Philip Byrne, participant!

Cliona O'Carroll, a regular (& who told me it was ok to use this fun pic!)

After our Sunday evening meal together!


Daniel Morden


Saturday, October 25 - Monday, October 27, 2014

STORYTELLER IN RESIDENCE: Daniel Morden is one of the UKs leading exponents in the art of storytelling. For 25 years he has delighted audiences all over the world at story telling festivals including those in Vancouver, Oslo and Yukon. In the UK he has been seen at The Hay Festival as well as Beyond The Border, Bath and Cheltenham festivals. In London he has performed at venues from the Barbican and National Theatre to the British Museum. The award-winning, Abergavenny-based storyteller has also worked on TV and radio and published books for both children and adults. His website:

THE CRAFT OF THE STORYTELLER: A workshop for storytellers with some experience. The old stories can still charm, chill and thrill us today. But what to tell to whom? What are the storytelling challenges presented by a trick tale? a myth? a fairy tale? an epic? In this lively, interactive workshop, Daniel will discuss a range of tale types and strategies to help you prepare to tell them. Participants will have the chance to tell and hear a wealth of stories across the weekend, from awful jokes to solemn myths. It is likely that everyone will leave with at least one new story to share with others after the course. Songs will be sung! Games will be played! Friends will be made! a most convivial time will be had, in magical surroundings.


Saturday, October 26 - Monday, October 28, 2013

Daniel Morden

MASTER STORYTELLER IN RESIDENCE: Daniel Morden is one of the UKs leading exponents in the art of storytelling. For 23 years he has delighted audiences all over the world at story telling festivals including those in Vancouver, Oslo and Yukon. In the UK he has been seen at The Hay Festival as well as Beyond The Border, Bath and Cheltenham festivals. In London he has performed at venues from the Barbican and National Theatre to the British Museum. The award-winning, Abergavenny-based storyteller has also worked on TV and radio and published books for both children and adults. His website:


Saturday, October 27 through Monday, October 29, 2012

Diarmuid O'Drisceoil

2012 Workshop

MASTER STORYTELLER IN RESIDENCE: Diarmuid O'Drisceoil, a natural storyteller, tells his stories with dramatic energy, often using elements of stand-up but in his own words “he knows how to twist the knife”. He grew up in a bi-lingual home, speaking English and Gaelic, and listened to the stories of his wide family network for years before discovering that ‘strangers’ enjoyed them also! He draws his stories mainly from the Irish tradition but adapts them to suit his surreal sense of humour. He’s been a great favourite with audiences as MC at the Cape festival for a number of years and featured in the festival in 2007 and will feature again in 2012. Diarmuid is the author of four books, three of which with his brother Donal. The most recent offerings “50 years have flown: A History of Cork Airport” and “Serving a City: The Story of Cork's English Market” have been widely acclaimed.


Kate Corkery


Saturday, October 22 through Monday, October 24, 2011  

October 24, 2011 October 24, 2011

MASTER STORYTELLER IN RESIDENCE: For the second year in a row, Kate Corkery returns to Cape Clear Island for our Storytelling Masterclass weekend. Kate was recently awarded Best Storyteller 2009 by the London Fringe Awards for her “outstanding work in regenerating the Art of Storytelling for today’s society and in particular for her work in London, bringing it to new and excited audiences.” As Storyteller in Residence in The Irish Cultural Centre, Hammersmith, Kate runs “Around the Fire”, a monthly storytelling club, along with weekly classes, teachers’ conferences, children’s Culture Camps, and an Annual Storytelling Festival. Kate travels throughout Europe as special guest at many international festivals. She’s a founding member of “Everyday Magic”, 
Arts in Education Programme, and half of the dynamic Irish/Afro-Caribbean duo “Spud and Yam”, with whom she has produced highly acclaimed CDs and educational resources for schools. Kate is delighted to return to her beloved Cape Clear, where this year she will also be performing in our annual International Storytelling Festival in September.

“CELTIC MYTHOLOGY” WORKSHOP: “For thousands of years Celtic Mythology has provided for us a rich tapestry of stories that has fed our imagination from generation to generation through an unbroken oral tradition. The essence of the old myths and legends remains the same, but their narration is subtly changed to reach each new audience so that the ancient wisdom can be received afresh.. You are invited to spend this weekend exploring the magic and mystery of some ancient tales, revisiting the Gods of Nature, the superhuman yet fallible heroes and heroines and the mercurial shapeshifting Shee (from the Otherworld).These characters interact on many levels playing out the struggles of life, death, love, loss and jealousy against a backdrop of danger, wonder and unpredictable forces. Drawing from the landscape of Cape Clear we can re-acquaint ourselves with the natural elements that shaped these wonderful stories and examine the spiritual and psychological truths that can still inspire our storytelling today. No previous knowledge of Celtic Mythology is necessary. However participants are welcome to bring a favourite story they would like to share /explore.”



