Wednesday, February 25, 2009

National Professional Storyteller Brings Live, Literacy-Building Performance to Maryvale-Area (Arizona) School

Press Release Immediate Release

National Professional Storyteller Brings Live, Literacy-Building Performance to Maryvale-Area School on Friday, February 27, 2009.

Avondale Arizona- As part of the literacy program of "Read Across America," the students at Lela Alston Elementary School in the Maryvale area of the West Valley will be treated to a presentation by national professional storyteller K. Sean Buvala on Friday, February 27, 2009 at 11:00 in the morning. The school is located at 4006 West Osborn Road in Phoenix.

As a presenter for the school's "Read Across America Program," Sean Buvala will use oral storytelling to entice the students to explore the many great books in the libraries in their neighborhoods and school. Mr. Buvala is donating the performance to the low-income school.

"As a storyteller, I don't actually read books to students," Mr. Buvala said. "Rather, through the use of the oral tradition, my stories excite kids to jump up and go directly to the 398.2 section of the library to find many of the stories I've told them. Often, at the end of my programs, I will tell students just the first half of a story. After the final applause, it never fails that students will immediately go to the bookshelves to find the final portion of the story. I have even seen a few teachers peruse the library or the classroom Internet to find the story themselves."

Research indicates that teaching children to create and communicate with oral storytelling improves reading and writing skills and test scores. Buvala stated, "Oral storytelling not only encourages kids to use their imaginations but helps with other skills such as sequencing and vocabulary development. Principals have told me that adding storytelling and other performing arts increases the overall test scores of the students. Over the last several decades, I have been honored to help bring the power of story to so many schools and certainly am glad to help Alston school achieve their goals as well."

Sean Buvala, the director of with more than two decades of national experience, is especially glad to help schools in his home state of Arizona. "I travel frequently to teach in a variety of corporate and school settings. It is always an honor and even fun to do things here in my own hometown. Most recently, I did a tour of the Washington school district here and that was a very unique opportunity to be involved in my own community."

Mr. Buvala, who also teaches corporate storytelling workshops in Avondale, Arizona, can be reached at his website at For more information about the Lela Alston Elementary school, please contact their office at (602) 442-3000.

Contact Information
K. Sean Buvala
(623) 298-4548


The official blog for K. Sean Buvala, storyteller and storytelling coach.

Press Release: "Bobby Jindal's Response Speech Demonstrates Business Storytelling Do's and Don'ts." says National Storytelling Expert.

Press Release
For Immediate Release

Avondale, AZ- National storytelling expert and speaking coach, K. Sean Buvala, reviews Bobby Jindal's "Republican Response" speech and offers four public-speaking tips gleaned from the Governor's presentation.

Buvala, the director of the national storytelling resource site at, says, "Regardless of anyone's political preferences, the Governor's speech illustrates that stories and storytelling can be used in any type of important speech. As a corporate storyteller, I was happy to see yet another national figure make use of story in their presentation. I also think that any person using stories can learn four things from Mr. Jindal's speech."

Use intentional hand gestures. Buvala says, "The Governor uses frequent, choppy hand gestures that are synchronous with the syllables of the words he speaks. It looks as if he is conducting an orchestra or cutting onions to the rhythm of his words. Speakers should plan the gestures that they will use with their stories. These intentional movements can then enhance the stories being told instead of being a distraction."

Be careful when using "Me too" stories. Mr. Buvala continues, "While I appreciate and respect the Governor's family story of struggling immigrants, his narrative immediately following his comments regarding the president's family history both lessens and distracts from the power of the Governor's background story. In order to seem less like a 'me too' attempt at connection, the story might have served better at the end of the story. While it is a good thing that the Governor used stories, the placement of those stories must be carefully considered. "

Use tone and pacing appropriate for your audience. Buvala notes that, "Bobby Jindal's pacing, tone and inflection during his speech reminded me of a school teacher giving a motivational speech to young children rather than a thoughtful reaction intended for thinking adults. The constant head nodding, the sharp intake of breath between sentences and the higher pitch of his speaking took power away from his stories, perhaps making his narratives sound childish. I'd suggest that the Governor concentrate on slowing his pace, intentionally speak with a lower pitch and allow himself to breath deeply by using longer pauses more often.

Use stories to "frame" your presentation. "Finally," says Sean Buvala, "although Mr. Jindal's family history story might have been better placed in the speech, he does refer back to his opening story at the end of his presentation, when speaking again of his father's words. This process, called 'framing,' reminds the listeners of the central point of a talk, giving them a virtual 'frame' in which to see the ideas painted with the speaker's words."

Buvala, who teaches monthly public workshops for business storytelling, knows that stories used in national conversations help unify listening audiences. "Governor Jindal's use of personal stories allows the audience to understand the speaker as a human being rather than just a 'talking head' for an ideology."

For more information about group or private coaching in the art of storytelling for corporate or business use, please contact Sean Buvala via his website at

Contact Information:

K. Sean Buvala
(623) 298-4548

PO Box 392
Tolleson AZ 85353

"EXPERT CONSULTANT for the Press, Television and Radio"
Storytelling (both traditional and digital), performing artists, public speaking, corporate training, business coaching, non-profit organizations.

Promotional photos of Sean Buvala are available for download at:


The official blog for K. Sean Buvala, storyteller and storytelling coach.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Newest "Storytelling in Business" Podcast

Our next edition of the “Storytelling and Narrative for Business Podcast” is now available. This time around, we respond to a listener's email asking about the use of jokes, anecdotes and stories. Sean discusses the differences between each of these items as well as tells you the story of "Just Enough." Sponsored by and presented by

Please send your questions and comments to and be sure to put "podcast comments" in the subject line.

Click below to listen in!

Storytelling In Business Podcast #3

Find previous podcasts in this series at this address:

The official blog for K. Sean Buvala, storyteller and storytelling coach.