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The Orkney Storytelling Festival is a celebration of the oral tradition in Orkney, with tales focusing on the history and heritage of the islands.

The festival always features a wide programme, with events held in venues right across the islands. It has a truly international flavour too, welcoming local storytellers along with visitors from the likes of Scotland, Ireland, the United States, Canada and Africa.

The 2019 festival will hear stories from Mara Menzies, who was brought up in Kenya and tells the traditional stories of Africa, as well as stories of the people who shaped the continent. Her style is fast, bubbly and full of excitement. She'll be joined by Gordon MacLellan, a storyteller and poet from the Western Isles who now lives in England. He tells traditional folk tales of fairies and boggarts, who are best left alone. He is also a keen environmentalist, working under the name of Creeping Toad; nature is never far away from his stories.

It is also hoped that Robert Seven Crows, a Canadian First Nation storyteller who keeps alive the stories of his ancestors, will take part too. This is part of a project with Orkney storyteller Tom Muir that will take place in Canada, Edinburgh and Orkney.

Local storytellers Fran Flett Hollinrake, Marita Luck, Erin Farley and award winning Scottish singer Scott Gardiner will also delight the audience throughout the festival.

You can find out more about the festival and its guests and storytellers, as well as traditional storytelling in Orkney, via the Orkneyology website.

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