Trelani Michelle is an award-winning writer, oral historian, and teaching artist. Crowned Savannah’s Best Local Author in 2021, Trelani published an oral history of stories about Black Savannah between 1920-1970 called Krak Teet. She also co-authored the New York Times bestselling Gullah Geechee Home Cooking. A storyteller and a story-gatherer with a Bachelor’s from SSU and an MFA from SCAD, Trelani interned with the Library of Congress’s American Folklife Center to further her work of “Zora Neale Hurstoning,” making history interesting and proving that #WeAllCousins (we’re more alike than we are different).
Editor for Black Art in America, Trelani combines storytelling and art to reposition Black history as the basis for the whole versus a historical sidebar. She’s presented her work at UNC’s Black Communities Conference, SCAD, Savannah State, Live Oak Public Libraries, Georgia Council for the Arts, The Highlander Research and Education Center, and more.
Arts Disciplines:Creative Writing, Storytelling, Poetry/Spoken Word
Core Content Curriculum Areas: English/Language Arts, Social Studies/History
Specialized Content Areas: Literacy, Arts Integration
Grade Levels: 6-8, 9-12
Special Populations:At-Risk Students, BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) students, LGBTQI+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Intersex) students
Pre-Service Learning and Professional Development: Professional Development for Teaching Artists
Geographic Availability:Metro Atlanta, North Georgia, Middle Georgia, South Georgia
School-based Classroom Workshop(s), School-based Afterschool Program, School-based Assembly Program, School-based Residency Program, School-based Summer Program, Community-based Workshop(s)
Community-based Assembly Program, Community-based Afterschool Program, Community-based Residency Program, Community-based Summer Program
Online Content for School Use, Online Content for Community Use, Online Content for Summer Program Use, Hybrid Online and In-Person Content for Schools, Hybrid Online and In-Person Content for Communities, Hybrid Online and In-Person Content for Summer Programs
Fee structure may vary based on distance traveled, program length, audience size, grade level, etc.
- Starting at $500
- Starting at $700
- Starting at $5,000
- Hybrid Online and In-Person:
- Starting at $1,000
Trelani is the storyteller who gets people telling stories. She’s a community/academic scholar who demonstrates that history ain’t just fun facts. It’s a roadmap. It’s also not a book of tales that happened a long time ago with people you’ve never met and will likely never meet. It’s ongoing. It’s your grandparents, parents, and YOU. Personal history is family history which is local history and world history. Through various platforms, Trelani helps her audience connect those dots in a rhythm that everyone can access and enjoy.
Resident Teaching Artist for elementary and middle schoolers at Susie King Taylor Community School (Summer 2022)
Resident Teaching Artist for K-12 at Frederica Academy (one week in February 2022)
Teaching Artist for middle schoolers through Loop it Up Savannah (Summer 2013 and Summer 2021)
Resident Teaching Artist for middle and high schoolers through A Revolutionary Summer (Summer 2019)
Teaching Artist for high schoolers through The Deep Center (2016-2018)
Taught Art Therapy to adults in rehab due to injury or illness through the Telfair Museums’ Jepson Center (2016)
Taught Grammar and Creative Writing Workshops for Savannah State students (2012-2013)
- Creative Writing
- Fostering vivid and fearless community-based creative writing while putting our city’s youth and families at the center of neighborhood research, planning, and redevelopment
- Art form: Creative Writing
- Content area: English and Social Studies/History
- Grade levels: 9th-12th graders
- Power Figures
- Helping children identify power figures through writing, then visually recreate them as dolls. Power figures, in short, are people and characters who are impacting the local/national/international community in a positive way.
- Art form: Visual Art
- Content area: Visual Art
- Grade levels: 1st-8th graders
- From Me to We:
- Engaging the Writing Process Through Personal Essay and Poetry
- Eartha Kitt:
- Reading, Writing and Movement via Eartha Kitt’s Story
Sample Lesson Plans/Study Guides: