Tuesday, 26 May 2020

‘Watts Gallery Bedtime Stories’ by Olivia Armstrong, review by Lynda Waterhouse

Following a postal glitch I am unable to review a ‘paper book’, so I’m seizing this opportunity to share with you ‘The Magical and Magnificent Pattle Sisters’, a story written and performed by Olivia Armstrong as part of a series called ‘Watts Gallery Bedtime Stories’.

This story has all the classic ingredients of a good bedtime story. Instead of a picture book we have a wonderful painting by GF Watts to look at and Olivia’s soothing voice. She also takes us on a wonderful journey and encourages us to step into the painting and to dream. It also makes me long for an afternoon tea of strawberries and cream!
Hearing this story also makes me want to visit The Watts Gallery which is located in Surrey. Founded in 1904 as the only gallery in the UK devoted to a single artist, Watts Gallery and Artists' Village offers a unique insight into the life and work of 'England's Michelangelo', G F Watts, and his wife, the designer and artist Mary Watts. The Artists' Village carries on the Watts' legacy of 'Art for All' with its historic and contemporary galleries, working Artist in Residence and conservation studios, and an extensive learning programme.

Olivia has been telling stories all her life and professionally for over fourteen years. She has an extensive repertoire of traditional folk tales and historical stories. She is also frequently commissioned to devise and perform site specific original stories. Like all mistresses of their craft, Olivia makes the telling of a gripping story appear effortless. Last year, I listened to her tell a story about the life of the young Leonardo Da Vinci to an equally spellbound group including people from nine months to ninety years.

Check out Olivia’s website for further details.


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