Storytelling Review: “The Flame of Love”

Patrick Ball and the Medieval Beasts - photo provided by Storytelling Arts of Indiana

On Sunday afternoon, October 25, 2009, I drove to the newly-renovated Indiana History Center on the canal in downtown Indianapolis to hear storyteller Patrick Ball and musicians Shira Kammen and Tim Rayborn (a duo known collectively as “The Medieval Beasts”) bring to life a piece called “Telling the Flame of Love: The Legend of Tristan and Iseult.”  It was presented by Storytelling Arts of Indiana and the Indiana Historical Society as part of the Printing Partners Storytelling Theater series.  It was sponsored by Lewis & Kappes, Fred and Midge Munds, Tom and Pat Grabill, and Ryan Zumbahlen.  Cathy Covey was the sign language interpreter.

It is a relatively new piece, I think.  Usually Storytelling Arts director Ellen Munds only brings to Indianapolis storytellers and storytelling shows that she has heard and seen before in other venues around the country.  When I asked her after this show where else she had seen it, she said that she had not, in fact, seen it before.  When Patrick Ball had told her about it, she was intrigued.  She trusted him enough based on past experiences to hire him based just on his description of the piece.

I’m glad she did.

Continue reading Storytelling Review: “The Flame of Love”

“Fiddle Shticks” and Lincoln Stories This Weekend

Portrait of Abraham Lincoln by Alexander Hesler, courtesy of the Indiana Historical Society

“Of the People: Stories and Images of Abraham Lincoln,” by Hope Baugh (that’s me!), premieres this Sunday, January 18, 2009 from 4:00-6:00 pm at the Indiana History Center (not to be confused with the Indiana State Museum.) 

This program is part of the Sharing Hoosier History through Stories collaboration between the Indiana Historical Society and Storytelling Arts of Indiana.  Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door and may be purchased online before 5:00 Saturday night via the Storytelling Arts of Indiana website or by calling 317-232-1882.

“Of the People” is not a theatre piece, per se.  It is just me on stage, telling you some of the stories that made me fall in love with Abraham Lincoln and showing you PowerPoint slides of some of the photographs and other items in the Indiana Historical Society’s vast collection.

But it will be live, and it will be “crafted” (well crafted, I hope!) and if you are at all interested in our 16th president, I think you will enjoy it.  If you are available Sunday afternoon, I would be honored and grateful to have you in my audience.  The stories only come alive when all three elements – teller, story, and listener – are present.

Coming soon here on my blog:

** A review of “Fiddle Shticks,” the new, original sketch comedy revue presented by Three Dollar Bill Comedy Company at the Indianapolis Comedy Sportz theatre.  I went to the opening show last Friday night, and I am going to try to make it to the second version of it at 10:00 tonight.  It is every Friday night for six weeks.  I have an Encore show to judge first tonight, so we’ll see how the timing works out.  In any case, I had a wonderful time last week, and every week is supposed to be a little different.  I loved the writing last week, and the six players were a collective hoot – subtle and brilliant in their individual portrayals and in their interactions with each other. 

By the way, you must be 17 years or older to attend.  I don’t remember a lot of curse words (maybe it’s just because I’ve slept since last Friday) but no topic is sacred.

Also, today when I called to make my reservation, CS manager Troy Hannah gave me several minutes of his time to answer several of my questions about the Comedy Sportz club itself, so I will be sharing that conversation, too.  That man is articulate!  It was fun to talk with him.

** A review of storyteller Motoko’s funny and thought-provoking presentation of “Tales of Now and Zen” last Saturday night.  Even more than her stories, I appreciated the chance to chat with Motoko a bit afterwards.  She generously asked about my Lincoln program and I poured out anxiety that I hadn’t even realized I had been carrying.  She re-grounded me by reminding me of two important things that I had forgotten:  “The audience is on your side” and “It’s not about you, it’s about Lincoln.” 

** A review of Dance Kaleidoscope’s colorful “Magical Mystery Tour.”   This colorful, high-energy presentation was a real treat, too.  I now have crushes on several of the dancers and on creative cutie David Hochoy, DK’s artistic director and choreographer.

One can never have too many crushes.

My day job is unusually busy these next couple of weeks, too, so I ask your patience in terms of my blog.  As always, thanks for reading.  ‘See you at the theatres!

Hope Baugh –