2016 was an active and fun year for Illinois Storytelling:
Monthly Open Mics and Featured Tellers on Saturdays evenings: Feb. 6, March 5, May 14, June 4, Sept 10, Oct 1, Nov. 12, Dec. 10 at Dominican University gave new tellers an opportunity to practice their craft and featured ISI members Anne Shimojima, Linda Gorham, Megan Wells, Judith Heineman, Kucha and Baba Tony Brown as well as, Nestor Gomez (3X winner of the Chicago Moth Grand Slam), Jill Howe (producer of Chicago’s Story Sessions), and Cassandra Wye, visiting from the United Kingdom.
Family Festival of Stories, Friday, Oct. 21 at Dominican University entertained over 180 parents, grandparents and children with an evening of face-painting, a fancy face parade and featured Japanese storyteller Karin Amano, Colombian American storyteller Jasmin Cardenas and African American storytellers Kucha and Baba Tony Brown. Each teller invited the audience to participate in their stories by repeating phrases in the cultural language of the story. The children loved it. It sounded like a little United Nations.
Through the Storytelling in the Schools programs, ISI tellers gave nine performances for 890 students in five Oak Park area schools in early October. Janice Del Negro presented a Story Crafting Workshop: Retelling Folktales in Your Own Voice at Dominican University, March 5.
Much gratitude to our funding agencies: the Oak Park Area Arts Council and Northlands Storytelling Network, to our talented and generous ISI members, and to the many enthusiastic story listeners who came to enjoy the programs.
Illinois Storytelling Festival presents is produced in cooperation with Dominican University and the Graduate School of Library and Information Science and is partially funded by Northlands Storytelling Network. This event is also partially funded by the Oak Park Area Arts Council, in partnership with the villages of Oak Park, Forest Park, and River Forest, and the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.