Becoming a Storyteller: Example 3

How I do opening scenes of Monkey Steals the Drum Story.

In the beginning of time, before there was humankind, all the animals used to come together to dance. Now, they had no instruments, so they made music by raising their voices high. Up into the sky, until at last, with the rising sun, the animals would disappear, one by one by one, until only Ajaniku, the great Leopard King, was left.

One day Ajaniku, he had killed a fine, fat bush buck and was eating out its flesh. He threw the skin away, and, under the hot African sun, that skin landed on a stump and dried tight, tight as a drum. And when Ajaniku, he went to wipe his whiskers off, why, boom, ooooh! boom-boom! Aaaah! Be Bee Boom ba Boom! He began to dance and play. And far away, all the other animals heard the noise, and they came running to see, and when they saw the drum they wanted one!

So, they went into the bush and from their behind took a piece of skin (owhoo hoo hooo hoo) and then they stretched that skin tight across a hoop of wood and made a drum they could play.

Now, far away, Monkey, he heard the noise. And he came running to see. And when he saw their drums, he wanted one. But, when he went into the bush to take a piece of skin, he thought, "I'm such a little thing. If I take anything off of me, there won't be anything left. I better steal a drum instead."

And, so, Monkey waited for all the animals to go to bed; then, into the camp he did creep to where Ajaniku, the Leopard King, lay asleep. And Monkey stole the drum away.

Back to Becoming a Storyteller