Oni Lasana ~The Storyteller

Winner of New Jersey Storytelling Story Slam 2016

In 2016, Oni Lasana came in 1st place in the Story Slam at the 24th Annual New Jersey Storytelling Festival at Grounds For Sculpture, Hamilton, New Jersey

"Oni, you rose the bar!"....Denise McCormack, president of Patchwork, A Storytelling Guild (right of Oni with runner ups)

Keepers Of The Culture, Inc.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

L-R Oni, Charlotte Blake Alston, Jawara Bishop, Thelma Robinson, Abiodun, Pauline Cohen, Atiya Ola, Doni Johnson & Ron Carter


What's inside of you, will always shine thru!

Telling "Little Apple Tree" - New Jersey Storytelling Festival at Grounds For Sculpture, NJ 2016

"Cause your a shinning star, no matter who you are"  Maurice White of Earth, Wind & Fire


Oni's Story Statement

Queens of Storytelling Quilt

 "My greatest desire as a storyteller & poet, is to share stories and poetry which highlight the fruitages of the spirit in all humankind: Love ~ Joy ~ Peace ~ Patience ~ Kindness ~ Goodness ~ Faith ~ Mildness ~ Self-control and I may add: Self Esteem...sprinkled with reflections of life lessons and laughter. I also enjoy retelling & creating stories rooted in connecting community & cultures."

Oni Lasana

Believe!

Recorded at Tobago Library Services Children's Storytelling Room, Trinidad & Tobago 2017

Storytelling : May 2017 via Art-Reach, Inc.

"Thank you so much for coming to our group--you are truly a find and I am glad Philly's CSP (Community Support Program)  found you. You are a talented, warm and generous spirit and you were so understanding of our community.  Bless you.

Michelle Davis, MBA
Public Health Program Analyst Supervisor
City of Philadelphia
DBHIDS- Operations Unit

Listen To A Story

Oni retells a Nigerian Folktale

"Everything's Connected" & more stories from many other wonderful storytellers. Listen to the whole series!

National Association of Black Storytellers Founders

Mother Mary Carter Smith & Mama Linda Goss in Richmond, Virginia

With the iconic Ruby Dee

Oni opened for the fabulous actress, activist and author's book signing at Ruth Ann's Restaurant in Harlem, New York.  

Why A Storyteller?

Modern Day Storytellers


Martin Luther King Jr.

Dr. King's stories, sermon's and speeches changed a nation.

Listen to Oni's tribute poem at poetry & video page.

West Chester Community Performers

Oni's "drama mama's" have produced plays and reader's theater featuring African American literature for over 30 years. The West Chester Community Performers are based in West Chester, Pennsylvania.


The Power of Storytelling

Diane Williams, Jackson, MS

"Storytelling can take you back to places you've never been before. So sit back and listen to a story."

Sharon Holley, Buffalo, NY

 "Storytelling is the lifeline to who I am, where I have come from and what road I will travel." 

Ife Gail Young, Brooklyn, NY

 "I love stories that inspire, empower and teach, stories whisper a healing to the soul."  

Diane Ferlatte, San Francisco, CA

"Storytelling is an opportunity for me to preserve, reclaim and pass on the history and culture of African Americans  and others through the oral tradition. For me, storytelling  is an intimate way to connect with people, which I love." 

Karima Amin, Buffalo, NY

"Tell a story, save a life!"

Vicky Jackson, Tampa, FL

 " Storytelling is Big Medicine, and Storytellers are Healers.  Collected stories go into our mojo bag, and EVERYBODY loves it when the necessary medicine is laughter.  BUT some of our medicines initially offend the senses when swallowed.  But it's still the cure... " Ase!

Keep A Pluggin' Away

A poem by Paul Laurence Dunbar. Recorded at Tobago Library Services Children's Storytelling Room, Trinidad & Tobago 2017

THE MANY MUSES OF ONI LASANA - A PLAY SHOP

 A theatrical storytelling workshop & performance on how to engage and enrich all audiences with characters and story development.

Featured on November 20, 2016

               GARDEN STATE STORYTELLERS LEAGUE'S TELLABRATION 2016 PRESENTED

ONI LASANA in THE MANY MUSES OF A STORYTELLER
A theatrical storytelling delight!

Oni presented excerpts on a timeline of storytelling as NANA AESOP, 'LIAS' MOTHER, GRANNY GOOSE, to "story acitivist" MAMA EARTH. 

She also introduced "Nyota Kungaa" from her "Girl Friends" program. 

This fabulous workshop demonstrated and shared Oni's  secrets on the development of characters, story enhancements, audience participation, with the use of poetry, story, songs and props.

*!*

Visit the workshop page for more offerings.


~ Storytelling Friends ~

Tobago Culture Festival

Glenda-Rose Nassoma Layne, Storyteller & Director of Culture, Tobago 

Dr. Hugh "Brother Blue" Morgan Hill

With his beloved wife Dr. Ruth Hill of Cambridge, Mass. Brother Blue is gone but never forgotten.


Storytellers & Poets

Diane Williams of Mississippi, Mitch "Grand Daddy" Capel of North Carolina with Oni & Performance Poet, Lamont " Napalm Da Bomb" Dixon of New Jersey.

Reviews, Compliments & Kudos

2016

A wonderful storyteller!

We had Oni visit as the Storyteller and she was simply fantastic. The children were so enthralled and excited that many of them ran up to give Oni hugs following the performance. The variety of stories told was great and her ability to connect with the children was awesome.

Reviewer: John Zimmerman

Event Date: November 24th, 2015

Event Type: School Assembly, Princeton, New Jersey


STETSON MIDDLE SCHOOL, West Chester Pennsylvania

Dear Oni,                                                                                                           

      On behalf of the Diversity Committee & Black History Program Coordinating Committee at G. A. Stetson Middle School, we thank you for your performances in our assembly program "We Are Citizens of the World Offering Hope."

       Your presentation on Black American Inventors - "Did You Know?"...the Asian folktale, "War & Peace" and your original "Obama Rap" story gave our program a wonderful energy that was upbeat, yet with an informative message for all to enjoy. Your selections really connected with our theme.

     This was your second time as a presenter for our Black History Assembly Program and you continue to show your sincere love and commitment to your craft. You are truly a voice of hope in our world community today.  We are so pleased to know you. 

Sincerely, 

Angela Williams, Assistant Principal 

Dawn McNeil-McMillan, Co-Coordinator

G. A. Stetson Middle School, West Chester, Pennsylvania

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"If unique is what you seek!"

Storytelling ~ Theatre ~ Language Arts ~ Music ~ History

484.885.0153

Philadelphia ~ Coatesville, Pennsylvania