Time For Once Upon a Time
US News & World Report,
October 27, 2003
The National Storytelling Festival began in 1973, when 60 people came to hear mountain men and
others spin yarns from the back of a hay wagon. In the 30 years since,
the old-fashioned art of storytelling has become a 21st-century
sensation. This year, 10,500 listeners flocked to Jonesborough.
annual festivals take place in the United States. And in 2002, the
folks at Jonesborough opened the $10 million
International Storytelling Center. Funded primarily by government grants and loans, and affiliated
Smithsonian, the center hosts summer storytelling and periodic
Only a rambling and intimate story can reveal such truths, which tend to
be subsumed by the roar of our electronic, visual, and virtual culture.
"Nothing in modern media can compare to being face to face with a person
and feeling that person's heart and soul being poured into the images
and action of their stories," says
Joseph Sobol, author of
Storytellers' Journey: An American Revival. "It can be intoxicating."
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