 Jan Blake, master storyteller in residence


Jan Blake & students  



2006 storytelling workshop above South Harbour

2006 storytelling workshop above South Harbour 

Carol Russell, master storyteller in residence

Carol Russell, master storyteller in residence

The group at work in the conservatory

The group at work in the conservatory


Michael Parent’s Workshop of 2005.  

Kate at work before the fire

Kate at work before the fire

Out for a walk to the Castle of Gold

Out for a walk to the Castle of Gold


The Group (minus one who had to catch an early ferry!)
The Group (minus one who had to catch an early ferry!)

Kate Corkery
Kate Corkery


Hats off to Ed Stivender and his BanjoDovie Thomason & Scotish Traveller Teller Duncan Williamson above South Harbour

Some of the 2002 Group Learning from EdPat the Hat Speight, 2001 Workshop LeaderParticipant Mark Winwood on a Storytelling Walk

Pat Speight's Workshop Group, 2001

Liz at ease 1999


Workshop 2000

Once upon a time, and a wet breezy time it was, a group of storytellers converged on Cape Clear Island for a workshop. In fact, which often has little to do with truth – as the facts of me are so much calcium, phosphorous, water, but the truth of me something else entirely, maybe even a story – these tellers arrived during the torrential rains and gale-force winds of the recent Halloween weekend, while England was all but drowning. And they ended up sharing their lives with each other in and out of the tales.

Led by Liz Weir of Northern Ireland, they learned to shorten not just muddy roads but meandering lanes and hilly gorse-infested rabbit tracks. Trenchant bits of wisdom lighted late-night forays from rambling house to bed and assisted seven early-morning swimmers to survive daring dips into wintry waters.

One teller hailed from Argentina via UCC, two from Australia, a set of twins celebrating their fiftieth birthday from the mountains of Arizona; from Galway and Carlow they came; from Midleton and North Wales, Berkshire and Glanmire, Eyeries and Belfast, Cork and Clonakilty, Dublin and Castletown Bere, from the bear-haunted forests of Vermont. Now what, someone says, could be more motley?

"Tradition," I suddenly hear, "isn’t the worship of ashes but the passing on of fire." But what to do with the new stories learned? "Well," says Liz in her soft voice, "a new story’s like a new pair of shoes. As you break them in, they become like a pair of slippers." But what must one do to become a good storyteller? "You need to be able to listen." What are you and you and you doing here? "I’m in storytelling because I’m nosy." How’d you get here? "My grandfather used to say I was vaccinated with a phonograph needle." Who do you learn from? "It’s the people you think you’ve nothing to learn from you learn from."

These tidbits come from every direction, young and old, male and female, professional teller and neophyte. "Storytelling’s not about performance but about being you." "I just love being in places where stories are told." "Critical for me is to know what to tell when – and when to shut up." "This experience here on Cape, it’s like another bead on my necklace."

A mesmerizing sixty-seven-year-old shopkeeper shares a discovery: "Coming to this island’s like cutting the umbilical cord."

But why bother telling stories at all? For one thing, Liz, with her experience of what happens between Unionist and Republican, among the inmates of the many prisons she visits, in old folks’ homes and orphanages, in denominational schools along border areas, whispers, "It’s impossible to hate someone once you know their story."

As with so much of what she effortlessly tosses out, I have to digest this one, don’t wish to prove a swine before her pearls. I catch myself pondering, Is this why Jesus and Lao-tzu told stories instead of delivering admonitions through sermons? Did they give us stories to draw conclusions from and make our own instead of commandments engraved in stone that brook no further consideration?

How do you learn to tell stories? "Don’t learn a story off like a poem, but as a series of images." Another visitor answers with a story: A Traveller, when he wants a story, lies down with a blanket over his head and waits. He may or may not be aware that that’s an ancient Celtic tradition, but the story he needs comes to him all the same.

Do we laugh? Well, what would you do if asked to share with a group something that no one knows about you? One participant, a rambunctious TV personality, suddenly grabs our attention, hesitates dramatically, booms out in his vibrant bass voice: "Something you may not know about me?" Pause. "I’m heterosexual!"

