Centretown storyteller helps bring an ancient tale to life

Kim Kilpatrick is a Centretown resident and professional storyteller.

Kim Kilpatrick is a Centretown resident and professional storyteller.

by Kim Kilpatrick

I grew up listening to stories, audio books, and was read to regularly, partly because my family is full of storytellers and readers.

Also because I have been totally blind since birth.

The sound of words, the pictures they paint, the way they bring me into other worlds, other eras, other places, and other times: I loved all of this more than TV and more than movies. I did not have to ask anyone what was going on. I could imagine for myself, and the words told me.

When I became a professional storyteller, over ten years ago, it felt like the most natural thing in the world to be. I create and tell stories of all types, including autobiographical, historic, folk tales, and epic material.

My first real journey into epic material happened in 2012, when I was one of 18 storytellers bringing Homer’s Odyssey to life at the NAC Fourth Stage.

The voices of each teller brought the story forward as it was meant to be heard, bringing the audience and tellers together in a unique and amazing experience—it was something I will never forget.

Also, working closely with a wonderful large team of storytellers is an amazing experience. Storytelling can sometimes be mostly an individual undertaking.

Now, we are back to Homer again: this time, The Iliad. It will be performed by 18 storytellers, again at the NAC Fourth Stage on June 14, 2014.

When I first read the Iliad, it did not entrance me as The Odyssey did. But when we had our full run-through of the story on May 24 and 25, I was captivated and moved. The story came to vivid life for me and everyone in the room. The characters are complex. The story is exciting. The different voices of each teller weaves a wonderful tapestry of sound.

Again, I am honoured to be part of such a talented team of artists.

This is a once in a lifetime experience. Don’t miss it!

The Iliad is a production of Ottawa Storytellers and two women productions.