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The Telegram
  • African storyteller performs at HCCC

  • African storyteller D. Ekow King performed for students, faculty and members of the public Tuesday afternoon in Herkimer County Community College’s Alumni Hall.

    King set the scene with African inspired attire, bongos and music.

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  • African storyteller D. Ekow King performed for students, faculty and members of the public Tuesday afternoon in Herkimer County Community College’s Alumni Hall.
    King set the scene with African inspired attire, bongos and music.
    Once the mood was set he began to tell his story about an old and wise tortoise who had become thirsty after walking through the desert. In the story, the tortoise had to overcome several obstacles to quench his thirst. In the end his determination and wit helped him to enjoy a drink of water.
    “King’s performance was very entertaining and enthusiastic, and he really involved the audience,” said HCCC Professor Sally Durkee, whose storytelling class sponsored the student activities event.
    King said he began telling stories as a child and as he grew it only continued.
    “In college people would always want me to be the one to re-tell stories,” he said.
    After graduating from the University of Albany King said he became serious about story telling after he was invited to perform. Since then King has performed throughout the state.
    As a student King said he was inspired by his professor and University of Albany African Studies Department Chair, Dr. Vivian Gordon. Although she has since died King said she gave him the confidence to become a storyteller. “She opened my mind and taught me how to share stories, as well as the important lessons learned through them,” he said.
    King said he enjoys story telling and what it does for his audience.
    “When someone listens to an African story the story comes alive right before their eyes,” he said.
    King is a graduate of the University of Albany’s master of arts program in African studies and currently works as an adjunct professor in the liberal arts and science department at SUNY Cobleskill, where he teaches Introduction to African Studies. He is also director of the University of Albany Chapter of the National Coalition Building Institute International, a Washington, D.C., based organization which conducts leadership training worldwide.
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