The Art and Science of Storytelling with Sisonke Msimang

Centre for Stories is pleased to launch our first ever online storytelling course. The Art and Science of Storytelling with Sisonke Msimang is a fully online, self-paced course that covers the basics of oral storytelling.

Working on the principle that every one of us have a story to tell, this course is about the art and science of oral storytelling. Learn to tell stories in ways that are authentic to you, and suited to your personality and style. Each module focuses on a different aspect of thinking about, practising and then telling your own story. Through a series of exercises, you’ll learn about the different elements of a story, how to structure your own experiences to make meaning out of them, and how to determine if a story is ready to be told yet. Whether you’re looking to boost your confidence on the stage, you need help making more interesting and personal work presentations, or you’re simply honing your craft as a writer and performer, this course is for you.

This course is facilitated by Centre for Stories’ head story trainer, Sisonke Msimang. Sisonke is the author of Always Another Country and The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela. She has written for a range of international publications including the New York Times and the Washington Post. She has been a regular storyteller and facilitator for The Moth and TED, and was the Literature and Ideas curator for Perth Festival in 2019 and 2020. At the Centre for Stories, Sisonke facilitates storytelling training workshops in one-on-one and group formats to empower people to share their stories and develops the Centre’s storytelling training resources.

This course has been made possible with funding from Lotterywest.

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Cost: $165
Access period: 120 days

This course is structured as a series of seven modules. Each module contains an instructional video that ranges from three minutes to twenty minutes. Some modules also contain a downloadable worksheet or handout that you will work through during each session. In total, the course contains just over one hour of video content. All videos are captioned. You can complete the course in one go or spread it out over a few weeks. We encourage you to go at a pace that feels comfortable to you, giving yourself enough time to think through your story and take in all of the theoretical content.

Course Outline
Introduction – General overview of the course and introduction to oral storytelling.
Principles of Storytelling – This module covers the principles that govern the way we learn, teach and tell stories at the Centre for Stories. They will guide you as you develop your story.
Story prompts –Four prompts will help you to reflect on your own experiences – each one forming the foundation of a possible story. You will pick one to focus on in the remaining modules.
Elements of a story – In this module, you will learn the key features of a story. You will use these elements as you develop your own story, making sure each element is clear in your mind before moving forward.
Refining your story – How do you make your story ‘pop’? Sisonke will teach you some tips and tricks to elevate your story to the next level.
FAQs – Some commonly asked questions posed by newly trained storytellers will be answered.
Additional resources – This module features storyteller Colin Archibald interview by Sisonke.

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