StorySpotting – Building a Bridge between Folktales and Popular Media

Learn new ways of connecting traditional stories with themes in popular films and books, and create engaging storytelling programs that bring out the best of both!

Working in educational settings storytellers constantly have to prove that traditional tales are relevant to modern audiences. This workshop focuses on how to capture the attention of students who grew up immersed in new media. StorySpotting is the art of finding connections in order to build engaging and intriguing storytelling programs. By the end of the session participants will be able to identify familiar motifs in modern media (film, television, literature, games, etc.) and match them with traditional tales in their repertoire. They will be aware of how to identify points of interests within currently popular narratives, and build on them in their storytelling work.

Workshop length: 90 minutes

Workshop presented:

Kentucky Storytelling Conference, November 7-9, 2014.
Ohio Storytelling Conference, March 28,  2015.

Down the rabbit hole: Intensive research for storytellers

Always wanted to know what it feels like to be Indiana Jones? This is your chance to take dive into the remote, obscure corners of the past, following a half-forgotten trail of folktales and legends! Researching traditional stories can be difficult, but it can also lead to exciting, unexpected, and illuminating discoveries. This session, led by an archaeologist and storyteller, offers insight into how to track down some of the most elusive tales.

By the end of the session participants will be familiar with the basics of storytelling research, as well as some less well-known techniques for tracking down a tale. They will be aware of how classic folklore research tools (e.g. the AaTh motif index) work together with modern media, and how stories can be tracked down above and beyond Google search. They will know about taking research across language barriers, and also will have learned some tips on how to organize and maintain one’s notes and findings.

Workshop length: 90 minutes

Workshop presented:

Northlands Storytelling Conference, April 25-27, 2014.

Adventures in the classroom: Role-playing and storytelling in high school and beyond

Role-playing is a form of creative interactive storytelling. Games based on folktales, legends and myths are being published in great numbers, and are extremely popular among teenagers and young adults, and audience often missing from storytelling events. In this workshop participants can learn about role-playing and find out how to create their own games that can be used for educational purposes, thus providing an entertaining, motivating and memorable learning experience.

This workshop is based on my Master’s Thesis in the ETSU Storytelling program – read the full thesis here!

Workshop length: 90 minutes / 3 hours intensive

Workshop presented:

National Storytelling Conference, July 31-August 4, 2013.

The Power of Heroes: Stories, popular culture and activities

The theme for the 2015 Summer Reading Program was Heroes. It’s a storyteller’s dream. This workshop is designed to provide participants with a wide variety of sources, stories, ideas and activities to make the most of the theme for audiences of all ages. As a storyteller and culture scholar who is passionate about heroes both ancient and modern, Csenge shares experiences and tricks that can make any hero-themed performance a blast!

By the end of the session participants will have stories and sources that fit well into the theme of Heroes.  They will also be richer with some new storytelling activities geared towards audiences by age group, from elementary school to adults. They will have ideas for implementing important messages and diversity into hero-themed storytelling programs. Last but not least, they will be up to date with the hero-related popular culture events that audiences are invested in.

Workshop presented:

Northlands Storytelling Conference, April 24-25, 2015.