About Wendy Shearer

Professional Storyteller

Wendy Shearer performing at the Bradford Literature FestivalI’m a Professional Storyteller and Writer, based in London.  I tell folktales, myths and traditional tales to children and adults.  My style of storytelling is very participatory where I encourage all ages (from babies upwards) to get involved with bringing the stories to life.  Sharing stories and folklore is a wonderful social activity where those listening can imagine each image created by the teller who breathes life into word.  I’m an active member of the Society for Storytelling, supporting and promoting the ancient oral tradition of storytelling. 

Author

I’m incredibly excited to announce that I have two new books which will be published in 2021! I am writing a book about Caribbean Folktales which will be published by The History Press. It is a collection of stories from the Caribbean island countries and first-hand reminiscences of migration to the UK from these islands during the Windrush years.  They are reflections on how they felt at leaving their home, country, and friends.  I’ve also captured their aspirations for the new home to be – England; the ‘Mother Country’. I’m writing these wonderful memories in the first person to capture their voices alongside the Caribbean characters, traditions, and landscape in the folktales I have retold and adapted.

I am also writing a book about African and Caribbean, Folktales, Myths, and Legends for children.  This will be published by Scholastic.  Find out how I chose the stories for this collection. Keep up with all my progress in my blog.

International Storytelling

In 2019, I spent a month in Colombia and Ecuador on a storytelling tour with Dream On Productions.  It was a brilliant opportunity for me to experience storytelling that is a deeply valued part of Latin American culture. We visited many International Schools where students took part in my storytelling sessions and teachers took part in my storytelling workshops to teach them storytelling techniques that they can use in their classrooms. It was an amazing cultural and language exchange which allowed me to experience what a powerful social activity oral storytelling is for anyone learning another language. You can read about my time spent in Bogotá and Quito from my blog.

The stories I tell

I have a large repertoire of tales including stories that span the curriculum, cover themes or a particular period in time to suit your event.  Here are some examples of the stories I tell. My specialist areas are:

  • Afro-Caribbean folktales inspired by my heritage and a childhood filled with written and oral stories passed down from my Grandmother;
  • Ancient Greek myths, inspired by my first degree in Classics and a passion for The Odyssey and The Iliad which began at school. 

My background..

is in researching, writing and producing programmes for Nickelodeon USA on Nick News and BBC Education with GCSE Bitesize; before spending several years at CBBC  as a BBC Children’s interactive and live television Producer working on shows including  BAFTA award winning children’s programme SMILEDick & Dom in da Bungalow and Blue Peter.

After leaving broadcasting and children’s TV, I led multidisciplinary teams across online, mobile, apps, social media and gaming for world renowned charities ‘Media Trust‘ and ‘Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew’.

Where I tell stories

Here’s a partial list of who books me for storytelling:

Theatres & Festivals: Shakespeare’s Globe, Rich Mix, Chicken Shed Theatre, Southbank Centre, Royal Academy of Arts, Greenwich Book Festival, Night of Festivals, Film Africa, Africa Writes

Museums & Heritage: The British Museum, The Science Museum Tower Bridge, The Florence Nightingale Museum, Museum of London

Schools and Nurseries:
Abbotsbury Primary
Albion Primary
Alexandra Primary
Ashmount Primary
Balgowan
Beecroft Garden
Blessed Sacrament RC
Brokholeswood Primary
Campsbourne
Camelot Primary
Casa Dei Bambini Montessori
Cedars Primary
Charles Warren Academy
Chesterton Primary
Christchurch Primary
Coconut Nursery
Derwentwater Primary
Duncombe Primary
Dwight London
Edward Wilson Primary
Eliot Bank
Falconhurst School
Faringdon Infants
Fishwick Primary
Francis de Sales
Freezy Water
Fryent Primary
Gainsborough Primary
Griffin Primary
Halley Primary
Hatcham Temple Grove
Harris Primary Academy
Harris Primary Academy Benson
Harry Gosling Primary
Hayes Park
Heathmere Primary
Highgate Primary
International School of London
John Burns Primary
John Chiltern School
Keep Hatch Primary
Keyworth Primary
King Athelstan Primary
King Solomon Academy Primary
Leopold Gwenneth Rickus Primary
Langland Community
Lessons Primary
Linden Lodge
Little Angels Pre-School
Locks Heath Infants
Long Lane Primary
Manor House
Marlborough School
Mary Magdalene C of E
Maypole Primary
Mayville Primary
Mill Head Primary
Millennium Primary
Mitchel Brook Primary
Morden Mount Primary
Moreland Primary
Morningside Primary
Mopeth School
Oakington Primary
Orion Primary
Osmani Primary School
Robin Hood Infants
Ruislip Gardens Primary
Sacred Heart College
Sheringdale School
St Aidan’s VC Primary
St Augustine’s Priory
St Clement & St James CE Primary
St Edward’s Catholic Primary
St Joseph’s R C Primary
St Mary’s C of E Primary
St Mary Cray Primary
St Paul’s Cray C of E Primary
St Saviour’s C of E Primary
St Stephen’s C of E Primary School (Twickenham)
St Stephen’s C of E Primary School (Shepherd’s Bush)
St Patrick’s Primary
St Winefried’s Catholic Primary
Stamford Hill
Streatham Wells Primary
Summerside Primary
Surrey Square Primary
Swaminarayan School
Sydenham High School
The Charter School
Thomas’s London Day School
Tidemill Academy
Vicarage Primary
West Green Primary
Willow’s Children’ Centre
Woodmansterne School
Woodside Academy

Grew up….

in South East London, telling tales, writing stories and performing on stage from an early age.  My parents are from Guyana and my Grandmother frequently shared with me Guyanese folklore.  Amoung others, this included a mixture of African, Dutch, Chinese, Amerindian and Portuguese stories that had been brought to Guyana, the ‘City of Gold’.  Tales of ‘Anansi‘, ‘Ole Higue’ and ‘Baccoo’ were brought to life for me with her vivid descriptions and warnings before bedtime “be good child otherwise the jumbee gon ketch you”.

Studied…

  • Classical Civilisation & Drama at Surrey University, receiving my combined BA (Hons) after 3 years of  ancient Greek theatre, philosophy, literature & art; acting and television production.
  • Film & Television Studies at Westminster University (MA) which included in-depth studies of world cinema and women in film.
  • Performance storytelling and storytelling for communities (on a continuing basis as part of my training and development).