Minnesota Storytellers Have a Tale for You

This past Saturday I was privileged to hear and record three fantastic storytellers weaving words on the basement stage of Java Jack's Coffee Cafe in South Minneapolis. The monthly events, hosted by the Northstar Storytelling League, feature local and visiting tellers in the first hour, then open the mic to audience members for the second. Look below for downloadable recordings of each teller's performance, appearing in the order in which they told.

Joan Calof is a writer, playwright, traveler, and storyteller who performs all around town. She's a perennial Fringe Fest artist and has a CD of stories with two other tellers, Nancy Cox and Agnes Smuda, called Songstories. She told a traveling tale about her experiences in Vietnam.


Loren Niemi, the host of this month's event, is a teacher, organizer, author, and advocate who's been telling stories and organizing storytellers longer than I've been alive. His book with Elizabeth Ellis, Inviting the Wolf In, helps storytellers overcome the problems associated with telling difficult stories. His story for the evening occurs during his time traveling as ringmaster for In the Heart of the Beast Puppet & Mask Theatre's Circle of Water Circus.


Faye Hanson is a Minnesota-born teller visiting from Arkansas whose story revolves around her experiences becoming a "real Southerner" and the culture shock unique to various regions of the South. Download the .mp3