Great Oral Storytelling Course for Beginners (Expert Review)
Would you like to learn how to tell a story? The best way to do this is to take part in a good oral storytelling course for beginners. This is my review of an online course I recommend.
The honest opinions in this review are mine. The links to the course in this review are affiliate links. When you buy this course after clicking one of my links, I get a small commission at no cost to you. Thanks!
I have been telling stories professionally for more than 10 years. In the last 5 years, I also taught storytelling to many students, mostly in 4-day courses. I know what works and what doesn’t when it comes to teaching storytelling.
Instead of making you read all the way down, let me give you my opinion on this course immediately.
The course ‘Intro to Storytelling: Wow Your Crowd’ by Kevin Allison is an excellent introduction to oral storytelling. It includes the basics of storytelling and rightly emphasizes the connection with the story above performing. It’s a great oral storytelling course for beginners.
Below I will outline how I reviewed this course, what its strong points were, and when it isn’t the course for you.
About ‘Intro to Storytelling: Wow Your Crowd’
The course ‘Intro to Storytelling: Wow Your Crowd’ is hosted on Udemy, one of the biggest international platforms for courses.
In short, the course presents itself as “A practical, step-by-step guide to brainstorming on, workshopping, and presenting oral stories.”
It consists mostly of a series of videos, a total of 3 hours long. Apart from the videos, there are also some documents included which explain the same things but in a different way.
The videos are mostly ‘talking head’ style by one teacher, Kevin Allison. He is an experienced actor, storyteller, and podcaster.
I bought and completed this course myself
I don’t recommend what I don’t know.
While I am a big fan of offline courses, I can see the merit of online courses. They can give you a kickstart and inspiration enough to actually start telling your own stories.
For quite some time I have been looking at online courses about oral storytelling. I find that most of the courses about storytelling are actually not about the old art and craft of oral storytelling.
Furthermore, a lot of courses are simply not good enough. Either they lack depth because the teacher lacks experience with telling stories or because the teacher is not very good at teaching.
This course had very good reviews and I decided to buy it. While watching the videos I found myself smiling and silently saying ‘Yes, yes, yes.’
A couple of days later, I finished the course. I even got a certificate! 🙂
What I liked about this oral storytelling course
First of all, I like the practical way this course is organized. Pretty early in the course, there is a lesson designed to help you find your own stories. Followed by a lesson to go and tell one to a friend or a recording device.
Second, Kevin Allison rightly puts emphasis on the emotional connection with the story. An oral story is not built word by word, or sentence by sentence, but scene by scene. He explains how to make these scenes or images multisensory so your listeners will experience them by themselves.
Third, I think it is very helpful to watch the five examples of different storytellers telling a story included in this course. While listening you find yourself thinking about what has been taught before.
What could be better in this course?
Most people learn how to tell stories in one of two ways. They either start by telling fictional stories, often old ones like fairy tales, folktales, ghost stories, etc. Or they start by telling true life stories that they experienced themselves.
This course is about learning to tell your own, big and small, stories. The principles being taught are equally valid for telling fictional stories, though.
However, if you are looking for a course on how to tell fictional stories, this course might not be what you are looking for.
Another way in which this course could be better has to do with the five people that tell a story. The course instructor, Kevin, gives them feedback after their telling. He tells them what he liked, but I miss some obvious suggestions on how to make their stories better.
I am quite sure he did this on purpose, but as a student of his course, I missed his expert tips.
What do others say about this storytelling course?
More than 9000 people took this course and on average they give it 4,7 stars out of 5. That’s an amazing score.
I like that this went through all the basics, and gave some amazing examples for the story telling structure. I gave me a better way to test, and focus the stories I want to try out. Kevin has a great personality!Rena M (source: course website)
This course was a little more expensive than the other similar courses; it was also shorter in comparison. I thought this instructor better deliver value, and at least this will be one course I will finish early. Well, the course is highly valuable, and the instructor is amazing. I highly recommend it to everyone who has to tell good stories.Dr. Mayurika D. (source: course website)
Looking for something else?
You might be reading this review and wondering whether this course about storytelling will help you in business.
I think it will because storytelling is a skill you can use everywhere. However, you might want to check out the ‘Storytelling for Business’ course by the same teacher. I have not taken that course, so I can’t vouch for it.
If you don’t like video and reading from a screen, but prefer a solid book, there is no book about oral storytelling that can compare to ‘The Storyteller’s Way’.
I discuss this book at length in my blog post about the best books on storytelling.
As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I get a little percentage whenever you buy something after clicking one of my affiliate links. Thanks!
I hope I have helped you on your journey in storytelling with this review. Happy storytelling!
Photo credits: Udemy
💡 Occasionally, I send out an email with new writings on storytelling and fairy tales.