Art of Storytelling – Family Events
Tales Under the Stars
Grab a blanket and enjoy a captivating evening of stories from around the world! Sharing tall tales and folklore are renowned storytellers Mama Koku, Carrie Sue Ayvar and Lela Lombardo. In honor of this year’s exchange partner, there will be a Flamenco performance by Gyspy Cat on the beautiful grounds of the Deering Estate.
All performances begin at 7 p.m.
Tuesday, April 9
Key Biscayne Branch – Mama Koku
Wednesday, April 10
Miami Lakes Branch – Mama Koku
Thursday, April 11
West Dade Regional – Mama Koku
Tuesday, April 16
Coral Gables Branch – Carrie Sue Ayvar
Thursday, April 18
Kendale Lakes Branch – Lela Lombardo
Tuesday, April 23
Deering Estate – Flamenco Dancing
Wednesday, April 24
Arcola Lakes Branch – Lela Lombardo
Lela Lombardo, Performance Artist
Lela Lombardo is a multi-disciplinary performing artist of theatre, music and dance, and founder of Higher Ground, a community dance company. Lela’s interest lies in exploring the identity of nature, race relations, anthropology and the environment. She uses the arts to foster social and personal change with a number of groups including, at‑risk youth, the homeless population, the elderly, recovering addicts and women. Lela brings enthusiasm to communities across South Florida with her knowledge and command of the African drum beat.
Mama Koku, Storyteller
African American storyteller Donna Kokumo Buie a.k.a. Mama Koku is a master storyteller, children's writer and educator. Mama Koku graduated with honors from North Carolina Central University, majoring in Theatre Arts with concentrations in Performance and Education. During her studies, she received several awards from both the Education and Drama departments for outstanding achievements in scholarship, performance and service. Mama Koku is a member of the Kuumba Storytellers of Georgia, the National Association of Black Storytellers, the Southern Order of Storytellers and is the official teller for the National Black Arts Festival’s Children’s Educational Village.
These two Mini-Festivals will give you a taste of what’s in store on Festival Day! Activities include a special Spanish craft, face painting, a Spanish guitar performance, a Flamenco demonstration and lots of multi-cultural stories. Be in on the fun!
Saturday, March 30, 10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 20, 10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Carrie Sue Ayvar, Storyteller
Growing up surrounded by stories, Carrie Sue Ayvar learned early on about the power of the oral tradition and its capacity for healing, inspiration, education and entertainment. When Carrie Sue discovered that there were others who had not heard a classic story – read a few maybe, but not experienced the rich oral practice of storytelling – she knew she had found her calling.
Today, Carrie Sue is a nationally acclaimed storyteller dedicated to preserving and promoting the art of storytelling. Sharing her stories in both English and Spanish, she connects people, languages and cultures through her tales.
Gary Midnight, Magician
Master of illusion, clairvoyance, telekinesis, and mind reading, Magician Gary Midnight mesmerizes his audiences in spectacular, mystifying performances. One of today's most sought-after entertainers, Gary leaves audiences spellbound with his amazing gifts of illusion and sleight‑of‑hand. Gary’s shows are performed in the manner of a fantastic rock concert. It promises to be the most magical experience of your life!