Storytelling is an art that consists of conveying messages, truths, information, knowledge, or wisdom to an audience in an entertaining manner. Music, art or props can be used to make the audience enjoy or understand more the message being conveyed (Dudley). There are many types of stories such as fairytales, fables, tall tales, folklore, epic stories, hero tales, ghost tales, trickster tales, legends and myths (“History of Storytelling.”). Storytelling has been an essential aspect of human culture since its beginnings. Storytelling can be considered the root of psychology, lecture-style teaching and religion. The roots of storytelling can be traced all the way back to the cave drawings done by primitive men. As they had not developed verbal communication yet, they used cave drawings as the means of communication to retell their everyday stories, such as a great hunt, to the people who had not participated and for later generations to remember all the glory of the stories those drawings portrayed. Over the centuries, storytelling has continued to develop. When the first civilizations arose, storytelling began to be used in the form of oral communication and stories were passed down this way from generation to generation. Storytelling also began to be used in written form and the first short stories were written in Egypt over 4000 years ago. Professional storytellers also began to appear, who travelled from place to place telling stories usually in sung form. Storytelling was also developed in Ancient Greece in the form of live theatre. Different stories developed in different parts of the world, also known as folklore, all shared one common theme, they were didactic stories used to teach what was right and what was wrong usually by showing the effects of each, which is why they were particularly used to educate children. During the Middle, storytelling continued to develop. As in Europe most people were illiterate, the Catholic Church used mystery plays to spread the stories of the Bible to the common people. In other parts of the world, such as the Middle East, Islamic leaders encouraged people to learn how to read and write to ensure everyone could read the Quran and avoid stories changing from place to place so that everybody was told the same stories. During the Renaissance, storytelling continued to develop. Writers such as Shakespeare took old tales and transformed them into new stories that could be enjoyed by both nobles and commoners (“The History of Storytelling.”). In the 19th century, writers, such as the Grimm Brothers, began gathered verbal and written stories and turned them into great literary works which have become extremely popular reference works for stories even nowadays (“Fairy Tales.”). Nowadays, storytelling continues to be very relevant. Storytelling has completely changed and now it is most common in the form of books, movies, film, and online. Verbal storytelling has also developed into a new form, stand-up comedy. Not all stand-up comedians are storytellers but many of them could be considered comedic storytellers. Stories are told nowadays for many different reasons. They can be used to teach lessons, entertain, and encourage pride in your own country or culture, or to educate in history and traditions (“The History of Storytelling.”). Fairytales are a type of stories aimed especially at little children that have morals or meanings. Most of these stories also include the theme of magic, hence the word “fairy” (“What are fairytales?”). Fairytales are a very important part of children’s theatre. This is because fairy tales are usually used or adapted in this form of theatre because they are the most appealing type of stories for young audiences. Children’s theatre is also a very good way of bringing fairytales to life and therefore makes the experience more entertaining for children than just being told the story or having to read...
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