The Bath Storytelling Circle is a monthly gathering of oral storytellers, folk-singers, poets and raconteurs, from the Bath area and beyond, who meet upstairs at The Raven (Queen Street, Bath) on the third Monday every month to celebrate the modern practice of an ancient art. The Circle has twice featured on TV (in 2006 and 2010).
Between December 1999 and February 2020, the Circle met every month, come rain or shine, fire and flood, boom and bust, millennium bugs and Brexit - passing its 20th anniversary in December 2019. Unfortunately, since March 2020 the Circle has had to take a break due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the limitations on live entertainment in confined spaces. We hope to be back up and running in September 2021.
Storytellers are nothing without listeners - which is why the Circle welcomes one and all, whether you have a tale to tell or simply wish to listen. One reason people find the Circle an enjoyable evening's entertainment is the diversity of material and the range of styles from regulars and newcomers alike, from traditional folk tales to contemporary poetry and comedy anecdotes. So come along just to listen, relax in friendly surroundings with some real ale and fine fare, and simply enjoy the companionship.
The Circle's gatherings are open and inclusive, and entry is free - on the understanding that those attending will avail themselves of the fine ale (and perhaps also the wholesome pies) on sale in The Raven, a cosy, CAMRA-rated, city-centre pub. The Circle's performers are mostly drawn from the local community in the Bath area and include professional as well as amateur contributors, and long-time older residents as well as younger performing arts and creative writing students. There's only one rule: contributions from performers must be from memory or extempore, not read from text or notes.
If you wish to perform, see the evening's Master of Ceremonies at the start of the evening for a place on the 'list'. And to ensure all those who wish to perform get a slot, and listeners have plenty of variety, we ask that individual items take no more than 10 minutes - though we welcome any type of story, poem, anecdote or song within this guideline.
The activity of the Circle is the subject of a chapter entitled 'Voices in the City' in the groundbreaking educational resource book Storytelling for a Greener World (Hawthorn Press 2014).