Who We Are
With our backgrounds in Storytelling Performance (that’ll be Josh) and Theatre Directing (Lily), we joined forces in 2005 to see how else storytelling could be used.
Over the past decade this has lead us to working with all sorts, from doctors to scientists, CEOs to volunteers, auctioneers to management consultants. We love helping them unpick and understand their issues, as well as hearing them flourish when telling their stories.
We have recently been joined by Ben, our presence, body language and voice expert. He’ll get you noticed and making a huge personal impact in no time.
Janine is our Museum education expert, with 10 years experience, working with all walks of life in London’s highest profile museums, you can be sure she will interpret your collections into well rounded and highly crafted education masterpieces.
When people ask me what I do, the simplest answer is that I teach people to think and speak at the same time.
At school I was the girl who never put her hand up to ask a question and stuttered her way through reading her work out-loud to the class.
But I found a confidence in drama. It showed me how to speak and to communicate and gave me a creative set of tools with which I could explore and articulate my thoughts.
I founded theWholeStory with Josh to help others find their voice and get it heard.
When designing a workshop or working face to face with someone, I look for the challenge or barrier that is stopping their thinking, listening or speaking and find the simplest, most pragmatic approach to overcoming it.
What technique, process, exercise or alternative thinking does this person need to be able to do or say what they want well.
Having always been garrulous, it is perhaps surprising that I fell into storytelling purely by chance: here was an opportunity to talk all day, to a captive audience no less, and earn a living from it. A piece of cake.
Visiting schools and performing to children, from 3 to 16 years of age, I soon realised that if you did not engage your whole audience for the entire duration of each performance, you would be punished.
When Lily and I set up theWholeStory, we broke down what I did and analysed what made storytelling such a powerful communication medium. This enabled us to create a system that could be taught to others, so that their communication could benefit from all that storytelling had to offer.
When performing storytelling, it is important to take your audience beyond the setting they find themselves in, to a place where everything is possible. I endeavour to recreate this in our training, so that our participants are not afraid to try, to make mistakes, to learn and ultimately to improve.
Originally I trained as a dancer in the early nineties, touring internationally with various ballet and modern dance companies before retraining as an actor and working extensively in theatre, film and television. Since 2008 I have been coaching individuals and groups to improve their physical presence, vocal impact and face to face communication skills. This led to an MA in Voice Studies from The Royal Central School of Speech of Drama and further training in voice with world renowned vocal coach, Kristin Linklater. I am one of 200 individuals worldwide designated to teach her method… Freeing the Natural Voice.
My job is to help you look and sound great in any face to face communication. I am passionate about fostering the natural potential we all have to deliver a clear, engaging message to any audience.
For the past decade I have been an art and drama practitioner in heritage education, working in high profile and niche museums with most audiences, from babies to elders. Prior to that, I worked in children’s television as a researcher/ producer, got a degree in drama theatre studies/ English, and am a professional actor performing at, amongst others, the National Theatre.
My specialism is in community practice, creating experiences that bring museum interpretation to life.
I like to create environments where children are having so much fun they forget they are learning, but will always remember the day. The sessions we create at theWholeStory are always written with carefully crafted thought for the subject and curriculum, and allow for subjective thinking and open ended questioning.
Storytelling is the way that we find a structure that can be a platform to challenge thinking and inspire students to facilitate change within themselves and others.
That for me is the best form that education can take.