Story published: 04-30-2013 • Print ArticleE-mail Story to a Friend

Weitkamp to kick off ‘Storytelling Live’

The new season of the International Storytelling Center’s teller-in-residence series is set to begin with Kim Weitkamp, a Virginia-based storyteller who specializes in tall tales, humor, and poignant personal stories.

Weitkamp will be the first in a lineup of 26 performers who will each host a week’s worth of matinee storytelling concerts in Jonesborough from May through early autumn.

The 2013 season of Storytelling Live, as it is called, will kick off with a packed month of special events.

In addition to regular matinees by some of storytelling’s best and brightest, there will be a workshop with Weitkamp, an evening concert by Jay O’Callahan, a children’s show with Antonio Rocha, and a Bead for Life event hosted by Connie Regan-Blake.

All performances will take place in the Mary B. Martin Storytelling Hall at the ISC.

The lineup always includes a wide variety of performers who represent traditions and styles from all over the world, including old-fashioned tales, personal stories, comedy, and historical pieces.

Several world-class musicians are on the roster, too, including the Rev. Robert Jones, David Holt, and Chic Street Man, whose rich repertoires include blues, folk, and bluegrass.

In addition to old favorites like Andy Offutt Irwin, Elizabeth Ellis, Carmen Deedy, and Donald Davis, this season will feature new voices, including Jeff Gere, Tim Lowry, Geraldine Buckley, and Kim and Reggie Harris.

“All of our Storytelling Live tellers are amazing performers — that’s a given,” says Susan O’Connor, director of programming. “What’s remarkable is that they’re amazing in so many different ways. It’s easy to forget that each teller works with the same setup and stands on the same stage. Their talent is transformative.

“One of the advantages of storytelling as an art is that there’s room for an infinite variety of perspectives,” she continues. “For instance, David Holt’s mountain music can show you one side of how storytelling has developed in the U.S. Gayle Ross’ stories, from the Native American tradition, can show you another side. Either way, you can count on the fact that you’ll be entertained.”

Tickets for all matinee performances are $12 for adults and $11 for seniors, students, and children.

Several times each season, Storytelling Live expands beyond its regular matinees to offer exclusive evening concerts. Reservations for these special performances are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Tickets are $15.

Three tellers will offer Saturday morning children’s shows. Tickets are $5 for all ages, with performances geared towards children ages 6-10.

Information about the TIR performers, as well as a detailed schedule for the season can be found at