"My greatest desire as a storyteller & poet, is to highlight the fruits 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 on life lessons & laughter. I also enjoy re-telling & creating stories to connect local communities with world cultures for peace & understanding."
"The wonderful song of the soul's high adventure" ... Joseph Campbell, The Power Of Myth.
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
Philadelphia's Afrocentric Storytelling Group, Pennsylvania
L-R: Caroliese Frink-Reed, Oni Lasana (President 2006), Charlotte Blake Alston, Jawara Bishop, Thelma Robinson, Abiodun, Pauline Cohen, Atiya Ola, Doni Johnson & Ron Carter
Telling "Little Apple Tree" @ New Jersey Storytelling Festival
Grounds For Sculpture, NJ 2016
"Cause your a shinning star, no matter who you are" Maurice White, Earth, Wind & Fire
In a special tribute to librarian & storyteller, Barbara Baumgartner,
Oni tells to a kid friendly audience.
The Rooster & The Golden Button, a folktale from Hungary, from the book "Good As Gold, stories of values from around the world" edited by Barbara.
Sto'rytelling (poetic storytelling) a poem by Paul Laurence Dunbar. Tobago Library Services, Children's Storytelling Room, Trinidad & Tobago 2019
Video : Shervain Joseph
Keepers Of The Culture's 23rd Annual Family Day 2019 @ Free Library of Philadelphia.
Photo: Oni inside the art installation of Vincent Van Gogh's bedroom at the Grounds For Sculpture, Trenton, New Jersey.
How she was able to pose like a diva in the frame, is another story!
"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, Pennsylvania
Nana Oni shared tales from Liberia, Nigeria, & Gambia.
Also, sharing information on her display of cultural artifacts from Zimbabwe & Ghana.
Enjoyed hearing tales of Aesop, The African storyteller and about Anansi, who came from Africa to the Caribbean to America, on his sharing wisdom with the world.
Enriching the lives of young scholar's everywhere!
Stories from Africa, Caribbean, Europe and America
Will customize a storytelling program with a theme of your choice!
Oni's tears of gratitude, accepting the life membership award for her mentor, Diane Williams, The Storyteller of Jackson, Mississippi, from founders, Mother Mary Carter Smith & Mama Linda Goss in Richmond, Virginia.
(Oni is also a life member of NABS)
2012 : At Ruth Ann's Restaurant in Harlem, New York, Oni presented "Doin' Dunbar as 'Lias' Mother" at a book signing for the iconic actress, civil rights activist and author, RUBY DEE. "In This Life Together" was written with her husband, OSSIE DAVIS.
RUBY DEE is also author of the best seller, "Two Ways To Count To Ten, a Liberian Folktale" and "My One Good Nerve." Ms. Dee enjoyed hearing Oni interpret Dunbar's poetry so much, she exclaimed in her opening, "I want to be like Oni when I grow up!" What a compliment!
Dr. King's stories, sermon's and speeches changed a nation.
Listen to Oni's spoken word tribute to MLK Jr.
Oni's "Drama Mama's" have produced plays and reader's theater featuring African American literature for over 30 years.
West Chester Community Performers are based in West Chester, Pennsylvania.
For upcoming performances "like" us on Facebook!
"Storytelling can take you back to places you've never been before. So sit back and listen to a story."
"Storytelling is the lifeline to who I am, where I have come from and what road I will travel."
"I love stories that inspire, empower and teach, stories whisper a healing to the soul."
"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."
"Tell a story,
save a life!"
"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!
A theatrical storytelling workshop & performance on how to engage and enrich audiences with characters and story development.
Featured on November 20, 2016
GARDEN STATE STORYTELLERS LEAGUE'S TELLABRATION 2016
MUSES OF A STORYTELLER
A theatrical storytelling delight!
Oni presented excerpts on a historical timeline of storytelling as NANA AESOP, 'LIAS' MOTHER, GRANNY GOOSE, to "story activist" MAMA EARTH.
With a special introduction of the most beautiful doll in the world "Nyota Kungaa" from the "Girl Friends" program.
This interactive workshop demonstrated Oni's secrets on the development of characters, story enhancements, and audience participation with the use of poetry, story, songs and props.
Glenda-Rose Nassoma Layne, Storyteller & Director of Culture, Tobago
In 2000 at the Tobago Heritage Festival, Oni represented the USA, performing Paul L. Dunbar's Ante-Bellum Sermon.
Oni, the Storyteller, with Brother Blue and his beloved wife, Dr. Ruth Hill of Cambridge, Mass. at The National Association of Black Storytellers Conference & Festival. Brother Blue (RIP) gone, but never forgotten.
Diane Williams of Mississippi, Mitch "Grand Daddy" Capel of North Carolina with Oni & Performance Poet, Lamont " Napalm Da Bomb" Dixon of New Jersey.