"Through stories we see ourselves as if in a mirror," says Marni Gillard, who
discovered storytelling while teaching middle school English in Niskayuna,
Then after almost 20 years of teaching, Marni left the classroom in 1991 to tell stories full
time. Marni performs for all ages at schools and universities, libraries, museums,
prison facilities, houses of worship, family gatherings, festivals, even at
Marni's tales will inspire her listeners to find stories in themselves. She
reminds us all that we have a storyteller alive within.
"It is a false notion
that talent is the commodity behind our artistry. We humans must simply
activate our desire, and find the courage, to look into a story at our own
reflection. Then with our unique brands of creativity, we can bring that
reflection to life."
A frequent conference presenter, Marni is the author of
Storyteller, Storyteacher: The Power of Storytelling for Teaching and
Living (Stenhouse, 1996), winner of a 1998 Ann Izard Storyteller's Choice
Award for storytelling resources.
book, in progress, is Storytell Your Life.
Marni has written many articles beginning
in the mid 1980s, and she co-edited Give a Listen: Stories of Storytelling in School published by the National Council of Teachers of English, a
collection of essays by teachers using storytelling in their work.
Without a Splash: Diving into Childhood Memories, is Marni's coming of age double
CD of five interlocking stories about a girl's life from age "4 and
3/4" to age 13 in a small town in upstate New York in the early 1960's.
Teachers find it full of great models for student writers and storytellers.
At The Story Studio in Schenectady, Marni offers individual and group coaching for beginning and experienced tellers as well as workshops in spontaneous storytelling. She also travels for coaching and works with tellers by phone.