A York County Library Presentation   

Performers: 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

Featured artists include:

Willy Claflin, Leeny Del Seamonds, The Storycrafters, The Shady Grove Band,
Darion McCloud, and MadCap Puppets

Festival Tote Bags, T-shirts, Caps & Mugs will be available for purchase.

Willy Claflin
Willy Claflin grew up on Lake Winnipesauke in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire. He spent his childhood day dreaming and wandering through the woods, listening to his father's bedtime stories, and worrying about the wolf under his bed. Studying American and French Literature at Harvard University, Willy made time for performing music and comedy in the Boston-Cambridge folk music scene. He spent a year abroad in Paris, then a post-graduate year in Scotland, where he joined the Edinburgh Folk Song Society and collected a cappella ballads.

By the late 1960's, Willy had turned to teaching and discovered his talent for creative curriculum design. As a classroom teacher during the 1970's, he developed his major puppet characters: Maynard Moose, Boring Beaver, Socklops, and Gorf (Master Flyswatter Percussionist).

Willy has been featured at dozens of regional storytelling festivals and hundreds of schools, libraries, and concert venues. Since moving to San Francisco in 1984, Willy has released nine recordings, many of them national award winners. Maynard Moose: Sleeping Beastly & Other Tales (1992) was picked by the American Library Association as a Notable Children's Recording, as well as chosen for a Parents' Choice Classic Award. The Wolf Under the Bed (1996) won both the Parents' Choice Gold and the ALA Notable Children's Recording Awards. The Uglified Ducky (2002) merited a second Parents' Choice Gold as well as a Storytelling World Award. In 2003, Willy released Where Were You in '72? - Live from the National Storytelling Festival, which also won a Storytelling World Award.

Leeny Del Seamonds
With a face and voice that launched a thousand characters, Leeny Del Seamonds, Master Story Performer™, is a multi award-winning, internationally acclaimed master performer of Hispanic/Latino, original and multicultural stories spiced with exquisite mime, a cornucopia of voices, and love of people. With a twinkle in her eye and fire in her heart, Leeny breathes life into her stories, as she masterfully and effortlessly springs from one story character to another. A dedicated Teaching Artist, Leeny encourages listeners to feel positive about themselves and to rejoice in human and cultural diversity, inviting them to share in her Latin/Cuban-American sense of humor and love of performing.

A Recipient of the Parents’ Choice Gold and Silver Awards, a Storytelling World Winner Award, an iParenting Media Winner Award, and The 2002 National Storyteller of the Year, Leeny Del Seamonds is acclaimed for animated interactive performances and has been a headliner at hundreds of festivals, conferences, community events, corporate functions, museums, liraries, school systems and universities nationally and internationally. Leeny stars in the PBS Television series Ribert & Robert’s WonderWorld, a multi award-winning children’s program airing across the country and around the world.

Her highly acclaimed recording, ¡Ay Caramba! ¡Ay Ay Ay! Cuentos y Canciónes (Latino Stories & Songs)," takes listeners on a journey through Leeny's rich Latino heritage and won a 2003 Parents' Choice Silver Award. Leeny's musical CD, CelloTales: The Melding of Music, Myth & Memories, created and performed with cellist Gideon Freudmann, won a 2004 Parents' Choice Gold Award and a 2005 Storytelling World Winner Award.

The Storycrafters
Barry Marshall and Jeri Burns, PhD have been working together as The Storycrafters since 1991, and have been storytellers for even longer than that. Jeri and Barry believe in the time-tested wisdom of traditional stories, and share that wisdom with today’s audiences. They strive to honor world cultures by telling the old stories in respectful ways, often integrating the musical instruments, songs or dances indigenous to that region. Then of course, look out for their original modern renditions of the oldest stories, some of their most requested material.

The Storycrafters have been recognized nationally and locally, from the prestigious Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award and the Parents Choice Awards, for their storytelling recordings, to Artists of the Year in their county. They perform and teach their art form in schools, libraries, and other venues all over the US and the British Isles. They have been featured performers at storytelling and folk festivals nationally and internationally. Their family radio show, Just Imagine has been showered with awards from the NYS Broadcasters’ Association. Publishers’ Weekly describes them as ‘top-notch family entertainment’.

In addition to being nationally renowned storytellers, they are award-winning radio show hosts, recording artists, writers, and adjunct college faculty at Southern CT State University.

The Shady Grove Band
From the Netherlands to Napa, from Calgary to the Carolinas, The Shady Grove Band has made a tradition of delighting audiences with its unique “new-timey” bluegrass sound. "One of our state's musical treasures," says the Raleigh News and Observer of The Shady Grove Band, whose accomplishments in more than two decades of touring and performing include nationwide appearances on CBS and NBC television, 13 concert tours of Europe, and six CDs that have received airplay literally all over the world. The band is comprised of founding members Jerry Brown, guitar, vocals), and Charles Pettee (mandolin, vocals), along with Adael Shinn (upright bass, vocals), and John Boulding (banjo, dobro, vocals) who together have entertained countless audiences of all ages from North Carolina to the Lincoln Center in New York City. The Shady Grove Band is available for concerts, festivals, school programs, and special events.

Darion McCloud
Darion has a life-long love of the weird from mythology to urban legends to comics. A veteran storyteller of over fifteen years, Darion has told to live, televised, and radio audiences up and down the east coast. Darion is employed as the Outreach Manager with the Columbia Museum of Art. He is the Artistic Director of the critically acclaimed NiA Company, a multi-cultured, multi-ethnic, theatre company. Darion is also a company member of Trustus Theatre where he has both acted and directed, and a member of the South Carolina Shakespeare Company.

Madcap Puppets
Madcap Productions Puppet Theatre is a nonprofit, touring children's theater company which combines giant puppets with actors to create a unique style of puppet theater. Madcap wants to introduce children to a whole new concept of puppetry, one that allows all the elements of theater to be combined in an artistic and educational performance. Now in its twenty-fifth year, the company offers in production both original scripts and fresh adaptations of old tales.

With a new puppet center in Cincinnati, Madcap Productions tours with five companies throughout the Midwest, performing for schools, theaters, libraries and community centers and reaching over 460,000 children each year. Madcap sponsors a local Hats Off Series at its resident theater in the Cincinnati Art Museum in Eden Park. Madcap has also performed for such organizations as the Indianapolis Children's Museum, Huntington Arts Festival, The Cincinnati Historical Society at the Museum Center, Karamu House in Cleveland, The Midwest Puppetry Festival, Chamizal National Memorial Theater in El Paso, and the Cincinnati-Kharkiv Sister Cities Project in Ukraine.

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