The New Zealand Guild of Storytellers

A Celebration Of Life. Mangawhai. November 12, 2017
Posted: November 14th, 2017 by Keith Levy | Leave a comment

Thank you Keith from the bottom of my heart for bathing us in your magnificent stories and in so doing, baring your soul. I hope you too were able to drink in the love and care flowing from myself and my beautiful beautiful friends. You were amazing. We cannot appreciate joy without sadness, celebration without grief,and life without death. And in the words of Leonard Cohen “Cracks are how the light gets in”. If I am brave, it is only because I am surrounded by the caring and courageous.

Andrea White



Love Death And Geraniums at Kumeu Arts Centre. February 25, 2017
Posted: March 8th, 2017 by Keith Levy | Leave a comment

I was aware of some of Keith’s views on life from The Flying Tortoise blog which he published for many years. I was fortunate to be travelling in the Auckland / Northland area when he was performing ¬†with The Dirt Road Orchestra at The Kumeu Arts Centre, once again presenting their wonderful ‘Love Death And Geraniums’ program.
The audience was light on the night but to Keith’s credit, he started promptly on time, showing much respect for those who were there and performing as though it was a full house.
His approach and manner to performing is refreshingly simple, intimate and seemingly so relaxed and easy. It’s hard for me to describe the effect of allowing Keith’s rhyming stories and soft, gentle voice to wash over me. The experience allowed me to relax and take in a sense of connection with the simple tales of life he presented.
By half time I was so relaxed it was as if I’d just done a yoga class or finished a meditation.
The format for the evening was simple. Keith would tell one or two stories and The Dirt Road Orchestra would perform a song. They worked together in perfect harmony. Even just to contemplate some of the titles of Keith’s stories tells you something deep and meaningful is happening. ‘There’s Nowhere to Hide’. ‘Those Wasted Years’. ‘Walking The Talk’. ‘There are Those’, ‘Lost and Found’. ‘The Joy of Nothing’, ‘He’s My Brother’. ‘Right Till The End’. ‘Even The Blind Can See’. ‘Not In Our Back Yard’. ‘Will You’. ‘A Mile In His Shoes’. ‘Don’t You Love It’.
His is a thoughtful performance, quiet and quite riveting. More people need to hear these stories.
They are told with a sense of commitment, connection, warmth and intimacy which is so needed in today’s fast paced and distorted world.
Hats off to you Keith. You are a ray of sunshine. A gift to those who take the time to hear your truths.
Jimu Grimmett. Entertainer, Nelson.
 


A Birthday Celebration At Alligator Creek Farm, Waiwera. January 7, 2017
Posted: January 9th, 2017 by Keith Levy | Leave a comment

I’d like to repeat our enthusiastic endorsement of your performance on Saturday night at Alligator Creek Farm’s wonderful outdoor venue. Please be assured that we both enjoyed the content as fully as your relaxed and confident delivery. Your own stories in rhyme and the imaginative rendition of Leonard Cohen’s ‘Suzanne’ were, to us, equally satisfying. I’m sure that if Leonard could have heard you and The Dirt Road Orchestra that evening, he would have approved. We particularly appreciated your story ‘He’s My Brother’. As I mentioned to you earlier, I was immediately struck by how the powerful simplicity of it’s message is underscored by your own cultural background. Please do advise us of future gigs.
Keith Goddard and Barbara Blomfield.
Kaukapapapa.


Love Death And Geraniums at Orewa’s Estuary Art’s Centre. November 25, 2016
Posted: November 27th, 2016 by Keith Levy | Leave a comment

I was at the Orewa Arts Centre on Friday November 25 and had the pleasure and privilege of witnessing a concert titled ‘Love Death And Geraniums’ by The Roaming Rhymester Keith Levy and The Dirt Road Orchestra from nearby Puhoi. Keith tells his original stories from the heart and they cover all of life’s emotions that matter. From love to sadness to social and political injustice. He accompanies himself with simple chords picked in minimalist style on his classical guitar and is backed too on selected stories by The Dirt Road Orchestra’s internationally acclaimed violin virtuoso Murray van Hoorn who’s sensitive fiddling adds another voice to Keith’s stories. Keith’s ‘He’s My Brother’ would stir the hardest heart and ‘He Lives In A Bus’ is not only his own story but also speaks of injustices in our own ‘free land’. Keith is Jewish and this comes across very clearly as does his Kiwiness but his stories are universal.. His unique rendition of ‘Suzanne’ really blew me away as he and The Dirt Road Orchestra honoured the late great Leonard Cohen. The Dirt Road Orchestra are five excellent musicians and sing with marvelous harmonies. Their lyrics written by Andy Hamilton and Matt Jones paint pictures of New Zealand life that most in the audience would identify with. Their performing with Keith is a very special, unique and refreshing experience. Having been a Folk Singer/Songwriter here on the New Zealand Folk Music for many years I’m in a position to applaud Keith and The Dirt Road Orchestra for breaking out of the mold of most local entertainers. They can stand proudly on the international stage.

Bob Lovell. New Zealander, Romany Singer, Songwriter and Performer.



Fundraising Concert at Russell’s Christ Church. November 12, 2016
Posted: November 12th, 2016 by Keith Levy | Leave a comment

Keith. Thank you so much for sharing your insightful and brilliantly written stories in rhyme with us this evening at Christ Church in Russell. I thoroughly enjoyed your humour, honesty and the blatant truths you so cleverly exposed about our world and the way we live in it.

Wil Zwanikken. Russell, Bay of Islands.