Skip to main content

Culture vulture

David Drysdale is looking forward to magic, Shakespeare and all that jazz Holiday reading

I want to look again at Bruno Bettelheim's The Uses of Enchantment because it looks at the dark side of fairy tales and the way they reflect experience. We want to develop stories at Discover that reflect issues in children's lives. In London's East End, for example, we have a lot of refugee children and many will have left behind families and familiarity for an uncertain future. Fairy tales deal with this and it's a format we can use. I've also lined up A Confederacy of Dunces (by John Kennedy Toole, about New York medieval historian Ignatius J Reilly in search of a job) because it's hilarious. I like anyone who puts a comic slant on stuff.

Summer sounds

I'm off to the Jazz Cafe in Camden on August 15 to see Nitin Sawhney. I like jazz, especially the cross between jazz and funk and music I can dance to. I'm looking forward to the new album by Lemon Jelly (pictured). I play keyboards and guitar and used to play with the English Teaching Theatre, touring all over the world performing to students learning English as a foreign language.

Summer projects

My career has been spent looking at how performance can aid learning, and I'll be contacting a couple of literacy co-ordinators over the summer who are interested in piloting a project that offers a fresh approach to Shakespeare through music. For example, I've recorded the comedian Ken Campbell performing his own critique of Macbeth as a Scottish serial killer against a background mix of music by Thelonius Monk. These short performances will kick off workshops exploring Shakespeare's plays from new perspectives.

Away from it all

I'm going to Tummel Bridge, north of Loch Tay in Scotland, for two weeks with my family because it's my parents' 40th wedding anniversary and I'll probably walk a few Munros with my dad. My dad's walked all 200-odd of them and I've walked 60 or 70. I was brought up in Edinburgh but I love going up into that open landscape.

David Drysdale, 38, whose background is in theatre and performance in education, is a "story builder" with Discover, a story-creating museum in Stratford, East London, suitable for children up to the age of eight and open every day in the school holidays: see He was talking to Elaine Williams. Culture vulture appears regularly in Friday magazine, which returns from holiday on September 3

Log in or register for FREE to continue reading.

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you