Widow of Ephesus

One of the great satires on marital fidelity

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Of course, storytellers always worry about choosing the right sort of story for an audience (and so, clearly, does Jürgen, who manages the halbNeun Theater in Darmstadt).

I originally heard the tale told in Swedish by Monika Eriksson at the Ljungby Storytelling Festival (thanks, Monika, for helping with a translation in the interval).
Later I found it in Satyricon (1st century CE) by Petronius.

The recording was made in Dec. 2018 at the halbNeun Theater, every year one of my favourite gigs.

Richard Marsh, Dublin-based mainstay of Storytell listserv (that incomprable source of storytelling information) sent me the following:
A literary protégée of Jonathan Swift, William Dunkin, wrote a version of The Widow of Ephesus, in which Swift and his servant Jack argue about the constancy of women. They see a widow grieving at her just-deceased husband’s grave. Jack, to prove his point that women are unfaithful, proposes to her, saying that his chaplain is in the coach and can marry them immediately. She accepts.
Swift’s servant’s real name was Alexander Magee, but Swift called him “Saunders”, his generic name for a succession of servants.


The video clips here are all amateur quality, shot in various theatres.

Their intention is just to show the range of my storytelling and give a flavour of a live performance.

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The videos are © Richard Martin.

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For those who are teachers: Telling stories in the classroom: basing language teaching on storytelling