National Festival Celebrates the Art of Storytelling
Mix public speaking, acting, comedy and music and we get the performance art of storytelling, practiced by the likes of Mark Twain and Garrison Keillor. The largest related celebration is the 43rd annual International Storytelling Festival, held from October 2 through 4 this year in Jonesborough, Tennessee.
More than 15 award-winning storytellers scheduled include Kim Weitkamp, who mixes humorous personal and family stories and original songs; Charlotte Blake Alston, who tells traditional and contemporary stories of African and African-American oral culture, accompanied by native instruments; and Andy Offutt Irwin, known for his mouth noises and the adventures of his 85-year-old Aunt Marguerite Van Camp.
Attendees can also tell stories at Story Slam! and Swappin’ Ground events and workshops. Festival producer the International Storytelling Center, together with the Library of Congress and American Folklife Center, also conducts a 26-week Teller-in-Residence training program.
Storytelling is not only mentally challenging, it facilitates family and community bonding in a highly social and entertaining format.
For more information and preregistration, visit StorytellingCenter.net.