Downtown Blacksburg Arts Crawl to feature Appalachian storyteller Kathy Coleman
Stories, poetry, essays, and other forms of the spoken word will be celebrated Friday, June 1 at the Downtown Blacksburg Arts Crawl. A reading and storytelling will be held from 4:30 to 6:45 p.m. at Café Bangkok, on Jackson Street, Blacksburg, behind the downtown post office.
Featured artists include Blacksburg newcomer Kathy Coleman, storyteller and Appalachian folkways preserver. Coleman, who was born in the coal fields of Wise County, Va., has made the preservation and perpetuation of Appalachian folklore her life’s work. Her daddy called her a “liar fer hire,” and Coleman says she makes a living running her mouth. Having realized her storytelling talents while entertaining her four children on roadtrips with the tales she learned from her elders, Kathy has traveled widely for years now, taking her stories, tunes, toys, and quilts to many people and introducing them to the Appalachian folk heritage.
Called one of the distinct “Voices of America” by The Smithsonian and Folk Master by the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, she has told her stories in a wide variety of places, from schools and libraries to Al Gore’s front porch and China.
Featured Readers & Tellers:
4:30 Beth Wellington, poetry
4:45 Michael Abraham, excerpts from his new book, Providence, VA
5: 00 Elias Simpson, poetry
5:15 Elizabeth McCommon, essay
5:30 George Norton, vignettes on poverty in developing countries
5:45 Anna Hawthorne, humorous essay
6:00 Chelsea Adams, poetry
6:15 Kathy Coleman, coal region storyteller, past storytelling ambassador to China
– Submitted by Su Clauson-Wicker
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