Beloved Kootenay storyteller Barry Gray will be one of the many performers at this weekend's Kootenay Storytelling Festival.

Kootenay Storytelling Festival goes musical

Old favourites will join fresh faces in this weekend's celebration of storytelling and music.

There are multiple generations of Nelson residents who have grown up with the storytelling of Barry Gray, the founder of the Kootenay Storytelling Festival and beloved former Waldorf School teacher, and this year he’ll be introducing his son Tobias’ work along with his own.

“Barry is probably one of the best known and most beloved of local storytellers. He was my elementary school teacher, so I’ve been listening to his stories for as long as I can remember,” said the festival’s organizer Avia Moore.

And since this year’s broad theme is the intersection of music and storytelling, Tobias is offering a performance that combines story and song, The Apprenticeship of a Politician.

“It’s a tour of the West Kootenay looking at events and places in local political history.”

Tobias won’t be the only one experimenting with music—Lucas Myers is making his debut at the event, and will be giving a meta-talk on the subject.

“Lucas is going to be specifically telling a story about how he started using music in his performances.”

Moore said this year’s lineup is a combination of well-known names and brand-new faces. One first-time solo act is L.V. Rogers grad Niko Bell, who has been living and traveling through China.

“He tells folk tales from mythology but also stories based on his experiences living overseas,” said Moore. “He talks about ending up mistakenly on a Chinese talk show, which interestingly is a story I keep hearing from ex-pats in China — apparently it’s really easy to end up on one as a westerner.”

Moore is looking forward to hearing the work of Shayna Jones, an African-Canadian living in Vancouver who will use her theatre background to bring folk tales to life.

“She came last year as an audience member and told a story at the guild meeting that impressed us so much we invited her. She’s a young storyteller, so full of energy, and she does all these amazing voices for the characters. Plus she tells the stories in a very intimate style, just like she’s talking to you, and she differentiates the characters through body movements.”

Moore said this year’s festival, which will also includes Japanese internment survivor and author Diana Cole, as well as many others, will be a “cozy, intimate and community-oriented” that focuses on one venue.

“We’re trying to keep it accessible — come for a whole day, or just an hour or two.”

And though all stories are meant for everyone, there will be some specifically kid-oriented, family-friendly performances.

“And as we’ve been doing for the past few years, we’ll be doing a school outreach program because many of our storytellers will be doing school visits through School District 8.”

All of the storytellers from the weekend will perform a short, 5 to 10-minute story on Friday evening before delivering longer versions the following day.

“That opening night will whet your appetite for the full meal which is the rest of the festival.”

All the performances will take place at Hart Hall, at 501 Carbonate St. Tickets are available from Otter Books or at the door, and cost $10 for Friday night, $20 for a Saturday day pass. Each set individually is $10, and children under 12 pay $10 for a day pass and $5 for individual performances.

For more information visit kootenaystory.org.

Just Posted

Lemon Creek fuel truck driver gets $20,000 fine

Danny LaSante was sentenced in Nelson court today

UPDATED: Ammonia leak shuts down Nelson Curling Club

The club says it can’t afford to make repairs on its own

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

South Slocan woman killed in Friday crash

Police continue to investigate cause of fatal crash

It’s time for Blues Brews and BBQ again

Fundraiser for Kootenay Co-op Radio runs March 1 and 2

VIDEO: 8 things you need to know about the 2019 B.C. budget

Surplus of $247 million with spending on children, affordability and infrastructure

‘Bullet missed me by an inch’: Man recounts friend’s killing at Kamloops hotel

Penticton man witnessed Summerland resident Rex Gill’s murder in Kamloops

B.C. BUDGET: Income assistance raise still leaves many below poverty line

$50 per month increase included in funding for poverty and homelessness reduction

B.C. BUDGET: Indigenous communities promised billions from gambling

Extended family caregiver pay up 75 per cent to keep kids with relatives

B.C. BUDGET: New benefit increases family tax credits up to 96 per cent

BC Child Opportunity Benefit part of province’s efforts to reduce child poverty

B.C. BUDGET: Carbon tax boosts low-income credits, electric vehicle subsidies

Homeowners can get up to $14,000 for heating, insulation upgrades

B.C. man survives heart attack thanks to Facebook

A Princeton man suffered a heart attack while at an isolated property with no cell service

B.C. man sues Maxime Bernier’s People’s Party over trademark

Satinder Dhillon filed application for trademark same day Maxime Bernier announced the new party

Make sure measles shots up to date, Public Health Agency says

Measles causes high fever, coughing, sneezing and a widespread painful rash

Most Read