Kamini Ramachandran (FRSA) co-founded MoonShadow Stories with the aim of reviving the oral narrative tradition focusing on adult audiences because she believes that once the beauty and wonder of the spoken word is reintroduced to adults, then children will benefit. Hence, MoonShadow Stories were the first contemporary storytellers in Singapore to spearhead storytelling for adults.
Kamini is a founder member of the Storytelling Association (Singapore) having served four terms (2008 - 2012) as its President. She is currently Vice-President of the SAS.
Kamini is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA).
Storytelling has always been vital for Kamini, from her earliest memories of her grandparents telling her stories to her efforts in continuing this storytelling tradition with her two sons every day since they were six months old.
Fluent in both English and Malay, Kamini studied English Literature & Language at the University of Reading (UK). Kamini is especially interested in Malaysian stories (legends from Borneo, stories from Langkawi, animal tales of Sang Kancil and Buaya, and lesser known Orang Asli folklore) as she still feels the pull of jungle spirits, having grown up in the peninsula’s plantations. While she is comfortable telling stories to children, she is also adept at regaling adults, drawing on her preference for darker, ambiguous, other-realm supernatural tales. Her adult storytelling repertoire includes original stories based on personal experience (‘The Dato Tree’), universal urban legends (‘The Karak Highway Incident’), regional folklore (‘Umpong Umpong & Babakud’), classic epics (‘The Ramayana’) as well as re-telling stories collected by the eminent Indian folklorist A.K.Ramanujan.
Drawing on her extensive knowledge of stories and the storytelling craft, Kamini has provided customized storytelling consultancy services for a variety of museums, educational institutions, festivals and organizations. She has been commissioned to research and create storytelling content for animation projects, folklore publications as well as curated museum exhibitions.
She is the first Resident Storyteller at The Esplanade for Octoburst Children's Festival having conducted workshops and performances for the last three festivals. She was the first storyteller to be commissioned by The Arts House to create a Night Walk With The Storyteller multi-sensory experience for their 10th anniversary celebrations. She was also commissioned by The Esplanade to create a multi-disciplinary storytelling performance for Kalaa Utsavam Indian Festival of Arts with Forest Fables featuring live sand-art drawing and musicians together with her storytelling.
She has gained an international presence with invitations to present keynotes, conduct workshops and masterclasses as well as perform in public. She was the keynote speaker for the inaugural Chennai Storytelling Festival and has travelled to Bangalore and Shillong in India conducting workshops and performing her repertoire. She has been a featured storyteller at Britain's oldest storytelling festival, the Festival At The Edge, was a featured artist at the Festival Internazionale Di Storytelling Raccontamiunastoria in Rome, participated in the Sydney International Storytelling Conference, and she represented Malaysia and Singapore in the prestigious Scottish International Storytelling Festival She was also a featured storytelling artist and trainer, resident at The Storytelling Castle for the Alden Biesen International Storytelling Festival in Belgium. Kamini also participated in the Federation for European Storytelling (FEST) annual conference held in Italy in 2013.
Kamini has performed at The Esplanade, The Arts House, The Substation, The Gallery Theatre (National Museum of Singapore), The DBS Arts Centre, in various museums, schools and universities, community centres, art galleries, theatres, auditoriums and convention centres, inside a giant inflatable nylon fish, in parks and gardens, at restaurants and cafes, libraries, shopping malls, festival tents and rooftops, ancient outdoor amphitheatres and heritage castles, underneath banyan trees and in tropical jungles, at intimate salons and soirees, with an orchestra in a concert hall, and many more places in Singapore and around the world!
In her many years of public storytelling, she has observed the power of stories to touch hearts and to heal; her collaboration with a clinical psychiatrist in her recent work is a facet of her storytelling passion dedicated to exploring the role of stories and storytelling in counselling and healing. She also incorporates art response activities in her storytelling sessions not only as a creative expression for participants but also as therapy. Kamini is currently working on a pilot project empowering dementia patient caregivers with storytelling skills to engage Alzheimer's patients.
Her focus on keeping traditional stories alive has taken her on journeys into the jungles of Malaysia to stay with the indigenous tribes, to small villages in Thanjavur to listen to rural women bring alive South Indian folktales and to Shillong where she re-told Khasi tribal tales to the community. She has embarked on the 'Tribal Tales' project collecting the oral folklore of the orang asli people, storyteller to storyteller.
She lectures 'The Storytelling Intensive' for performance arts students at LASALLE College of the Arts. She is a specialist storytelling trainer for tertiary level programmes in Arts Management, Animation, Art Therapy, Arts Education, Theatre & Drama Studies and more.
Kamini also mentors and nurtures individuals on their storytelling journey for she believes in building a community of storytellers. Her students are currently nurtured by her Young Storytellers programme to facilitate public storytelling performing opportunities.
She is currently pursuing a full time MA Artist Educator degree with Goldsmith's University UK.
She is one of today's most unique voices in global storytelling.