Whether it's a dirty joke for the happy-hour crowd or a tamer tale of Anansi the trickster for the kindergarten set, there are stories for everyone. Once a year, nationwide, Tellabration celebrates this diversity of narrative-driven spoken word. In the Twin Cities, that means Northstar Storytelling League's daylong event at Open Book, featuring tales from the Middle East, Hmong culture, and Africa, as well as from the Scandinavians of Minnesota stereotype. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. there'll be tales for kids from seasoned storytelling veterans like Nothando Zulu and Larry Johnson. Other stars of local telling hold down the daytime adult storytelling slots: slam poet Cynthia French, Rockstar Storyteller Allison Broeren, and local legend Nancy Donoval, to name a few. Simultaneously, other great tellers will be holding workshops that run the gamut from beginners' groups (if you'd like to try your hand at it) to classes on injecting humor into your stories. Open mics will also run all day, hosted by folks like multi-disciplinarian Joan Calof and Leslie Ball, host of the Twin Cities' longest-running open mic. During the dinner break from 5 to 7 p.m., there's another opportunity to hear and share stories as the celebration breaks out into groups supping at nearby Grumpy's, Wasabi, Old Spaghetti Factory, and Sawatdee. Finally, the event reconvenes at Open Book for the main event: the (not-for-kids) evening concert. This year's lineup features scene power hitters, including Elaine Wynne, who tells stories of growing up just outside the Red Lake Indian reservation; Allegra Lingo, whose tight delivery and precise diction lend her stories a radio-play quality; and Joseph Scrimshaw, pan-media comedian of not-insignificant local fame. As with the rest of Tellabration, the evening concert will doubtless feature a little something for everyone. (Pictured: Katie Knutson; Photo by Brad Dahlgaard)
Sat., Nov. 27, 10 a.m., 2010

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