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Zambian Storytellers

storytellers.jpgI am so looking forward to my next Zambian project! We are planning to return to Zambia to record the native stories and fables of all 73 indigenous tribes. In the Summer of 2005, I took a Digital Storytelling Workshop in Sedona that convinced me that it was important to save indigenous tales. In the Spring of 2006, MCC Media Arts offered its first Digital Storytelling class. The value of capturing the individual memories and generational traditions of the elders of a culture is something that inspires me.

In our first Zambian visit, the Chair of the National Arts Council asked us to record five Zambian storytellers and commit the footage to DVD so it could be distributed to schools and universities throughout Zambia. It was an exciting and wonderful idea. We went to the Council headquarters with the assumption that we'd be recording in one of the buildings. They had other ideas.

They marched us into the bush and we recorded the native Zambian storytellers in a natural setting. We moved a big rock for the storytellers to sit on. We found mats for the children. We used the shoot as a learning experience. Each member of the crew had the opportunity to try different positions. Steadicam, glidecam, audio, handheld. Whatever they wanted to try. We had all six cameras running and every piece of hand-built equipment in action. It was a great day. Afterwards, the crew and I spent hours lecturing about filmmaking, demonstrating techniques and networking with aspiring Zambian filmmakers. It was an increible day. Here's a clip of the day.