Performance Themed General Sessions
*all presentations subject to change
Anchoring the 2013 National Storytelling Conference's workshops, performances, fringes, and swaps will be three plenary sessions designed to explore story within other art forms: Story in Visual Art & Media, Story in Music, and Story in Dance.
Thursday, 7:30-9:30 pm: Story in Visual Art & Media
Joe Lambert, co-founder and director of the Center for Digital Storytelling, will share a brief Tapestry of Stories with us to demonstrate how modern media can enhance, not detract, from telling an effective story. Joe is widely recognized as a leading voice for digital storytelling and respected NSN members who have worked with him loudly sing his praises; learn more about him at the CDS website and at our master class presenter page.
Christopher Agostino, one of our most talked about 2012 conference fringe performers, will perform a few of his StoryFaces™, Tales of Transformation and Wonder, including his signature story, "The Tiger that Went to the House of the Sun." He delivers a one-of-a-kind performance, face painting the audience volunteers on stage to illustrate the stories as he tells them, fully engaging the audience with a skillful spoken word performance combined with his unique visual art. For those of us who only saw his (beautiful!) end result last year, we anticipate enjoying the full impact of art and story combined. Learn more about Christopher Agostino's StoryFaces.
Oliver Uberti (oliveruberti.com) is a visual journalist who travels the world, capturing stories with a sketchbook in hand. From 2003 to 2012 Oliver worked in the design department of National Geographic Magazine, most recently as Senior Design Editor. His designs, information graphics, and art direction have won numerous international awards. In 2010, he designed 826DC's Museum of Unnatural History – a non-profit tutoring center, novelty gift store, and the only museum he knows of with a cave, unicorn tears, and hundreds of volunteers teaching children to write. Oliver has spoken at TEDx on creativity and the time required to produce good, soulful work, and at the Americans for the Arts' Conference about how human connections shape our lives and our art. A member of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators, he left National Geographic in 2012 to form his own studio, Oliver Uberti Creative, in Ann Arbor, Michigan where he also teaches at the University of Michigan School of Art & Design. This June, Oliver and his students will travel to Tanzania to help develop clean cookstoves with Maasai families. The Maasai do not speak much English; Oliver's students do not speak much Maa. However, there is a language they both speak fluently: art.
Watch for updated information coming soon as Oliver is currently creating his special keynote presentation, just for the National Storytelling Network, about the power of story communicated through art.
Friday, 9:00-10:30 am: Story in Music
After a special surprise conference introductory experience, get ready to "Feel the Rhythm! Embrace the Spirit!" The Healing Force will bring their joyous energy to us and show how weaving music and story increases the impact of storytelling. The Healing Force features Joseph and Gail Anderson, their daughter Sonji and their son Karim. This family of performers/educators has been offering their special brand of music and storytelling in communities all over the country and abroad for the past 20 years. They share cultural education and enlightenment through traditional African music, drumming, dancing, and more. Their performances resound with the sounds of acapella singing, West African drums, guitar, shekeres, thumb pianos, and ngoni (a string instrument from Mali). By offering performances, workshops, and residencies in schools, colleges, universities, churches, libraries, at festivals, retreats, camps, after-school programs, and the like, The Healing Force makes their motto, "Serving the Community Through the Arts" come alive! They recently partnered with the YMCA to bring cultural experiences to the 21st Century Learning Centers. The Healing Force was presented with the coveted International Bunche Medal in 2008 and named Goodwill Ambassadors of the Arts. This medal was named after Nobel Peace prize recipient Dr. Ralph Bunche, and was given to the group in recognition of their many years of bridging and celebrating African and African American culture.
"We welcome you right from the start. Ashe! Ashe! Sounds of love straight from the heart. Ashe! Ashe!" - The Healing Force
Sunday, 10:45 am-12:15 pm: Story in Dance
Sunday's final session before our closing ceremony and group luncheon will allow us to enjoy some of the best of Richmond's local arts and culture, through Story in Dance. Members of the Latin Ballet of Virginia will present a story told to us through dance, with opportunity for Q&A to discuss how the movement communicates the story's essence. The Latin Ballet of Virginia is devoted to fulfilling Webster's definition of ballet as 'a theatrical art form using dancing, music, and scenery to convey a story…'. "From the passionate fury of flamenco to tango's forbidden heat, the polished elegance of classical ballet to the earthen power of modern dance, the Latin Ballet of Virginia uses the expressive beauty of movement to weave the tales and traditions that are the heart and soul of Hispanic culture." Their mission is to preserve and promote Latin American and Spanish cultures through dance performance and education. We are thrilled to have the opportunity while in Richmond to experience their shared passion for expressing and preserving story.