Vientiane Digital Storytelling Camp
Stories are a vital part of the cultural heritage of the Lao P.D.R. Inspiring the young generation of Lao citizens to tell them using digital media is the goal of our activities in this South East Asian country.

In collaboration with the National Institute of Fine Arts, MiCT organised a 6-day Digital Storytelling Camp in December 2015 bringing together a Lao-German team with a total of 21 participants in the national capital Vientiane. Students from the Institute of Fine Arts were joined by fellow storytellers from the National University of Laos and the DokLao Media Center, part of Lao development organisation PADTEC.

The main objective of this camp was to support the participants in conveying non-fictional events in words, sounds, images, drawings and videos or any combination of these. German media expert Daniel Hirschler and his local colleague, Khamhou Phanludeth, worked with participants on what makes a good story, how to craft compelling storylines, and which media formats to use. Every morning and afternoon, the group came together in a circle to share their experiences and thoughts on theory versus practice.

The final days of the camp meant production time for the participants. In small groups they searched the neighbourhood of the National Institute for characters of their stories. No guidelines had been given on the choice of medium, yet the majority chose video. The camp closed with a final circle on December 31, now including friends, teachers and colleagues, for a sharing of the stories, video-clips, and mini-documentaries.

The Digital Storytelling Camp has been MiCT’s first activity in Lao P.D.R., thus South East Asia, and was funded by the German Federal Foreign Office.