Why Kamishibai?

I do Kamishibai because it powerfully conveys any story better than mere storytelling can.

It can hold an audience even in a noisy street environment, or a noisy

classroom for that matter.

This I believe is because its a still image it helps the mind to focus, the images are simple, and the voice adds dimension, acting and Props even more.

Like its european counterpart in street theatre Punch and Judy it needs to grab an audience, and it does.

So once you have got them what can you do with them?

For a start you need never look away from your audience eye contact ( you can’t get that with television),the words are on the back of the cards to keep you on-track.

Its cheating some purist storytellers say,you should not be reading, but telling the story.

But what if you can’t? what if you only purchased the story yesterday? or like me you have a bad memory, or any other missing abilities? then strangely

enough you will be in same boat as the early Kamishibai men and women!

Most Kamishibai would hire the stories from a company called Kashimoto maybe

only for a couple of days so there was no time to learn them. This way they could refresh their performances every week without a big outlay after all the object was to make money . To get an artist to make a set of pictures eight to ten on average cost at today’s prices £350-£400

The types of stories were as varied as you can imagine, war , fairytale, Horror even propaganda , so one artist may not fit all.

My solution some may say cheating again is to use the computer, hack , collage, clipart, build my own images, if you are an artist you can evan use a Pencil!

But what if you can’t draw or you have struggled through and made one set of kamishibai. then why not swop it for another original story then you will have two swap it again and you three. You can swap your own stories as many times as you are asked . See whats on offer on our Swap library

I regularly swap stories with Jackie in Australia.

Its not like books, this is the best bit you tell reinterpret the story anyway you like so its not like giving it away it starts living with retelling and becomes something different.

I like change, one of my big moments with Kamishibai was when my story the “Two Brothers” was Performed in Australia, I’m sure Jackie made it her own story in the telling.