Tawana Honeycomb Petty
This week I had the honor of performing a Water Love tribute story to
my Beloved Ancestor Charity Hicks for the internationally acclaimed
and award winning Secret Society Of Twisted Storytellers event
founded and hosted by Satori Shakoor. It was held at the Charles H.
Wright Museum of African American History.
As a performance poet, I went into the experience thinking it would
be a breeze. I had done some small storytelling coaching and did some
small stage performances in the past, so I figured I had all the
elements it took to make a powerful and impacting story. It wasn’t
until I had the opportunity to coach with Satori, that I realized
there was so much more to storytelling. I am truly grateful for her
coaching and the experience.
Up until the very second that I started to tell my story, I was
terrified. It was unlike any other stage performance I had done to
date. In every practice session, I would leave something out and my
story would change a bit. I would also get emotional and cry through
the end. I thought I was in trouble. How could I successfully tell my
story if I forget to include certain parts, and I get too choked up?
Fortunately, when I grabbed the mic, something wonderful happened! I
started to sort of freestyle. The elements of my story were there, so
I didn’t have to worry about remembering every line. It was my story,
and it came from my heart. So I went with the energy the audience was
giving me and I started to enjoy myself. Although, there were moments
when I was still a bit nervous and hoping to make it through.
Overall, it was an incredible experience!
Other powerful storytellers included Kalyn Risker-Fahie, Monica
Morgan, Nina Cook and The Redwines. There were brilliant performances
by Cass Tech High School dancer Jovon Jones and the Renaissance High
School String Quartet.
Check out the links below. You will find all of the heartfelt
performances, including my story in part 2.