Story Shoots and Musical Roots
A collaboration between theatre maker Mary Sheehan and musician Ríona Sally Hartman, Story Shoots and Musical Roots was a programme of participatory music and drama workshops for toddlers and their parents that culminated at an event at Cruinniú na nÓg 2018. Story Shoots and Musical Roots was part of Dublin’s Culture Connects’ The National Neighbourhood in collaboration with Dublin City Council Libraries and The National Concert Hall.
All photos by Mark Stedman
Over the course of several months parent toddler workshops took place in Dublin Central Library (aka the Ilac library) and Charleville Mall Library.
The workshops began by inviting participants to share songs, stories and rhymes. From there we began creating soundscapes by exploring musical textures using various instruments (shakers, rain makers, wave drums...etc.), non-traditional objects (crepe paper, fabrics...etc.) and our voices.
Gradually through this process certain themes started emerging such as sleeping and waking, growing and the changing seasons. As these themes emerged we continued to expand on them and to explore them through drama and music.
As the workshops progressed we wound up developing a collective, abstract story that incorporated both pre-existing and newly composed song and story elements.
The programme culminated in an event, open to parents and toddlers from outside the participatory workshop groups, in Mud Island Community Gardens for Cruinniú na nÓg 2018. For this final event we collectively performed our "story" in such a way that it lead the participants around the garden and interacted with it: we were little sleeping creatures that woke up, explored the garden, "found" sounds and songs planted amongst the flowers, collected them and brought them back to our den where we built nests for them and nurtured them to help them grow into big songs.