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Iceni Magazine | August 14, 2022

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The Greatest Storytellers Of All Time Revealed

The Greatest Storytellers Of All Time Revealed

Roald Dahl has been named the greatest storyteller of all time.

The creator of classics such as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach has topped a poll of the greatest authors, songwriters, artists and photographers.

Oliver Twist author Charles Dickens came a close second followed by playwright William Shakespeare and Harry Potter creator JK Rowling.

Visual storytellers including graffiti artist Banksy, Jurassic Park director Steven Spielberg and legendary cartoonist Walt Disney also featured in the top 50.

Canon UK commissioned the research to mark the launch of its 365 Days of Summer competition to find a storyteller to spend a year identifying and living 365 new stories across the globe.

It also emerged a staggering 94 per cent of people enjoy a good story with the average adult telling four stories a day, through words, conversation and with photos.

Matthew Searle, Country Director, Canon UK and Ireland said: “You can’t beat a good story, whether it’s words in a book, photographs or film or simply through conversation.

“Storytellers come in many different forms whether it’s through music, writing or photos, and those in this top 50 are responsible for some of the greatest tales of all time.

“Roald Dahl in particular may be well known for his words, but the images which accompanied many of his children’s books have helped to paint the picture for children for generations.

“As technology evolves, stories are now so much more than just the written word and people today have a variety of ways to tell their own story and make sure it lives on.”

The poll of 2,000 adults saw Roald Dahl take the top spot with a staggering 58 per cent of the vote.

Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, JK Rowling and Steven Spielberg completed the top five.

The Little Mermaid author Hans Christian Andersen came sixth while Alice in Wonderland creator Lewis Carroll and Walt Disney followed close behind.

The Famous Five writer Enid Blyton and Lord of the Rings author J.R.R Tolkien took the final slots of the top ten.

Film-based stories have also led to directors and actors in the top 50 such as James Cameron, Quentin Tarantino and Morgan Freeman.

Ridley Scott, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Tom Hanks and George Lucas also feature.

And authors feature heavily in the list with Beatrix Potter, AA Milne and George Orwell all within the top 50.

More modern writers also made it into the list including children’s authors David Walliams and Jacqueline Wilson, along with Twilight author Stephenie Meyer and Fifty Shades of Grey writer EL James.

But it isn’t just authors who feature with songwriters Adele, Ed Sheeran, Eminem and Prince also among the top storytellers.

It also emerged that 56 per cent of people try to take as many photos as possible to allow them to tell their own story, with half saying they often upload their ‘story’ to social media.

And almost four in ten have taken part in an online or social media storytelling craze such as the 365photo challenge.

Canon is looking for someone to fill a very unique position as it begins its search for the ultimate storyteller to inspire us all to ‘Live For The Story’. The lucky person will spend a year chasing summer across the globe in order to identify 365 inspiring stories.

Applications for this unique role will be taken via Instagram and judged by actress, producer, musician and storyteller, Zoe Kravitz.

Those who think they have what it takes to inspire people to find their own stories can apply by sharing their most memorable summer story on Instagram, tagging @CanonUK and #LiveForTheStory.

Submissions will be judged on a number of elements including storytelling ability, visual appeal, originality and inspirational qualities.

The successful candidate will be required to travel the world chasing summer in order to identify 365 inspiring stories throughout the course of the job.

The role is all expenses paid and, of course, offers a holiday allowance of 365 days per annum.

Matthew Searle – Country Director, Canon UK and Ireland said: “Every moment has the potential to be important, even more so in the summer when we are open to new challenges and experiences.

“We are on the hunt for someone to inspire us, to help us ‘Live For The Story’ every day and ensure none of us miss those special moments.”

TOP 50 GREATEST STORYTELLERS OF ALL TIME                           

  1. Roald Dahl
  2. Charles Dickens
  3. William Shakespeare
  4. JK Rowling
  5. Steven Spielberg
  6. Hans Christian Andersen
  7. Lewis Carroll
  8. Walt Disney
  9. Enid Blyton
  10. J.R.R Tolkien
  11. David Attenborough
  12. Beatrix Potter
  13. Stephen King
  14. Brothers Grimm
  15. HG Wells
  16. AA Milne
  17. George Orwell
  18. CS Lewis
  19. Ernest Hemingway
  20. Ridley Scott
  21. T. S. Eliot
  22. James Cameron
  23. Quentin Tarantino
  24. Morgan Freeman
  25. George Lucas
  26. Alan Bennett
  27. Andrew Lloyd Webber
  28. Jacqueline Wilson
  29. Ed Sheeran
  30. Banksy
  31. Eminem
  32. Virginia Woolf
  33. The Coen Brothers
  34. Martin Scorsese
  35. Philip K. Dick
  36. David Walliams
  37. Tom Hanks
  38. JD Salinger
  39. Louis Theroux
  40. Adele
  41. Iain M. Banks
  42. Samuel Jackson
  43. Tom Hardy
  44. Stephenie Meyer
  45. H. P. Lovecraft
  46. E L James
  47. Jack Kerouac
  48. Prince
  49. John Lennon
  50. Kevin Spacey


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