A WEEK FROM TODAY, A NEW WORK IS BORN: Danika the Rose

A WOMAN’S CREATIVE IDEA

As a noted opera and chamber music singer, Jazimina MacNeil already had Dvorak’s Moravian Duets for women’s voices. Born of 19th Century Europe, the duets sang of landlords, vineyards, lost love and agrarian life, all accompanied by piano, and all sung in Czech, Dvorak’s native language. What MacNeil didn’t have was a vehicle, a way to feature the duets more often in concert performances.

She realized she needed a story and a storyteller.

A TWO-YEAR COLLABORATION

Odds Bodkin was performing in Concord, MA when MacNeil introduced herself and her idea. It struck him as a good one, so she sent him a recording of 23 Moravian Duets with printed lyrics in Czech and English. After a listen, he got back to her, “I think there’s a story in here, but to create it, I’ll have to change the established order of the duets,” he said, wondering if this might be a sacred cow in the soprano business. “Go ahead,” she said. Delighted with the reply, he entered the smithy of my soul, as James Joyce called the writing process, and started hammering away at a new adult fairy tale.

Two years later, the result is the premiere of Danika the Rose, a tale that feels ancient, but with a very modern edge. On the surface, it’s the story of a young peasant girl and a duke who is obsessed with her beauty. But Danika also delves into hidden communications with animals, the fraught relationship between loving them and eating them, and how ecological systems, once out of balance, can cascade into disaster.

That, and how even in a world of magic, a love triangle can explode into jealous darkness.

A NEW WORK FOR THE CLASSICAL CANON

Sung by MacNeil and Sarah Shafer, those Moravian Duets, now in their new order in a fresh score crafted by MacNeil, comment upon and emotionally deepen the tale. Even so, on their own, the songs are lively, sonorous and beautiful–the power of a great symphonic melodist, condensed into brief pieces.

Have the singer and the storyteller created a new classic?

Come answer that question for yourself on Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019 at 4 pm in Bass Hall, Peterborough, NH. An ElectricEarthConcerts presentation.

Called “a consummate storyteller” by The New York Times, Bodkin will narrate and create characters and sounds during the performance, while Jazimina MacNeil and Sarah Shafer sing Dvorak’s glorious songs in Czech. Emely Phelps accompanies on piano.

TICKETS $30

 

Teacher Reports that Odds Bodkin Stories Used in New Online Lab Support Core Standards

Story Preservation Initiative, or SPI, has launched something new. The organization, renowned for its interviews with famous people–interviews that older students can access online–has added something new for younger students, K-3.

Odds Bodkin stories on audio with full curriculum follow-up. Stories that support core standards. Visit here.

Here’s a fall 2019 teacher review:

“There are five wonderfully told stories along with PDF multifaceted lesson plans.  The stories are engaging and Odds Bodkin has amazing effects to bring each to life.  The fables are definitely geared to celebrating our natural world.  The Evergreens, for example is a fable about deciduous versus evergreen trees and about why they loose their leaves.  The lesson plans give you multiple ways to tie the books into different core standards.”

If you are a K-3 teacher, or know one, please share this information. There are five Odds Bodkin stories available in this exciting new program.

 

MAGIC IN THE BACK SEAT

It’s not too often that parents in the front seat listen to their kids’ media in the back.

So if it’s “raining tacos” in your car and that’s driving you crazy, consider The Little Proto Trilogy, three feature-length dinosaur stories by Odds Bodkin. Good for ages four and up. They’re audios, but so full of sound and action they feel like movies. Great adventures. Solid life lessons. Lots of laughs. Even songs to sing.

 

Download your Little Proto Trilogy today!

 

FABLE, FAIRY TALE, MYTH: A Family Concert at the Gazebo

This coming Wednesday evening at 6 pm in Candia, New Hampshire I’ll be telling The Boys and the Frogs, an Aesop’s fable on Celtic harp, The Little Shepherd, an Italian fairy tale on 12-string guitar, and Finn MacCool and the Big Man, a myth of sorts (it’s funny) on a second 12-string guitar.

A fun show for the entire family at Smyth Public Library.

FREE TO THE PUBLIC!

Bring blankets or folding chairs and I’ll see you there!

 

Once a Kid, Now an Uncle: Lifelong Memories of Odds Bodkin Stories

“My sister and I grew up listening to your stories, and now I have the honor of continuing the tradition by giving these to her son on his very first birthday. She’s going to be so surprised and happy! Thank you for giving us lifelong memories that we’ll keep in the family for generations to come.”

So writes Jarvis Karel of Dallas, Texas in the comments box for a download order this week at Odds Bodkin’s Shop. Sweet music to a storyteller’s ears. I don’t know Jarvis personally, but thank you, Jarvis.

