Storytelling Portico di Romagna

A place is not simply what you see. There is always something that comes to you through your senses. A smell, a color, a light, a story that someone is telling you about. Stories can come from the place but also from the memories that you hide inside of you. Places talk to us.

Our meeting with Giovanna Conforto was barely casual. She was staging at the International StoryTelling Festival of Edinburgh while Massimiliano saw her and thought she was perfect for Portico di Romagna, the place where stories can begin and end and take a different shape.

What is the storytelling: a true meaning

“If someone is able to find an Italian word for storytelling, I will be glad!”, says Giovanna, but there is not. Storytelling is not a question of what, is a question of how. Storytelling is a method that can be used to communicate almost everything: science, technology, music, history and many other things. It’s a way to pass difficult concepts through the narration. It’s not really this, it’s the way we use to narrate.

Which means research, elaborate and tell. That is why Giovanna says storytelling for something. And this is also the project that is developing in Portico since 2014 at the Olmo Italian School.

A couple of groups of international storytellers already came here to live the borough, taking their inspiration from the woods around but also from the many corners of Portico. Stories can be completely invented, starting from a special aspect that can be different for any of us, but they can also start from fairytales or just stories that each of the story tellers know.

The international school of storytelling of Portico di Romagna

The effect of these stories is powerful. First of all the work that comes at the end is shared with people and this is the basic principle of storytelling. The storyteller goal is to find a powerful story, develop it and act it in front of a public, mainly local. That is why the place, especially boroughs like Portico di Romagna are perfect for these activities.

“The storytelling is a visual art”, says Giovanna, “we work through images that can be in our mind but also can be drawn as a sketch to help our histories becoming a true tale”.

The storytelling center of Portico di Romagna is the first one in Italy and is linked to the International school of storytelling at Emerson College, Sussex, Uk.