Monday, October 12, 2009

Storytelling on Quadra Island CD

This summer I was on Quadra Island, on the east coast of Vancouver Island. I'd gone there to interview Robert Bringhurst, poet and scholar of oral tradition (not to mention designer, typographer, and translator of Haida mythology). My old friend Ron Evans, a great traditional storyteller and Metis oral historian, was also on Vancouver Island, with José Brown, his ceremonial apprentice and storytelling companion. The stars aligned in such a way that we were all able to stay at Heron Guest House, on Heriot Bay, on Quadra Island. While there, we had a storytelling soirée, hosted by Linda Inrig, the keeper of the guest house. She ordered oysters (from across the bay) and put the wine on to chill, and, despite a downpour, about a dozen people, two dogs, and a ring-neck dove gathered in her living room. I recorded the stories, and am delighted that a double-CD is now available. Storytelling on Quadra Island is an unusual CD. Along with our mix of traditional, personal, and historical stories, you'll hear the hiss of the fire, the rain on the roof, the dogs padding across the floor, a very squeaky chair, the ocean a few metres away, and the dove (who seems to come in right on cue). It was a wonderfully intimate time and place for storytelling, and I only realized afterwards that the recording would work as a CD. Ron and I have known each other for more than thirty years. He's one of my true storytelling heroes. It was an honour and a huge delight to swap stories back and forth with him. We hope, if you listen to Storytelling on Quadra Island, some of this friendship, spontaneity, and joy comes through. To order, write to: OR use the Paypal buttons on the CD page. They're available for $25 Cdn. plus postage.

Monday, October 5, 2009

F.O.O.L. - festival of oral literatures

Delighted to announce the first-ever F.O.O.L. - festival of oral literatures, which I'm co-directing with good friend and amazing storyteller Lisa Pijuan-Nomura. Please drop by for the full schedule. It runs Oct. 22 - 25, in house concerts, a farmers' market, The Barns, and Bread and Circus at Kensington Market. We would love to see you there! Lots of experimental storytelling, dance, spoken word, dub poetry, and two of the finest mbira players this side of Zimbabwe.