One of the oldest forms of entertainment is story telling. Come and see a modern spin on this art form in The Kindness of Strangers: A Festival of Storytelling to celebrate storytelling in performance.
Storytelling – part acting, part writing and part solo performance piece all captured in a festival began at the side project theatre company Sunday, October 20 in Rogers Park and will run through November 6, 2013 at 7:30pm. Each night, three to four different artists will take the stage to perform 5 to 12 minute pieces, prior to a full-length story offered by one of the festival’s three headliners. Multi-instrumentalist Matt Wills provides musical accompaniment.
This year’s theme is The Kindness of Strangers showcases the 40 artists sharing heartwarming, heartbreaking, and powerful personal stories about how strangers have affected their lives.
The 2013 festival’s headlines are Eric Warner (October 20 – 23) who has told stories with This Much is True, 2nd Story, and his monologues have been in Lifeline Theatre’s Fillet of Solo Festival and the St. Louis Fringe Festival, where a reviewer said he sound like “Ira Glass on fast forward.”; Amy Sumpter (October 27-30) a comedic actress who has done stand-up for the past six years. She is a regular performer with The Kates and Beast Women and is also in an all female Beastie Boys Tribute band, She’s Crafty; and Kim Morris (November 2 – 6) is a writer, actor and editor and has performed her stories at venues throughout Chicago, been published in various publications, and has had her work produced by theatre companies around the city.
The Festivals of Storytelling are one of the ways in which the side project is exploring alternative methods of dramatic art beyond traditional stage-bound theatre, according to Artistic Director Adam Webster. The storytelling fest will provide an opportunity for artists new to this form to perform before a live audience. “We have always been about celebrating new voices, new talent for the stage, from playwrights to actors to directors,” Webster said. “And we have also always been enamored of the short form. We love highlighting the immediacy of our space to connect with the audience with the performer. So, our Festivals of Storytelling allow us to do all three of our goals, as well as promote the neighborhood, since a fair share of the tellers spotlight Rogers Park in their stories.