On the main pier one day, a certain awkward rumble issues forth and a man quips Canadian teller Dan Yashinsky’s (in)famous line from last year’s workshop: "’Tis a sad ass that can’t rejoice."

What did they discover about themselves by participating in the workshop? "I felt self-confident like never before, and that was thanks to the stories." "That I have the ability to weave the content of my imagination into a digestible form for the world at large." "Self-doubt isn’t a bad thing: it’s possible to keep enough as is good for you, and banish the rest."

What surprised them most during the course of the workshop? "The open spirit – creativity was not a rare treasure but a common sun." "That despite cosy fire, warm room & full telling nobody had even the slightest hint of sleepiness." "How fast some people can become close through stories." "That people told very personal stories in front of strangers."

Asked to describe the highlight of the weekend, one participant replied, with the group concurring like a stalwart Greek chorus, "Arriving as strangers, leaving as friends."

And as this curious bunch went their wet ways home, they proceeded quiet as children alone after dark near the haunts of fairies. They listened, they waited, they chatted with the Good People. And they never asked those cats a single question.

Workshop Group 1999

(A behind-the-scenes peek at a strange gathering on a remote place in a different time.)

Coming from Toronto, Canada, late autumn 1999, to Cape Clear Island, West Cork, Ireland, to teach a single long-weekend workshop on storytelling, didn’t phase self-proclaimed neophyte Dan Yashinsky. But, after all, his East European grandmother used to say, “How does the recipe for Romanian cake begin? Steal two eggs. . . .”

The eleven workshop participants hailed from New Zealand, Wales, England, the USA, and from Dublin to Cork to Clonakilty to the western fringe of rural Ireland. Two were professional storytellers already, one a professor of sociology, another a puppeteer and TV personality, a busker (who also covers herself in glorious mud and becomes a stunning statue), a clown, a writer and storytelling festival director, a librarian, a secondary school teacher, an EFL teacher. Aged from twenty-five to sixty-odd, they had in common a literally bounding desire to share and improve their storytelling abilities.
Saturday and Sunday afternoons the group split into combinations of three or four and, in Australian fashion, went walkabout around the island telling stories while exploring pre-hi-storic Neolithic ruins or skirting the edge of a seaside cliff or simply shortening some of the surprisingly Alpine roads. While the tellers’ legs were being stretched, so too their abilities and imaginations. Stories weren’t measured in minutes but in miles. And then, mornings and nights, the group met in a truly rambling house, the southernmost in all of Ireland, where they told story after story beside the open fire. Instead of growing tired of stories and nodding off, they seemed to become ever more awake to every nuance: with stories as “with myths,” Italo Calvino says through Dan, “one shouldn’t be in a hurry.”
When asked what they enjoyed most about the weekend, they had no hesitation in responding, “hearing other people’s stories while nudged by Dan’s gentle and unassuming way of being everywhere and drawing the best out of everyone”; “getting to know each other while becoming empowered through telling my own story”; “the camaraderie as we walked and talked.”
And what did they learn or discover? “It’s great fun not to be uptight while realizing it’s about time I started finishing more things!” “I’m equal!” “Because of the sheer power of the stories, I saw that other people, too, could enjoy themselves immensely without going near a pub!” “The imagination of the other participants!” “How much people relaxed and how well their storytelling came on, enabled me to want to tell stories henceforth!”
When asked what they enjoyed least, a number said, “That doesn’t apply.” Another answered, “Not getting here earlier.” And yet another, “Having to remember where the dog-poop in the middle of the path was in the dark.”
After a weekend like this one, I can better understand why one of Dan’s mentors, storyteller and Native American Angela Sidney, approaching the end of her life, could conclude: “Well, I have no money to leave my grandchildren. My stories are my wealth.”
Why, it was only a little less than three millennia ago, or very roughly one million ninety-five thousand days and nights back, that the poet Homer wrote one of Dan’s favorite quotations: “Here’s a long night - an endless night - before us, and no time yet for sleep, not in this hall. Recall the past deeds and the strange adventures. I could stay up until the sacred Dawn as long as you might wish to tell your story.”
Despite the inventions of the fleet-footed last century, this storytelling workshop weekend, with thanks to an expert neophyte from Canada, proved to the participants that humans haven’t essentially changed throughout their recorded history. By the way, have you heard the one about the littlest person who ever sat under a cow?

Workshop of '96

Laura Simms teaching

Sheila Stewart, 1998 workshop


A behind-the-scenes peek at the Cape Clear International Storytelling Workshop,

October 24 -26, 1998

"Leave everything you've ever been taught at the door," the woman rocking by the fireside speaks firmly, invitingly, challengingly; "I want empty shelves so that I can start building."

