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Singer Songwriter & Vocal Coach, Lizanne Hennessey - Voice Coach

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What makes you care?

In his talk, 'The Clues to a Good Story', Andrew Stanton suggests that, when we hear a story, we subconsciously want to 'work for our meal', that we want to deduce, be provoked, be stimulated like in real life. From his experience, a good story begins with is a promise that it'll be worth your time, and the ingredients are anticipation, uncertainty, and infusing the gift of wonder.

He quotes:
"There isn't anyone you couldn't learn to love, once you've heard their story."

What makes you care? The story itself, or how it's told?

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    May 20 2013: The nature of my work means that I have the very genuine honour and privilege of hearing personal stories that sometimes have been 'locked up' inside - often for years, or even lifetimes. Those hitherto locked-up stories that have shaped the person sitting in front of me, are often so powerful as to induce a profound empathic reaction in me - such that I feel I have almost lived that story myself.

    What makes me care, is an understanding of their experience via my own lived experience. If there is any similarity or match in emotional reaction to such experiences, the more powerful the story seems to me. That power is increased a thousandfold if the person has never related the story to anyone else before, because of its raw, visceral nature. Seldom has such a story been modified by the intellect to be told as a story 'by rote'.

    That's not to say relating stories by rote are 'flat' by comparison. They can also be powerful if the listener can perceive that the emotion attached to it is still genuinely felt.
    • May 21 2013: Wonderfully said, Allan. You are fortunate indeed, to be in a position to hear such moving stories! And the storytellers are just as fortunate they have you as a listener!

      You've made an important point about the role of the listener - perhaps consciously? A storyteller with an attentive listener may tell a more engaging story, than one who feels no one is listening...

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