Story, storying and storytelling: A reflection on documentary film, music and theatre as creative arts research practice

Tordzro, Gameli Kodzo (2018) Story, storying and storytelling: A reflection on documentary film, music and theatre as creative arts research practice. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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‘Story’ lifts and carries ‘Voice’ with which we can express what we sense.
This thesis is an Autoethnographic reflection that charts theoretical and methodological reasons for ‘harnessing’ my (Gameli Tordzro) Aŋlɔ-Eʋe story, storying and storytelling practices in the making of the film ‘Music Across Borders’, the ‘Ha Orchestra Music Project’ and the ‘Broken World, Broken Word’ devised theatre project. It also covers how this is also established in my participating in and contributing to the development, and production of ‘Vessels 2015’ and ‘Last Dream (On Earth) theatre productions as artistic research. The productions focus on story, expressing the lived experience, and how the value, knowledge, opinion, belief, and culture, within such expression represent ‘voice’. ‘Story’ is how we package and present the lived experience. Thus, ‘story’ and ‘voice’ are linked.
I assume a subjective stance and a position within the research as an Aŋlɔ-Eʋe multi-genre storyteller and present my understanding of methods and processes of music-making, film-making and theatre-making in a Ghanaian and an Afro-Scot (and New Scot) diaspora context. I re-activate the idea of decolonization - reclaiming, carrying and lifting ‘voice’ - through storytelling on screen, on stage and in music. It is accepted for ethnographers to be positioned within their text; Patricia Leavy, (Leavy, 2015), and David Inglis with Christopher Thorpe, (Inglis and Thorpe, 2012) describe ways in which people perceive and act upon their social world in the constant process of achieving their sense of reality as social actors. Barrett (Barrett and Bolt, 2007) also draw on materialist Martin Heidegger’s notion of “handleability” to argue that artistic research demonstrates how knowledge is derived from doing and from the senses. I explore Aŋlɔ-Eʋe ways of sense making through story.
This artistic inquiry takes the form of the practical making, producing and reflecting on music, film and theatre drawing on Aŋlɔ-Eʋe storytelling traditions. It is an artistic Autoethnographic research, it is generative of material arts, social interaction and transformation on the levels of the individual, the community and cultural capital. This thesis is to be read in conjunction with and as a follow-up to the portfolio of productions attached as the main part of the research.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information: This PhD research and the thesis is attached to the AHRC Large GRANT ‘Researching Multilingually’. It is a practice led arts thesis for which the primary material is a portfolio of films, and musical compositions in the Anlo Ewe tradition. The thesis is thus a commentary of academic reflection and accompanies the arts/performance work. This is in accordance with the requirements of the AHRC grant award.
Keywords: Story, storying, storytelling, film, music, theatre, aŋlɔ-eʋe, artistic research.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
L Education > L Education (General)
N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > School of Education > Creativity Culture and Faith
Funder's Name: Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Supervisor's Name: Phipps, Professor Alison and Andrew, Dr. Smith
Date of Award: 2018
Depositing User: Mr Gameli Tordzro
Unique ID: glathesis:2018-8941
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 10 Sep 2018 15:17
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2019 12:24
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