So begins a two-and-a-half-day marathon storytelling workshop in the southernmost house in Ireland. Sixteen people ranging from 25 to 65, 4 Americans, 6 English, 2 Scots, 4 Irish, sit in a circle fanning out from storyteller-in-residence Sheila Stewart, the most distinguished living female storyteller amongst the Scottish Travellers. Intent on bringing forth authentic feeling within people's "voices", she opens her Conyach Workshop.

But before I tell you about the surprises in store for us, some background on Sheila. Of all her siblings & cousins, she was selected at age 5 to carry on the artistic tradition. A daily ritual was "me sitting on my uncle's knee and he singing ballads to me." Now, at age 63, she brims with songs and stories about Traveller life.

A member of the celebrated Stewarts of Blairgowrie, Scotland's foremost musical family, Sheila has lectured at Harvard and Princeton, been acclaimed "Scotland's Cultural Ambassador", told stories to President Gerald Ford in a White House snug, sung before 385,000 in Glasgow, performed before the Pope. It's her sense of the entire story spectrum that gives her the passionate perspective from which to teach this Conyach, the first workshop of its sort ever offered in The Republic of Ireland, let alone on the unspoilt Island Kingdom of Cape Clear.

She begins by explaining Conyach. "Everything's from your heart, nae your head. I want to introduce you to yourself. Want to help you tap into your inner self, get a different vision of life. You see, storytelling's a natural function. You sit, look, tell. Therapists need to come to me," she laughs, looking at us, for two of us are therapists; "I make it easier for people to get through to them."

She launches into ballad: "Faulse Faulse hae you been to me my love / How often you've changed your mind, / But since you've led your love on another fair maid, / I'm afraid you're no more mine." Little do we realise that before the Conyach's over, we will have laughed -- and cried -- because of this song and our own versions of it.

Before she sings the ballad again, she suggests that we listen closely so as to identify what she's doing with the words, the tune. She demonstrates how she projects into the song, moulds the words. We hear her relief at the end. We encounter a new trinity: words, tune, Conyach. This workshop is all about "tapping in" to it. First lesson: insert our identities into the ballad.

That sounds simple until we discover personal blockages keep us from tapping in. Thankfully Sheila has exercises to strip us of these. "The head's for pure educational purposes," she says dismissively. Next we know, we're energetically stroking up the sides of our cheeks with the backs of our hands, whooa! whooa! whooa! We're punching into the air above our heads, hitting the very thoughts we've just exorcised, oogh! oogh! oogh! Energies pour into wild motions. With gale howling outside and coal fire blazing inside, the room erupts in deep sounds chock-full of lungs and emotion.

Taking a breather, we hear some history. Sheila's the last in a long line, Duncan Williamson, Stanley Robinson, herself. "So I'm here with a vengeance to give ye the roots." Sadly, we learn that her kids aren't teaching their kids cant, the secret Traveller's language. Sheila, vetted at age 5, "was taken, and I was pumped. I didn't have a normal childhood. I was given over to my uncle, and he gave me the culture, and I was returned to my mother at age 15."

Having noted the giant waves breaking in Roaringwater Bay, we return to our blockages. "What makes you angry?" she asks. "All my life I've been controlled. When to sneeze. When to fart. When not to look up. So we have to get anger out." And guilt. Hatred. "But when anger's taken out, all the rest follows." And you can't speak, or sing, with an authentic voice unless these blockages are released.

We begin a pulling session. In pairs, we sit facing each other. The person who's "it" is to hold on to his or her anger no matter what, hell high water or hurricane -- and winds up to 70 mph are now hitting the house. The ferry's cancelled. We're marooned. So. What's to do but concentrate. Arms straight out front. The partner grips the person who's "it" by the wrists and starts pulling, demanding the other person's anger. The person who's "it" resists, hisses or screams out "No, my anger's mine, you can't have it, no, never! Never!" Again and again. When mutual exhaustion sets in from this physical, spiritual tug-of-war, the two fall back.

We talk about what has happened, experience how the exercise creates tolerance. We learn that it'd work even better if, say, we were to go to the bottom of a garden, take hold of a tree branch, and in the privacy of our own yards try to keep all our anger from that tree.

