SLAMtastic storytelling

It’s been nearly two weeks since I attended SLAMtastic Storytelling/Contes SLAMtastique at Café Shaika but what a great event.

According to organizer John David Hickey, the Oct. 3 event was a Montreal first.

The idea is based on poetry slams but instead of a poem participants have five minutes to tell a story.

The tellers were a blend of francophones and anglophones. And what a mix of stories. There was everything from a traditional Irish/English fable about a pickpocket family to a story about a bad dating experience, a cautionary tale about ogres, and an original piece about warriors.

Two of the francophone tellers incorporated singing into their storytelling. In one case, the audience was encouraged to sing along (actually mimic the sounds of an owl but anyway), it was sort of a call and response situation.

After each performance, the judges, a mix of audience members chosen by the organizer and friends of the organizer, held up pads of paper with numbers printed on them

Some of the tellers were seasoned tellers known here in Quebec. Others are known in the spoken word community.

Guest performer Ian Ferrier played guitar and sang/spoke tales about slime and bacteria and life in the Gaspé.

In the end Eveline Ménard won the prize – as I recall a pack of chocolate bars. I didn’t quite grasp all of her story but there was one bit: ” C’est dangereux d’être dans la royaume des femmes sans être invité.” Loosely translated: “It’s dangerous to enter the kingdom (queendom) of women without an invite.” Watch out guys!

The next SLAMtastic Storytelling event happens at 7 p.m. at Shaika on Monday Nov. 14th. I’m looking forward to it!

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