STORY TRAIN 2021: Nolubabalo Rani

iStimela Sendaba welcomes Nolubabalo Rani who will be telling the story ‘Animal Fight’.
A clumsy elephant never watched where he was going. He would stamp on the ostrich eggs. One day the Ostrich was tired of this. She decided to confront Elephant and warn him. Who manages to outsmart the other?

The story train is all about passing on the wonderful African tradition of storytelling and bringing it into the modern day – stories feed our curiosity and imaginations, develop a love of learning, and connect us to others. Aimed at children aged 4-10, each session explores a new story told by a vibrant and energetic storyteller. Being in the zoom room will give you the opportunity to enjoy the story with others, and have some creative fun together. Get on the train daily with Tsholofelo Shounyane, our resident train conductor, and her friend, Nonki.

  • Ticket Price: R0.00
  • Genre: Family
  • Duration (minutes): 30mins
  • Ages: Ages 3 - 10
  • Release Date: July 25, 2021 00:01 - July 25, 2021 23:59



This project is brought to you by ASSITEJ SA and Play Africa. The funding for this collaboration is made possible through the National Arts Council (NAC) PESP fund, the Department of Sports, Arts and Culture and Rand Merchant Bank.

Storyteller: Nolubabalo Rani

Project Managers: Yusrah Bardien, Pauline Hansen

Iekraam Adams, Siphumeze Khundayi, Sanele Moya, Jessica Denyschen, Matthew Griffiths, Renaldo Kell.
Tshireletso Media: Tshepiso Motlhagodi and Tumisang Kokonyane

Educational Materials: Yvette Hardie, Alison Green, Ann Simmonds


Nolubabalo Rani was born in Qamata near Cofimvaba in the Eastern Cape, South Africa and trained as a teacher. She is a graduate of the International School of Storytelling and Centre for Biographical Storytelling, co-host of The Story Club Cape Town and founder of Balisa Nathi Storytelling Collective. As a storyteller she performs in both English and isiXhosa, working with folktales, and personal narratives. She was a volunteer at the 10th Nozincwadi Book and Storytelling Festival (2018); the Book Week for Young Readers, the Franschhoek Literary Festival (2017, 2018 and 2019), the Zeitz MOCCA (2018) and Madiba day (2018). She performed a show called “Thanking the Universe” at The Story Club and one in Franschhoek called “Like Branches on a tree” with Gilly Southwood and Philippa Namutebi Kabali-Kagwa. In 2018 she was filmed for a documentary on Xhosa and Afrikaans storytellers, and organized for the filmmakers to film many more storytellers in the Eastern Cape. She has performed at Africa Day, hosted by The City of Cape Town, and LisaHluma Literacy Festival, hosted by The Amathole District municipality. She is the editor of a book called “Molo Mohape! Molo! Mapetla!” about one of the freedom fighters in South Africa. She appears in the storytelling directory book called The Storytelling Tree, published under the Department of Arts and Culture. Nolubabalo is the chairperson of the Kwa-Faku Vulindlela Reading Club, an organisation which promotes literacy in the community of Nyanga and Phillipi community in Cape Town for over 9 years. Nolubabalo has a special interest in the connection between storytelling and literacy development in children. She is committed to teaching parents and teachers to use stories in their teaching; and to deepen the relationships between parents and their children. She loves reading, writing and storytelling. She says she was blessed to grow up listening to stories from her grandfather who raised her. Her motto is “Stories are blessings to us, so tell a story to bless others.”