“I live in my head. A lot. I make stuff up, I borrow from old tales, I reinterpret new stories. As a storyteller, I’m a tour guide to that space in my brain. I work without a script, without costumes, without props. When I’m doing it right, listeners laugh, smile, sigh and breathe together, connected in the space of stories. I perform at schools, libraries, festivals, special events, and in my own backyard, literally. My mouthy hand puppets come along to shows for young children. I tell more grownup stories to, well, grownups and older kids. We play together. Apart from being the oldest educational method in the world, storytelling is just plain fun.”
Once upon a time there was a wandering musician named Dan Marcotte who played the lute, sang songs, and loved stories. One evening, he stumbled into a meeting of the Chicago Storytelling Guild and met Judith Heineman, its founder and master storyteller. She was looking for a musician who could play early music for a newly commissioned show by the Oriental Institute Museum at the University of Chicago. Their first and very successful performance together, The Magic Carpet: Songs and Stories from Mesopotamia and Ancient Egypt, began an artistic partnership that has lasted fourteen years and counting.