Q&A: Suit and Pace, Story Blanket

Tell us about your show?

Beth: Our show is Story Blanket – we’ve made our own version of a ceilidh quilt (with some help from my Auntie Helen and the pupils at Lochgelly South Primary School) depicting our favourite traditional stories from Scotland and around the world. Come along and choose which of our fabulous, fun stories you want to hear!

Andrew: All our stories are really interactive, we also use bits of puppetry and do some songs – you could meet the Nellie (Queen of all Elephants)Suit and Pace, a big footed woman or lots of mice!

How did you become interested in storytelling?

Andrew: My background is in acting, and just after graduation I toured Angus primary schools with a storytelling show. I’ve always loved stories (reading them, hearing them, watching them on telly) so the chance to combine my two interests seemed perfect!

Beth: I was inspired by Andrew. Not just because he’s sitting next to me. I went along to the Scottish Storytelling Centre apprenticeship days with him and got hooked on folklore.

Which other storytellers or acts influence you?

Beth: I really love what Ailie Finlay does as a storyteller – she uses multi-sensory elements in such a great way, and she’s got a lovely presence. I’ve also been really inspired by tellers like Sylvia Troon (and her amazing puppets!) and Janis Mackay.

Andrew: Andy Cannon supported a piece of work I did early on, and he really inspired me to do more storytelling – he’s got great energy, a sense of fun and I love how he interacts with the audience.

Have you performed at TradFest before? Are there any other acts on the programme you’d recommend seeing?

Beth: This is our first time at TradFest and we’re super chuffed to be involved! Being Fifers, we were both essentially raised on The Singing Kettle, so we’re really excited about Artie’s Tartan Tales – we think he’s amazing.

Andrew: I recently performed with the Burgh Blatherers so I’d recommend going to see them – a lovely, welcoming group full of great performers.

What does Tradition mean to you?

Andrew: Tradition means being exposed to a huge variety of different stories, styles and cultures, and getting the chance to celebrate it all – for me, that’s everything from The Singing Kettle to learning stories from local Syrian families, like we did for a recent project.

Beth: I love the connection tradition gives us to people living all over the world, as well as people who lived long ago – I think it’s amazing when you discover folklore that’s existed for centuries that explores the issues we still experience today.

Story Blanket is on Mon 1 May at 3pm

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