Performances,  Publications

Tales told in tents – stories of Central Asia

Tales Told in Tents – Stories of Central Asia by Sally Pomme Clayton and Sophie Herxheimer (Frances Lincoln 2004/2006) tells little known myths and fairytales evoking mountains and steppe, the Silk Road, the important role storytellers have in nomadic societies, and why stories are more valuable than gold!

“A lovely book about the magic of stories  told from memory….Clayton shares stories, riddles, proverbs and snatches of song…” Washington Post

“These vivid reconstructions of nomad tales by a professional storyteller are beautifully illuminated by folk-like paintings, and together they give us access to some of the treasures of these lands. This is a splendid book.”Books for Keeps.

Sally Pomme Clayton has been researching Central Asian oral traditions for many years. She has created a vibrant performance based on her book, that takes audiences on an exciting and entertaining storytelling journey along the Silk Road, weaving myths and fairytales with cultural description and anecdotes of extraordinary travels. The performance shares the rich, diverse heritage of Islamic and pre-Islamic traditions of Central Asia. Pomme often brings her collection of Central Asian costumes to the performance for children to look at and even try on!

Even though the book is sadly out of print, it is still part of the National Curriculum, and many schools are still using it to explore this region of the world and Pomme visits schools and arts venues to share her magical stories! She also has a programme of Silk Road stories for adults and you can find out more here.

“Sally Pomme Clayton is a master of the oral tale. She has travelled widely and listened well. She passes on 12 stories in this collection. The exotic plots are interwoven with songs and riddles, poems, notes and nuggets of information.” Times Educational Supplement.