The Treasure Valley’s “Story, Story Night,” a monthly evening of performance storytelling and fun community connection, is evolving and growing after six successful years.
Over that time, it’s moved to several venues, had two artistic leaders and expanded to include celebrity story nights. In 2013, it was one of three Idaho arts groups to receive The Robert Rauschenberg Foundation’s SEED Grant, unrestricted operating capital for financial support to ensure growth and longevity.
Now, new artistic director Jodi Eichelberger is at the helm and is taking the nonprofit in new directions.
Eichelberger is particularly qualified for the position with nearly 25 years as a master puppeteer and actor, both artistic pursuits that require a deep understanding of story. He also is a former storyteller for “The Moth” in New York City. He moved back to his hometown of Boise in 2014.
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This season, “Story, Story Night” will move to a new venue at JUMP (Jack’s Urban Meeting Place), 1000 W. Myrtle St., in Downtown Boise. It will shift from the last Monday of the month to the last Tuesday. The season opener is Tuesday, Nov. 29.
The first installment — “Jump!” — will feature a major coup with JUMP founders Maggie Soderberg and Scott Simplot sharing their personal story of how the JUMP building came to be.
Others on the program are base jumper Tom Aiello, who will talk about the botched landing that put him in the hospital for three months, and teenager Talon Owens, whose attempted suicide was stopped by a seemingly miraculous intervention. You can read an Idaho Statesman story about Owens here.
The community “Story Slam” will happen in between the featured storytellers. Each “Story, Story” performance will be hosted by Eichelberger and will feature live musical guests. First up is Marimba Boise.
Eichelberger also is launching a “Story, Story Night” radio show for “Stray Theatre” on Radio Boise at 5 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 27. It will feature past “Story, Story Night” tales from the six-year archive, followed by an interview with that storyteller to find out what happened after he or she shared their story. The first episode is from 2011’s “HOOKED,” with storyteller and former ChapStick addict Elisabeth McKetta.
“Story, Story” also will produce a monthly “Story Studio” at JUMP to help coach storytelling skills for the Story Slam. The next one is from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 17. Click here for a schedule.
“Story, Story Night” season opener
7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29; doors open at 6 p.m., JUMP, 1000 W. Myrtle St., Boise. $12 in advance at StoryStoryNight.org. All ages (parental guidance suggested).