Story downloads and thumb drives at Odds Bodkin’s Shop.

 

12-STRING GUITAR MOTIFS for Fall of the Titans

 

I’ve had a wonderful run of well-attended shows at Grendel’s Den on Harvard Square this winter and want to thank Kari Kuelzer, Charlie Gargano, Joe Froeber and the great staff at Grendel’s for making all the evenings run so smoothly.

Everybody’s having a good time.

This season’s last show is Sunday night, March 31 at 6 p.m.

FALL OF THE TITANS

TICKETS $15

45% Off Odds Bodkin Storytelling Drives Now through December 10!

Save today on the magical storytelling of Odds Bodkin, all on a flash drive. Voices. Original music. Amazing vocal effects. Classic tales. Award-winning titles.

 

The Beginner Drive $39.95

9 full-length storytelling albums for kids ages 4-7. Includes three movie-length Little Proto dinosaur adventures with songs. Explore here.

 

The Epic Drive $99.95

19 full-length storytelling albums for all ages. Includes The Odyssey, Beowulf Live, David and Goliath and many others. Explore here.

Special bonus: For Odyssey listeners, an autographed Odyssey Adventure Map with all 42 of Odysseus’s adventures across the Mediterranean world.

 

The Master Drive $149.95

Odds Bodkin’s Complete Works. 19 full-length storytelling albums for all ages plus 7 original music compositions and Odds’ 13,000-line epic high fantasy poem, The Water Mage’s Daughter. Explore here.

Special bonus: For Odyssey listeners, an autographed Odyssey Adventure Map with all 42 of Odysseus’s adventures across the Mediterranean world.

Odds Bodkin Gift Ideas: One Story Drive For Three Generations

“a one-man vocal universe”–TimeOut New York

“one of the great voices in American storytelling”–Wired

Hours of myths, legends, original tales, epics and music, all on a single flash drive.

 

Stories for young kids, older kids, teens, parents, even grandparents.

Odds Bodkin audio tales are award-winning classics that have won Parents’ Choice, Indie, Storytelling World and other national awards.

Get yours today!

 

Storytelling Collections for Families

 

LIKE A BOX FULL OF CD’S IN EVERY ONE!

CLICK AN IMAGE FOR ALBUM TITLES

 

“a modern-day Orpheus”–Billboard Magazine

“one of the great voices in American storytelling”–Wired

 

Do Silicon Valley Execs Keep Their Kids Away From Screens? Yes.

Why do Silicon Valley executives raise their children technology-free? This headline from The Guardian says it all: TABLETS OUT, IMAGINATION IN: THE SCHOOLS THAT SHUN TECHNOLOGY.

They do it because they want their kids to be imaginative and mentally healthy, basically. Looking out over the wasteland of anger, narcissism, teen suicides, obesity and incivility that social media networks have caused in young lives recently, many of these tech wizards are scared for their own kids.

Like King Midas, everything they touched has turned to gold. But don’t forget the old story: When King Midas touches his own daughter, whom he loves, she turns to gold, too. That’s the end of her.

Digital Addiction begins with kids interacting with screens. The colorful, always-changing worlds they find are so much fun that when they’re suddenly without their screens and look up to see the real world around them, it simply moves too slowly. It’s boring. This causes a kind of free-floating, stimulation-seeking depression.

Down through the ages, kids engaged in creative play with toys and role-playing, attempting to do what grownups did, but in miniature. It has always been this way. But not now, not in the dopamine-laden world of video games and social networks. Not unless the kids’ lives are balanced by getting them away from these devices.

It’s ironic. Now that the digital masters of the universe are having families, too, they realize this, smart as they are. Heck, they built these things to be addictive. And yes, they love their kids, too.

So what is the indispensable skill they want their children to develop at these very expensive, very selective kindergartens and elementary schools where less is more?

Imagination.

What grows imagination best?

Creative outdoor play, kids playing with kids, without any adults around.

If that’s not possible, what’s the next best thing?

Storytelling.

As Einstein said, “If you want your child to be intelligent, read them fairy tales.”

Wait a moment, you might say. Odds Bodkin is using digital media at the moment. Isn’t that a bit hypocritical?

Well, no.

That’s because my imagination developed long ago, when I was a kid, playing outside all day, and then, after coming back home, listening to my dad tell me stories.


BUSINESS INSIDER article for more

 

 

 

 

 

FLASH DRIVES of Odds Bodkin Story Collections Make Great Gifts

If you’re going to an Odds Bodkin show this season, consider leaving with an EPIC DRIVE, a BEGINNER DRIVE or a MASTER DRIVE. Credit cards accepted via Square.com.

Or purchase yours at Odds Bodkin’s Shop.

Downloads of all recordings available too!