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Kathrin the storyteller

She is the only special effect they get, but one that they will never forget.

Let me tell you a story about a shy little girl who dreamed of becoming an actress but became something different, something else. Today she is on stage performing for the most energetic audiences, and she loves it.

As a little girl Kathrin Sonza Reorda always dreamed of becoming a famous actress. But although she loved being on the stage, she was very shy and decided to let go of her dream. Instead she ended up doing social studies and working with children, which was also very close to her heart.

“But about 10 years ago I realized I needed more adventure in my life. I wanted to get back up on that stage and started hunting my childhood dream in a new way”, Kathrin says.

That’s when she started training to become a professional storyteller. But hold on, what does a storyteller actually do?

“There are many possibilities. Dressed in line with the story I am telling I perform in front of different audiences. It can be at schools, birthday parties, companies or festivals. The real peak of the year is around Christmas – a time of the year when people usually enjoy listening to stories even more,” explains Kathrin.

She doesn’t write the stories herself, but picks different story tales and folk tales that she particularly likes. The storytelling include both talking, singing and acting. The audience can consist of anything from 3 year olds to 80 year olds and the amount of people attending varies from 20 to 200.

“But whatever the age or size of the audience, the connection with them is extremely important. It fills me with so much energy and happiness when I see how much they love the stories I tell, and that it really affects them,” says Kathrin.

“I am the only special effect they get. That’s why I always include movement games and songs for the children to be part of. After that they can concentrate more again. With today’s iPads and computer games I think it’s actually healthy for the kids to be still and present for a while, listening to stories.”

Timing is really important, as she wants the storytelling to be intense she is always waiting for the right moment. She uses a lot of humor, but also sensitive emotions. And there is always a bigger meaning hidden.

“The stories I tell show that life is not always easy, but that everything works out in the end. I like to encourage the audience to always go after what they want in life, and show that it’s ok to be weak sometimes.”

One of the stories she tell is about a son of a king who is accursed and get donkey ears. He struggles a lot but shows in the end that he can still become a king, a good king even. When he admits his weakness the donkey ears disappear.

“When I tell this story people are always touched and sometimes have tears in their eyes. It shows you can get through hard things and find a solution.”

When she is not telling stories Kathrin is also a children’s theatre actress. She do it together with a friend and they have written the play themselves.

“It is about a fairy and a fluffy monster who are best friends and loves going on adventures together. The kids love it”, tells Kathrin.

Having these hobbies outside of her work at Getinge’s office in Rastatt, Germany, gives her great balance in life. But is the stage fright gone?

“It’s still there! I am always recklessly nervous before a gig, but as soon as I start telling stories or acting it disappears and I am enjoying myself. People often ask if I am an actress like I wanted to be when I was a child. I tell them no, better up, I am a storyteller.”

 Read more about Kathrin on her website