Stories to Tell

Theatre Professor Fanni Green is conducting workshops to help people share their personal and community-related experiences.


By Barbara Melendez

USF News


TAMPA, Fla. (July 16, 2013) – “Stories are in our DNA – since time immemorial,” observes USF Theatre Professor Fanni Green. But many stories from people with a lot of years and adventures behind them are often lost to posterity. Doing her best to help stem that loss, Green is working with three groups that will have a chance to benefit from her talent and experience with the art of telling personal stories.


Storytelling workshops, under the heading, “Remember, Write and Tell: Interweaving the Person and the Community through Storytelling and Song,” will be offered to the public through community radio station WMNF August 3 and 10. Green initiated the workshops July 8 at University Village, a senior living community in Tampa. The VA Hospital’s Voice of Recovery program will take part July 29, Aug. 5 and 19. 


“People’s stories identify them, give them a place to be from, and enrich their families and their communities as well as help them see themselves in a new light at times,” Green said.


She was inspired to create the workshops to fulfill the community engagement component of her participation in New York’s Lark Play Development Center’s “Launching New Plays into the Repertoire” project.


USF’s School of Theatre and Dance, in the College of The Arts, is one of four theaters (Perseverance Theatre, Juneau, Alaska; Los Angeles Theatre Center, California; and Pillsbury House, Minneapolis, Minnesota) that will produce the play, “the road weeps, the well runs dry,” by playwright Marcus Gardley. Green will direct the story, which tells of the co-mingling of Black Freedmen and Seminole communities in Florida.


USF will stage the production April 3 -13 in Theatre II.


The play serves as a prime example of how far a story can go, beginning with the stories Marcus first heard from his family of two peoples and two communities struggling to live as one.


“I would like to see the workshop members explore their own stories with similar depth and complexity,” Green said. “I will be sharing excerpts from ‘the road weeps’ and encouraging them to recall and write about their experiences and history of being members of varied communities.”


The WMNF workshops are free to the public and will be held at the station, 210 E Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd.


This is a return engagement for Green. She directed a live reading broadcast on WMNF of “the rocks are gonna cry out,” as part of the Studio@620 WMNF Radio Theatre Project last February.


For more information, contact Amanda Clark, marketing associate in the School of Theatre and Dance, at 813-974-9108 or at Please include “WMNF Storytelling Workshop” in the subject line.


Barbara Melendez can be reached at 813-974-4563.