Storytelling Live!, the International Storytelling Center’s celebrated teller-in-residence series, continues its season in September. The program features 26 of America’s best-loved storytellers, one each week, May through October. Each teller appears in matinee performances Tuesday through Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Mary B. Martin Storytelling Hall.
Storytelling Live! kicks off the month with Diane Edgecomb Sept. 3-7. Hailed as “a storyteller of great energy and imagination” by The Stage performing arts magazine, Edgecomb embodies mythic moments in her stories, bringing them to vibrant life. Whether exploring folktales and personal tales or bringing the power of traditional legends to modern audiences, her pieces bring listeners to the very heart of the tale. A recipient of the NSN ORACLE Circle of Excellence award, she has been featured on NPR and has received Storytelling World and Parent’s choice awards for her CDs and books. She is accompanied on stage by Celtic harper Margot Chamberlain as they create an enchanting weave of story, music and song.
Bil Lepp performs Sept. 10-14. Lepp’s family-friendly tall tales and stories have earned the appreciation of listeners of all ages and from all walks of life. Though he is a five-time champion of the West Virginia Liars Contest, Lepp’s stories often contain morsels of truth, which present universal themes in clever and witty ways. His tales and insights into everyday life have delighted audiences across the country, from grade schools to corporate executives to Comedy Central’s Hudson stage. His children’s books and audio collections have won numerous awards including the PEN/Steven Kroll Award, Parents’ Choice awards, and a National Parenting Product Award. Lepp has been featured on NPR’s Mountain Stage and has guest-hosted the show as well. Lepp also presents an evening concert, “Chaos Doesn’t Happen On Its Own” at 7:30 p.m., Sept. 12 for $15.
ISC welcomes Lynette Ford for her residency Sept. 17-21. A nationally recognized and award-winning fourth-generation storyteller, author and educator, Ford shares folktale adaptations, spooky tales and original stories rooted in her family’s multicultural African-American Appalachian (Affrilachian) heritage. Ford’s “Home-Fried Tales” are seasoned with rhythm, rhyme, audience interaction, humor and heart. Ford is a teaching artist with the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education, a workshop facilitator for the Ohio-based collaborative initiative of the Kennedy Center and a Thurber House mentor for young authors. She is also an award-winning author and a two-time recipient of the NSN ORACLE Circle of Excellence award. She also leads a free workshop for teachers, “Educating the Mind and Heart: Storytelling Skills to Build Classroom Community,” Sept. 21 at 9:30 a.m.
Waddie Mitchell, appears Sept. 24-28. From his earliest days on the remote Nevada ranches where his father worked, Mitchell was immersed in the art of spinning tales in rhyme and meter that came to be called cowboy poetry. In 1984, he helped organize the internationally-recognized Elko Cowboy Poetry Gathering, where he gave his first public performance. Since then he has performed internationally, appeared on Larry King Live and the History Channel, and been featured in the New York Times and National Geographic. His stories reflect the common bonds all share – moments both grand and commonplace – all delivered with Mitchell’s personal insights and lessons learned during his life spent as a buckaroo. He is the recipient of two Wrangler awards and the NSN ORACLE Circle of Excellence award.
Donald Davis performs Sept. 30-Oct. 3. Davis was born in a Southern Appalachian mountain world rich in stories, surrounded by a family of traditional storytellers who told him gentle fairy tales, simple and silly Jack tales, scary mountain lore, ancient Welsh and Scottish folktales, and most importantly, nourishing, true-to-life stories of his own neighbors and kin. Featured at festivals throughout the U.S. and world, Davis is also known as a prolific author, producer of books and CDs and a guest host for NPR’s Good Evening. Davis is a recipient of the NSN ORACLE Circle of Excellence and Lifetime Achievement awards.
For more information about Storytelling Live! or to purchase tickets to any of our performances, visit www.storytellingcenter.net or call (800) 952-8392 ext. 222 or (423) 913-1276.