Storytelling festival brings workshops to UNK

Bil Lepp2
Bil Lepp is an internationally known storyteller and humorist. A five-time champion of the West Virginia Liars’ Contest, his outrageous tall-tales and witty stories have earned the appreciation of listeners of all ages.

By SARA GIBONEY
UNK Communications

KEARNEY – Storytelling workshops will take place at the University of Nebraska at Kearney as part of this week’s Kearney Area Storytelling Festival.

“Do You Make That Up as You Go Along?” is from 9 to 11 a.m. Wednesday (Jan. 15) in the Ockinga Conference Room.

Presented by Bil Lepp, the workshop will help people better integrate the creation and presentation process so writing a tale better compliments the oral version, and the oral version is less dependent on the structure of the written version.

CAROL BIRCH
CAROL BIRCH

The process Lepp will discuss helps tellers create and tell stories as though they are extemporaneous or made up on the spot. Participation and group activities will be part of this workshop.

Lepp is an internationally known storyteller and humorist. A five-time champion of the West Virginia Liars’ Contest, his outrageous tall-tales and witty stories have earned the appreciation of listeners of all ages.

Carol Birch will present “Three Part Harmony: Voices of Parallel Peoples” from 12:30 to 1:45 p.m. Thursday (Jan. 16) in the Ockinga Conference Room.

The goal of the workshop is to enable educators to examine issues related to storytelling outside one’s own culture, while also helping participants become more effective in the telling of stories.

In 1998, Birch received the National Storytelling Network’s Circle of Excellence Award given to storytellers recognized as master tellers by their peers.

Julie Agard, assistant professor of teacher education and a Storytelling Festival board member said, Lepp and Birch are the “yin and the yang of storytelling” – Lepp with his comedic style of storytelling and Birch, known for telling stories from literary sources.

The workshops are free and open to the public, and sponsored by the UNK Artists and Lecturers Committee.

The Kearney Area Storytelling Festival, which takes place Tuesday (Jan. 14) through Saturday (Jan. 18), features professional storytellers and area storytellers.

Free public performances are listed below:
Tuesday, Jan. 14
7 p.m. – Bil Lepp, Stories for Families, Kearney Public Library.

Wednesday, Jan. 15
9 a.m. – Bil Lepp, “Do You Make That Up as You Go Along?” Ockinga Conference Room, UNK.
1 p.m. – Bil Lepp, Stories for Seniors, Peterson Senior Activity Center.

Thursday, Jan. 16
12:30 p.m. – Carol Birch, “Three Part Harmony: Voices of Parallel Peoples,” Ockinga Conference Room, UNK
7 p.m. – Carol Birch, Stories for Families, Lexington Public Library.

Friday, Jan. 17
11 a.m. – Carol Birch, Stories for Families with Pre-Schoolers, Kearney Public Library.
 
Saturday, Jan. 18
1 p.m. – Carol Birch and Bil Lepp with Mel Shoemaker and Josh Pierce, Stories for Families, Kearney Public Library.
3 p.m. – Carol Birch and Bil Lepp with Gail Lowenberg, Laura Erickson and Rick Brown, Stories for Families, Kearney Public Library.
7 p.m. – Carol Birch and Bil Lepp, Stories for Adults, Harmon Park Activity Center.

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Source: Julie Agard, 308-865-8556, agardj@unk.edu
Writer: Sara Giboney, 308.865.8529, giboneys2@unk.edu

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