Community NARRATIVES

Sharing our stories. Strengthening our communities.

What are Community Narratives?

“To be a storyteller is to recognize, break apart, and critically reshape the stories of our communities and our world.” - Tsering Lama, Storytelling Advisor, Greenpeace International

Window Seat partners with communities to facilitate community oral history and storytelling projects or "community narratives" in the South Sound. Sometimes, we initiate a project with the guidance of a team of advisors and collaborators. Other times, our projects grow from a community, organization, or group of people who want to further a shared goal or vision for the future and Window Seat serves as a "story midwife," convener, or facilitator.

We are so grateful for the many relationships we have developed with multimedia storytellers, artists, academics, community organizers, and community organizations. Together, we've convened conversations, created opportunities to glean wisdom from the lived experience of our neighbors, colleagues, family members, and friends. We've shared skills and tools through community workshops and storytelling. Check out the some community narrative highlights below!


Past & Current Projects

Community Storytelling Circles

For this monthly event series, we partner with local artists, activists, and groups in the community to highlight their work and engage in community dialogue inspired by their stories. Featured stories come in many mediums including live performances, short audio stories, poems, podcasts, or other media pieces. Each storytelling circle explores a central question or theme that connects to the featured story. After listening to the storyteller, participants have the opportunity to reflect and share their own stories in facilitated large and small group conversations.

The Third Thirty

The Third Thirty is a community oral history project that invites South Sound elders to reflect on their lives in relation to a moment in time or an event, a question or theme. The project began in 2018 as a community-based learning experience offered in partnership with Senior Services of South Sound Lifelong Learning Program. Participants learned the art and practice of oral history, built their listening and interviewing skills, and considered the ethical issues of gathering and sharing other peoples’ stories. They invited someone they admired to participate in an interview and then we shared edited versions of those interviewed at public readings at the end of the course. The Third Thirty has since evolved into a dynamic community-driven storytelling project that involves many creative collaborators and partners.

Contact elaine@windowseatmedia.org if you are interested in participating or collaborating.

Brave Practice Playback Theatre Collective

We are a collective of theatre artists in the South Sound who use Playback Theatre to foster connection and belonging in our local community. We aim to be a community resource for storytelling, community dialogue, and social change. Playback Theatre is an original form of interactive and improvisational theatre where people tell true stories from their lives and others enact them on the spot using music, dialogue, metaphor, and movement. Contact Community Weaver, Meg Rosenberg, meg@windowseatmedia.org, to invite Brave Practice for a workshop or performance with your organization.

A community engagement program of Window Seat Media. Brave Practice Collective Members (L to R) Hiroko, Susana, Laurie, and Meg

InhaleExhale

InhaleExhale is a multimedia, multidisciplinary conversation series about death and dying curated by Window Seat Media in collaboration with local artists, organizations, and groups.

InhaleExhale conversation series began in the fall of 2019 and is currently on pause. Check back for details or contact elaine@windowseatmedia.org.

Voices from the Harbor

Relationships, networks, memory, storytelling - all contribute to what makes a community work. The primary goal of Voices from the Harbor was to put the Grays Harbor region’s history to work as a community development tool. Some of the project’s core assumptions are that, if you know what to look for, a walk down the street can reveal the history of a community, a neighbor’s memory can provide insight into the lessons and experiences of a generation of citizens. By creating a space for community conversations about the evolution of the Harbor, we hope to add critical perspective to development efforts intended to solve contemporary issues like affordable housing and homelessness.

The Voices from the Harbor event series was co-produced by Window Seat Media and The Evergreen State College and was funded by Humanities Washington. It took place in 2017 in Grays Harbor County.

Preserving Working Farms

We offer multimedia storytelling services to help organizations raise awareness and funds. This collection of stories we produced (between 2015-2017) with organizations that are working to preserve working farmland and educate eaters about the challenges farmers face when producing food for local markets.

We are available to support your storytelling needs. Contact us at hello@windowseatmedia.org