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State of Stories: Missouri Bicentennial

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State of Stories is a series of free public programs commemorating the Missouri Bicentennial. Developed by The Story Center at Mid-Continent Public Library and the University of Missouri Extension Community Arts Program, programs will explore Missouri history and culture through storytelling performances and workshops, book conversations, presentations, a publication, and other activities. Funding for these programs has been provided by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the William T. Kemper Foundation—Commerce Bank, Trustee.

A cornerstone of State of Stories programming is an oral storytelling component, a series of four performances and workshops by master Missouri storytellers. Performances at various MCPL branches will entertain and educate audiences of all ages and represent traditions from across the state. Workshops will help emerging storytellers develop skills and techniques for researching and telling historical stories. Facilitated by Kansas City-based storyteller Joyce Slater, participants completing the sequence of workshops will have the opportunity to tell a five to seven-minute story as part of the state Bicentennial celebration in August 2021.

State of Stories Program Evaluation

If you have attended a program that is part of the State of Stories series, please let us know what you think by filling out our State of Stories Program Evaluation. Your feedback is integral to continuing to provide high-quality programs.

State of Stories Program Archive

Watch select State of Stories programs on MCPL’s YouTube channel.

View the Playlist

Storytelling Performances

True Tales of Tender Courage and Raucous Humor

Beth Horner: True Tales of Tender Courage and Raucous Humor

Friday, May 14, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Live on The Story Center's Facebook page

Beth Horner performs two of her most dynamic and renowned tales. The Silver Spurs: A Tale of the American Civil War is a story of this tumultuous, pivotal period in American history drawn from the Civil War diary of Beth’s great-great grandfather. The Pipeline Blues is a captivating, fast-paced tale of one man and one song that galvanized a Missouri community. The story has been called “The tale of environmental triumph that actually makes the subject of sewage entertaining!”

This program is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the Missouri State Library, a division of the Office of the Secretary of State.

Storytelling Workshops

From Fact to Fascination: Telling Tales of True-Life and Historical Events

Beth Horner: From Fact to Fascination: Telling Tales of True-Life and Historical Events

Saturday, May 15, 10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Zoom

In this participatory workshop, Beth Horner will lead participants step-by-step through taking a moment in history or an actual event and making it into a story that fascinates listeners. From small moment to character to overarching story structure – learn how to transform dry facts and dates into a captivating story with images vivid enough to make listeners feel as if they were there. Within each module of the workshop, Beth will explore the ethical considerations relevant to specific steps within the story creation process. 

This program is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the Missouri State Library, a division of the Office of the Secretary of State.

Presentations and Book Conversations

The State of the State: Missouri Writers on Missouri

The State of the State: Missouri Writers on Missouri

Tuesday, May 25, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Live on The Story Center's Facebook page

Dr. Sam Cohen, Associate Professor of English at the University of Missouri-Columbia, describes what the work of Missouri writers—from the first African American novelist Williams Wells Brown to Hannibal’s Mark Twain, Moberly’s Jack Conroy, St. Louis’s T. S. Eliot, Ntozake Shange, and Naomi Shihab Nye, Kansas City’s Melvin B. Tolson and Calvin Trillin, Columbia’s own John Williams, and West Plains’s Daniel Woodrell—tells us about the state of our state across its length and breadth and across its history.

State of Stories: Poetry Anthology Book Launch

State of Stories: Poetry Anthology Book Launch

Wednesday, April 21, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Zoom

Facilitated by Jose Faus, this event showcases the poetry anthology edited by Faus, Marianne Kunkel, and Glenn North, and published by Woodneath Press.
 

 

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