London has a vibrant, exciting and growing adult storytelling scene and I love being part of it. Here are nine of the best places to find storytelling for adults in London!
1. Here in London we have a great many ‘storytelling clubs’ (rather like folk clubs: a mixture of story-rounds and featured performers.) These often attract an more traditional crowd. The best of the bunch are: Storynight at Toriano in North London for their great atmosphere and wide variety of performers, the warm and friendly Stow Tellers in Walthamstow, or the really fantastic Storytelling in Hope club in Eltham. There is of course also the mighty Crick Crack Club who pioneered storytelling for adults in the 80s and 90s and are still going strong with a creative and popular programme.
I’m excited to see the flourishing scene among younger Londoners who have not encountered live retellings of folk tales, myths and legends before. There is an unprecedented hunger in London for the joy of traditional storytelling. For example…
3. I love the Embers Collective, members include Lonan Jenkins, Tim Karp and Sam Rix. They deliver heartfelt and exciting storytelling in all kinds of interesting venues, taking traditional stories and making a party out of them. Look out for them as they are only going to get bigger. (pic shows lucky me telling a guest story with them by a canal in Hackney.) AND ALSO you should not miss…>>
4. Various “true stories told live” nights. These are fantastic and deserve their own blog post. My favourite of these is Spark London. I’ve told a few tales with them over the years and always loved the atmosphere!
5. Not quite traditional storytelling- but London has its share of excellent live literature nights such as Liars League. Short stories read live by actors.
6. If you’ve got a taste for the finer things in life, you might also want to visit 40 winks: Bedtime story nights, maybe the chic-est, definitely the most expensive traditional storytelling experience you’re likely to encounter in London! Tellers are many and include Nell Phoenix, Sally Pomme Clayton and Sef Townsend.
8. Bernadette Russell runs Are you Sitting Comfortably…? and various other brilliant/ batshit-crazy storytelling events for adults only.
9. And I saved the “best” till last…
…ok sorry but i can’t leave this blog post without a shameless plug for my own story night “London Dreamtime” which attracts the MOST AMAZING AUDIENCES IN THE HISTORY OF EVER (not that I’m biased.) Secret storytelling in magical hidden corners.
We’ve been going strong for five years now, come and see us this month (events listed here) or watch us in 90 seconds (below).
In fact if you haven’t experienced the addictive pleasure of storytelling for adults, just go along to ANY of the nights I’ve mentioned. You won’t regret it!
pic: fabulous London Dreamtime audience on the roof of a derelict estate in Walworth as dusk falls.