A stalwart of Furness Tradition festivals Ian Douglas is a Storyteller and Theatre Maker who works extensively across the British Isles. With over 20 years of experience delivering storytelling, performance and theatre activities for schools, arts organisations, communities and festivals across Britain, he has developed a practise approach which mixes sensitivity, comedic energy and wit leading to a style all of his own.

The origins of Ian’s work are steeped in the traditions of street theatre which has helped him develop his unique storytelling style. His work has been described as ‘truly inspirational’ and draws upon a rich vein of British folk tales and world myths.

“What I love about storytelling is its simplicity. Stories meet us half way and we, the audience, have to be complicit for them to be successful. The stories I like to tell are fun, inviting and light hearted – even the serious ones! I believe that storytelling has a unique ability to connect people, not only to each other, but to the past, the future and to the world around us.” – Ian Douglas.

Ian has been telling stories at festivals, schools, libraries and on street corners both nationally and internationally for over 15 years. Originally a street theatre performer, fire breather and stilt walker, Ian has founded two story-based theatre companies. He has also worked as a theatre practitioner in residence for organisations across the North including Northern Stage and Live Theatre in Newcastle and most recently, Theatre by the Lake in Keswick. It was here that he created the ‘Storytree’.

Ian hails from West Yorkshire but now lives with the love of his life on a narrow boat wherever the neighbours are nice.

Smiling and laughter are basically human necessities – if we don’t laugh and smile it can all go very wrong very quickly, which is why the world needs people like Ian Douglas. I don’t think it would be possible to spend any amount of time in Ian’s company, especially when he’s in full story-telling flight, and not come away feeling happier and refreshed. We all need stories, to continue to make sense of the crazy world we live in, and Ian has those rare qualities of unbridled humour and curiosity for the absurd that makes any time in his company an utter delight.

Dave Camlin, Solfest


 Ian Douglas