Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)


Communication and Storytelling Studies

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Delanna Reed

Committee Members

Nancy A. Donoval, Wendy Doucette


This study examines how professional storytellers negotiated a new storytelling stage—the videoconference platform—as they pivoted their careers during mandated shutdowns due to COVID-19. An examination of the literature reveals extremely limited research involving either professional storytellers or live virtual storytelling. After interviewing five professional storytellers, I analyzed their stories through narrative inquiry. Analysis revealed that the storytellers negotiated the limitations and affordances of Zoom and adapted their storytelling to successfully connect with their audiences. Through crafting a narrative of their stories, I was able to represent their emotions, unique experiences, and abilities to adapt to the online environment. Their stories document significant changes in the art of storytelling during a historic era. This research reveals how storytellers can master the techniques of online storytelling and effectively tell stories to synchronous virtual audiences.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.