Workshop with Regi Carpenter — Friday Afternoon

February 25, 2015

“At the end of my life, with just one breath left, if you come, I’ll sit up and sing.” Rumi

In this three-hour workshop we give space and voice to the stories of death, dying, and life. Through writing, sharing, listening, traditional and personal storytelling we share our experience with others about the people we love and are losing or love and have lost. Through it all we are reminded that stories of loss are stories of life and the complicated feelings and experiences we have during and after a death. Please bring a notebook, a photograph, a keepsake or a memory to share. This workshop is appropriate for caretakers, medical professionals, teachers, therapists, social workers and people who have experienced a death in their life.

regi web

About Regi Carpenter
Regi Carpenter is a solo performance artist, author, and performance coach. An award winning performer, Regi has toured her solo shows and workshops in theaters, festivals and schools, nationally and internationally. Her writings and blogs about storytelling, ancestry and identity have been published in various print and online publications.

Regi is the youngest daughter in a family that pulsates with contradictions: religious and raucous, tender but terrible, unfortunate yet irrepressible. These tales celebrate the glorious and gut – wrenching lives of four generations of Carpenter’s raised on the Saint Lawrence River in Clayton, New York. Tales of underwater tea parties, drowning lessons and drives to the dump give voice to multi-generations of family life in a small river town with an undercurrent.  Swift, unexpected, and powerful as the river itself, Regi’s tales are “an unexpected gift that promises to leave us longing for more empathic vignettes from this comfortable, compelling voice.” Booklist Review of CD Diving and Emerging

Regi is the recipient of the JJ Reneaux Emerging Artist Award, a Leonard Bernstein Teaching Fellowship Award, the Parent’s Choice Gold Award, the Parents’ Guide to Children’s Media Award and the Storytelling World Award. Her performance piece Snap! won the 2012 Boston StorySlam. Snap! is a featured Listen story on The Moth website.

In addition to her work as a performer, coach and writer, Regi is also the founder of Stories with Spirit, a creative initiative dedicated to bringing songs of joy and stories of hope to grieving children and the people who love and care for them in homes, hospices, and hospitals. Her high school storytelling curriculum, “Teens Talking” has been awarded grants from the New York State Council of the Arts.


Children’s Concert – Sunday Morning

June 2, 2014


Awele Makeba will perform the Sunday Children’s Concert in the amphitheater .

Awele (ah WAY lay) is an award winning and internationally known storyteller/teaching artist,
literacy specialist, and recording artist recognized as a “truth teller,” an artist for social
change, and someone who sparks “aha!” moments.   She researches, writes and performs hidden
African American history, folklore, and personal tales. She provides opportunities for
audiences to grapple with the meaning of  their own lives as they make meaning of past

She has made it her life’s work to tell history through the words of its silenced
and oft-forgotten witnesses.  Awele uses art to catalyze deep conversations about race,
our  common humanity, and our vision of a just, humane, multiracial society.  Awele
teaches through performance and she animates democracy through her art.


Open Telling – Sunday Morning

March 1, 2013

First come, first serve! This Sunday morning session is an opportunity for up-and-coming storytellers to reach a seasoned audience with the spice of new stories.

The Stories We Tell – A Workshop with Laura Simms – Friday Afternoon

March 1, 2013

We live in a universe of stories, familiar, heard or hidden. Starting the workshop with a traditional tale as a scaffolding for reflection and learning about how a story functions in its dynamic engagement, we will use images from the tale to jump start a potent personal narrative. The stories of our lives influence how we engage with ourselves and the world. They support and nurture our lives, or become the source of conflict or obstacle. Through the guided process of creating the personal story we can harvest our stories to bring benefit to ourselves and others and turn memory into mythic memoir. Discussion and excavation will illumine the power of telling stories, whether true life or traditional, as a compassionate act that releases us from the burden of opinion or limiting ideas. Everyone is to bring a journal or note paper, and dress casually.

Suggested reading: OUR SECRET TERRITORY: The Essence of Storytelling (sentient books) by Laura Simms. There will be handouts with other readings, a suggested bibliography and worksheets so what we do can be repeated and deepened on one’s own.

Sierra Story Slam – Saturday Afternoon

March 1, 2013

The Sierra Storytelling Festival will hold the hugely popular Story Slam once more this year. It’s your chance to regale the crowd and compete in the art of storytelling for a prize, by telling your own true story that’s in accord with our Slam Theme. It’s a contest of words by talent both known and undiscovered, and anyone over age 18 can tell.

The theme is Escape!

You as a slammer will enter the competition by dropping your name in a hat. Twelve names will be drawn.

You’ll have five minutes to tell the tale. Time your tale well. Points are lost if you lapse past the five minutes or go far into the one-minute grace period in wrapping up the story.

There will be a small team of judges, some professional storytellers, some not, made up of audience members.

Judges will make decisions based on these criteria: how well the story is told; how well the story is structured; how well the story explores, connects with, and/or reveals some truth about the theme; and how well the time limit is honored.

True stories are the medium here; poetry is discouraged unless it fits the criteria and tells a story. Folktales, myths or fables are discouraged unless, again, they are worked into the teller’s true story and fit the criteria. Copyright laws apply: Don’t use someone else’s work. Audience and judges expect real life adventures.

Props—including notes—are not to be used.

The winner is the lucky recipient of an All-Festival Pass to next year’s Sierra Storytelling Festival.