You won’t want to miss a single moment of the Cumberland Mountain Storytelling Festival this year because the storytellers will bring out hilarious tales that you will be chuckling over for a long time. Humorist Sam Venable, a well-known columnist for the Knoxville News-Sentinel, will emcee the two Friday sessions. On Friday, you will hear the Edu-Tellers (tandem storytellers Betty and Mike Roe) tell the true tale of the Tennessee man who wanted to attend his own funeral – and did. Find out how Pam Petty’s brand new refrigerator got a dent in it – surely not from the owner’s head!
On Saturday evening at 7 p.m., listen to Sheila Kay Adams sing some funny old ballads as she plays her banjo. Some of those old ballads may be a bit racy, so bring the kids on Friday. Sheila Kay will also regale you with personal experience stories about her interesting collection of relatives. Sam Venable will add his own humorous spin to tales at both the Friday matinee and Friday evening shows. Suzie Randleman and Quackers the duck will provide a lively opening on Friday evening, and Sheila Kay Adams may pop in at the Friday evening show to do a brief teaser story to entice you to her Saturday evening performance.
New this year will be members of the Crossville-based Cumberland Mountain Storytelling Guild taking the stage for the first time at the Friday Matinee performance and as a warm-up for Saturday evening at 6 p.m.
On Saturday afternoon Sheila Kay Adams will present the Lucille Hofmann Storytelling Workshop, a free workshop for teens and adults named for our local story lover who instigated the development of an annual storytelling event and has served on the planning committee each year. The workshop will be held from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. at Marketplace Café in Fifth Street Marketplace on West Avenue.
All stage performances will be held at the Palace Theatre at 72 S. Main Street in Crossville. The Friday Matinee will begin at noon, and the Friday evening performance begins at 7 p.m. The Saturday evening performance begins at 6 p.m. with the Cumberland Mountain Storytelling Guild Members and Sheila Kay Adams’s presentation beginning at 7 p.m., after a brief intermission. Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for students for the evening performances. Tickets for the Friday Matinee are $7 for adults, and $1 for students. All tickets are on sale at the Palace box office or by calling the Palace at 484-6133. The Palace can now take credit cards, so give them a call or go online at www.palacetheatre-crossville.com and get your seats reserved now.
Sponsors for the Cumberland Mountain Storytelling Festival include Dr. Stewart Galloway and Cumberland Eye Care, the Marketplace Café, Cumberland County Bank, Bilbrey Funeral Home, Big Boys BBQ, and Gwin Realty. This event is made possible by funding from the Tennessee Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Cumberland Mountain Storytelling Festival is presented by the Performing Arts Alliance of Rural Tennessee (PAART).