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The 2016 festival is over

There will be info on next year’s event here when we recover enough from this year’s festival to organise it! In the meantime, the 2016 information is still here so you can reminisce or, if you weren’t here, get a taste of what might come in future events.

A word from the president

Tom Muir

Photo: Tom O’Brien

On behalf of the Orcadian Story Trust I am delighted to announce the line-up for the 2016 Orkney Storytelling Festival. The theme this year is Dreams – so settle back and enjoy a verbal feast of wonder, tales and myths that will take you on a journey to far away places where the supernatural dwells. This year’s storytellers are renowned for their ability to suspend reality and act as your guide to a world of fantasy.

Fran O’Boyle is making his first visit to Orkney, and I can’t wait to hear him weave his magic tales. Fran is based in Shropshire, but his roots are firmly embedded in Ireland. He tells myths from the Saxons, Vikings and the Celts, as well as the folklore of the Travellers. As an artist he likes to create an escape route from our often stressed lifestyles in the relentless computer age by using images along with his stories. He will delight both old and young alike with his tales.

Ana Maria Lines is also making her first visit to Orkney, courtesy of our friends in the Scottish International Storytelling Festival’s outreach programme. Ana Maria lives in England, but was born and brought up in São Paulo, Brazil. When I spoke to the Director of the Scottish Storytelling Festival, Donald Smith, he was very clear in his mind that Ana Maria was the right person to be invited to visit Orkney. Her storytelling is steeped in the mythical world of the Amazonian rainforest and she has worked with the Amazonian peoples to learn and understand their stories, songs and dance. She also tells myths and tales from around the world and her passion for these stories is obvious to all who see her.

David Campbell, on the other hand, needs no introduction from me. But he’s getting one anyway! David is no stranger to Orkney, having performed here many times both as a solo storyteller, with his old friend and mentor, the late-great Traveller storyteller, Duncan Williamson, and with the Wrigley Sisters on their collaboration of stories, ‘Orkney After Sunset’. David is also no stranger to the Orkney Storytelling Festival, as he performed here on the second one in 2001. He is a pure delight to hear and to see, telling Celtic myths and wonder tales from the Travellers, as well as stories from around the world. As a true romantic at heart, his love stories have even been known to make an old Orcadian like me say “beuy!” I am delighted to be welcoming him back to these shores.

As well as our guests we will hear stories from local storytellers, Fran Flett Hollinrake and Marita Lück and our committee member and festival regular, Erin Farley. Open mic sessions will continue to help encourage others to share a story and to join in the fun. I might even throw in a story or two from Orkney as well.

Tom Muir
President of the Orcadian Story Trust.


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