In 2002 I was commissioned by Seven Stories at the Childrens center for the book to make and perform a Kamishibai show at the Hatton gallery Newcastle for the Art Show “Through Eastern eyes” a celebration of Childrens art in Picture book form. The artist and exhibitor Satoshi Kitamura was present and saw my show and claimed to be inspired to perform Kamishibai and true to his word he did as far away as Brazil and Mexico.
Then whilst writing more stories and researching further original stories from Japan, I was asked to give a lecture at the story tellers conference in Birmingham ( my home town) I ran a workshop and two participants from that workshop took up Kamishibai. Sarah Rundle and ………………… Again more anon on the site
2010/11 I performed Kamishibai in combination with Punch and Judy the latest being In a local school one Christmas which was visited by Yumiko, my Japanese friend who despite translating for me had never seen my show!
I hope to develop in an altogether new way, I want to produce stories about the characters I already do in my other guise as Clown. So Dame Dilly Grockel will be telling the Tragical comical story of her Life entitled “Never Judge a book by the Cover”. A show about Punch and Judy to explain it, both historically, and its place in society as the common mans voice , or put more simply freedom of speech. Having hopefully opened my audiences eyes I will follow with a traditional Punch show. Lastly but not least “Sir Klankalot” will be telling tales of his very long life( he has been canned for years) and of his great love and affinity with sardines!
Note: to see some of my other characters visit: www.boclown.com
Another venture will be to produce Kamishibai of the Parables, brilliant stories even if you are not religious!
Since my First show at the Hatton Gallery
“Through Eastern Eyes” I have been fascinated by the power of Kamishibai. That was where I met Satoshi Kitamura the author and illustrator : he had actually seen Kamishibai in Japan as a lad.
Since that time I have experimented with using Kamishibai in various forms:
My stories come from Japan , China , India , and, increasingly, my head. I like the fact that the children interact and often change aspects of the story with their feedback. This is particularly evident in the P4C sessions as they are encouraged to voice their opinions.
- With PowerPoint for a story telling competition in The Ouseburn Valley
- As a stimulus for discussions in Philosophy for Children (P4C) also known as “Thinking for change”.
- As a magic trick in a mind reading section of a space Show, “The Thoughtron”
- To publicize and promote Cycling, a show about the history of cycling from Leonardo Da Vinci till modern day.
- I am constantly experimenting with ways of generating the images: digital photography, collage, computer generation and lastly paint (I am no artist with a brush not like Satoshi).
- I particularly like the way stories develop with the telling and, as with the Punch and Judy show, every performer discovers their own style.
- I hope today we can all share our experiences to make Kamishibai grow.