Press Play to hear Storyteller Tim Ereneta talks about how he brought Storytelling to the Fringe on the Art of Storytelling with Brother Wolf.
Tim Erenta writes…
Here’s the best thing about a storytelling performance in a Fringe Festival: I don’t have to wait to be discovered. I don’t have to worry about offending my host with my material. The stories that I want to tell, whether they are sacred or profane, personal or traditional: it’s all up to me. I get to decide what I want to put onstage. Such artistic freedom is exhilarating.
Here’s the worst thing about storytelling performance in a Fringe Festival: the audience gets to decide what show they want to see. The stories that I want to tell: there is no guarantee that audiences will want to hear them.
The challenge, then, is to connect to the audience before they arrive at the Festival. This means giving them every opportunity to hear about my show, and crafting a message that honestly describes the show in such a way that that the audience thinks, “that is a show I want to see.” (Of course, depending on which Festival I’m a part of, there are likely anywhere from three dozen to 12 dozen other performing companies also trying to attract the attention of that same audience.)
Putting yourself in a Fringe Festival is essentially enrolling yourself in a marketing boot camp. So, congratulations, storyteller, you get to tell your stories, but… the only person working to get audiences to come see you is… you.
In addition to the thrill of staging your own work, and the agony and the ectasy of getting an audience to come see that work, there’s one more essential part of Fringe fun: immersing yourself in the Festival. There are dozens of shows to see, and dozens of interesting people to meet. Here’s a tip: If you see a show and like it, it is drop dead easy to meet the artist who created it. Offer to help them pack up and leave the theater (typically they have just 15 minutes to get out and a venue manager watching a clock), offer them a free ticket to see your show and give them time during it to plug their own, and/or offer to buy them a drink at the Fringe hangout.
Tim Ereneta of Berkeley, California, enjoys sharing both classic and forgotten fairy tales, with audiences of all ages—but especially adults. He’s told stories on stages from Athens, Georgia, to Chennai, India. In 2006, he received the J.J. Reneaux Emerging Artist Award from the National Storytelling Network. As a seasoned performer in improvisational theater, he has performed with improv troupes in San Francisco and at Fringe Festivals in Orlando, Florida, and Edmonton, Alberta. As a solo performer, he has brought his storytelling to the Capital Fringe (Washington, DC), the Rogue Festival (Fresno, CA), and the San Francisco Fringe Festival.
Tim can also be found exploring storytelling on the Internet. He blogs about storytelling at Breaking the Eggs – http://storytelling.blogspot.com and curates online videos of storytelling performances at Story Lab X – http://storylabx.tumblr.com.
Feel free to learn more about Tim Ereneta on his website: http://www.timereneta.com
Full Discloser – I have received fiscal support from Tim Ereneta fro the show in donations and feedback.