Then we start getting rid of fake voices, performance voices rather than natural voices. We work at relaxing our vocal chords. In a loosening exercise, we hang our heads between our knees, stick out our tongues, waggle our heads so that our cheeks vibrate. And we push out a sound that's like "wa-a-a-aa-aa". Man, do we wag it! And we're suddenly utterly relaxed, our voices ours rather than what we think they should be like. We "get our vocal chords into perspective."

Just before a tea break, Sheila says to the group, "Words are the most exciting thing in the world. And all of this has to do with re-healing the body. Soon you'll be able to put your own identity into your stories." She shares what has become her refrain: "I'm just planting the seed."

The next morning, Sunday, we gather by 10.00, fire blazing, wind howling like banshees, rain pelting down -- but ferry running. Sheila wakes us up with a story and says "I've a long tongue." She tells us of an uncle of hers who saw the wind, shares some of the characteristics of her cant language with us (no numbers in it, for example), confesses that, younger, she "was always the cow's tail."

And we're into a new exercise, shaking our hands in the air, feeling them grow, feeling them spongy, receptive. This afternoon we'll learn "the secret". Sheila relates how she became a blood sister to a Comanche chief after visiting the Lincoln Memorial, that place where "there's a wee man sitting in a chair." At one point during a formal meal, when the Indian chieftain leans over to a brave and whispers something in his secret language, Sheila overhears and understands what he says, tells him. He draws his knife, stabs both their fingers, squeezes them together. Apparently a Traveller visited America centuries back, married into a tribe, taught the males his secret language, one which today only male Indians speak. Her cant language. The next day, Sheila's birthday, the Indians throw a surprise party for her.

Back to the ballad. We're to sing it separately, each putting into it anger, then defiance, finally release. We have to put the ballad into our own voices; we're not to act it. "Think syllables!" she cries,. "Tunnel your constructiveness into what you do best." And, every once and a while, she reminds us that this afternoon "I'll give you the secret. The dot at the end of the sentence."

We go around the room, some singing, some without any tune whatsoever, one with an entirely different song. So personal. So intimate. All trying. Even those of us who refuse to sing are trying. We're a family. Most of us didn't know each other until yesterday morning. The final words of the song come out quietly bitter, or with forgiving regret, or with delicate relief. Depending on the identity of the singer, on the degree of personal emphasis, the final three words -- "no more mine" -- take on antithetical meanings. We witness Conyach, experience that the same story can have completely different resolutions, depending on who tells it.

After lunch we know that this is it: We're to mix soul with spirit no less, find out the secret for ourselves. No parlour game this. After much coaching and story, we prepare, sit separately, visualize our hands going down our throats, feeling, feeling for the soul down there somewhere, somewhere near our solar plexus. We're to grasp the soul, hang on to it tight, pull it up a bit, mix and mix it with our spirit, and only then we bring soul and spirit out of our mouths, fling them forth as they blend together with our voices. How we send them off with a shout of shouts.

A feeling of fullness comes over the suddenly quiet room. We look at each other, feeling both empty and full, tired yet refreshed. Sheila confides that usually the soul is quiet, dormant, dull, but when it's mixed with the spirit and used in the voice, why, "soul becomes a pet." We relate what happened to each of us. One saw his soul as a black disk, pulled it up, mixed it with little glitters in the chest area, drew it up and threw it forth. To his surprise the soul spread out and became the nighttime sky, the spirit the stars in it. What happened to the others, the silk scarf, the pink numinous ball, the shimmering double-humped island, remains our secret.

Sheila confesses that at the end of a performance, she'd rather a silence at first than applause. She'd rather the audience was into feeling and thinking, not simply being entertained. "I want to entertain, but in a deep way. I want to help myself and my audience. Telling is a sharing, not a performing. I come last in my telling but I have to place myself first." Paradox. And if anger's still in you, it "blinds you. You don't see the other person's point of view."

We begin to pull the Conyach together. At first we worked on the trinity of anger, defiance, release. Then on anger, defiance, a sprinkle of love. Finally on soul, spirit, and voice. Ours to use. Sheila wakes us from reverie: "Anger's got bugger-all to do with spirit. I love the secret that much I could put it between two slices of bread. Bugger the voice, it's how you produce it!" We at last understand why sometimes, even when we hear a super story, the teller has put us to sleep because there's no Conyach. Eureka!

We finally experience that storytelling's not a style or technique but a natural function. If we can develop Conyach, storytelling will flow as naturally as a river or a stream.

At the very end, Sheila in the doorway, we burst into spontaneous song, let loose for the first time a tuneful, tapestry-rich blending of individual voices. We sing our version of "Faulse Faulse" as thanks and tribute to Sheila, our catalyst for Conyach.

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