So here’s the deal…

April 28, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

While I would argue that everyone has a story I don’t consider myself a “storyteller”. Neither am I a writer. And this will become self-evident as this website fleshes out more. I am though an enthusiastic enjoyer of a good story. Additionally, while I believe everyone has a story there are those who’s creative and artful expression is through storytelling. A good storyteller is as enjoyable as a talented musician, a masterful painter or skilled chef.

My sense of things however is that popular culture has largely relegated live storytelling to “folk tales” and children’s entertainment. In an increasingly online and urban world, it’s just not very cool.

I’ve been a fan of the art form for many years. As a kid I enjoyed Bill Cosby and wore out my folks LP’s. In college I was introduced to Garrison Keillor and have tuned in for years. I’ve been to storytelling festivals both large and small. Then while living in the Chicago area I would go a favorite coffeehouse in Wrigleyville where they hosted open mic storytelling on Tuesday evenings. That was urban and hip. That… was cool.

That is what I hope to replicate in, of all places, Beloit WI for the greater stateline area.

This can work.

  • It’s a college town in the midst of other colleges throughout the region
  • There’s an established and expanding arts community in and around downtown (more later)
  • There is a lot of history to be told, not just Beloit but from everywhere folks come from
  • We advocate diversity which holds the opportunity for richer exchange and less sameness.

So, while this project is in it’s developmental stages as is this website, I’d invite you to bring your friends and join us for our first night of open mic storytelling Sunday April 5th, 6:30 pm (we start taking names for storytellers at 6:00) down at bushel & peck’s in downtown Beloit WI. Submit your email address so we can keep you in the loop about upcoming performances and other developments.

Lastly, I would invite you to share this  website with your friends.

Your comments and suggestions welcomed.


Sunday May 3rd. Our Next Evening of Open Mic Storytelling

April 24, 2009 by  
Filed under Storytellers

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Erica Rodenbeck, a student at Beloit College told the tale of The Lorax in impressive fashion at our debut evening of open mic storytelling. We’ve asked her to come back and share another story and she’s graciously agreed.

Erica will be our MC and featured storyteller for our second night of storytelling on May 3rd.

NEW THIS MONTH: Enjoy a glass of wine or beer and enjoy a few good stories. In keeping with the “May Day” theme bushel & peck’s will be featuring Olifant Grove’s Pinotage, a very popular Fair Trade wine from the South Africa.

  • Sign up to tell begins at 6:00
  • Storytelling begins at 6:30
  • We’ll be at bushel & peck’s (328 State St.)
  • The theme for May 3rd will be “May Day”

With May Day being identified with various spring time festivals, do you have a story of spring time? May Day is also the international workers day. Have you a story to relate from the trials and tribulations of work? First job, worst job, dream job. Or recalling cries for assistance… Mayday! Mayday! Tell us a story of a close call, daring acts of bravery or the like. Think about it and join us. Share a story.

The Demon Cat by Sean Buvala

April 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Favorites

“This isn’t kiddie stuff” ~

Ok, so even though our humble endeavor is brand new, this is theater of the mind and as such I’m not keen on staging and props. Having the piano accompaniment, sign language interpreter and some plants on the stage though is very cool. I love that it welcomes hearing impaired. That’s very cool.

Who knows sign language that would be willing to help us out?
Who can play the piano well enough to improvise background?

Reid Miller – Featured teller for April

March 27, 2009 by  
Filed under Storytellers


Theme for April stories: Time


Reid enthralls audiences with original stories, folktales, folkmusic and puppet plays for all ages. He believes storytelling helps people guide, heal, ground and grow themselves. In his stories, the weak gain strength, the bold gain humility, the shy gain courage and the meek gain love. His upbeat, lighthearted approach creates playful fun for everyone. His motto is “Let It Shine!”