Real People, Real Stories Series

“Storytelling: The World’s Second Oldest Profession.”
– Danny Harris, Storyteller

“Every story well-told changes both the teller and the listener.”
– Ina Chadwick, MouseMuse Productions

“There is no agony like bearing an untold story inside of you.”
-Maya Angelou

Across culture and time, the sharing of stories is a constant.

Whether to fulfill our desire to communicate, connect, or attempt to grasp where we come from, storytelling is an important aspect of the human experience.  It can quiet anxiety, while at the same time allow us to “hear” self-reflection.

Storytelling is at the core of film, theatre, and music– of everything that we do at The Bijou Theatre.

It is vital to who we are, how we define ourselves, express ourselves, and make sense of our realities.

What is it about storytelling that is so vital to our species?

As a student of “RadioLab” I explored this question in as many contexts as possible:  Science, philosophy, history, anthropology and art.  Thanks to my good friend, the Internet, I found some meaningful musings to share with you on the subject:

Video: Phil Kaye on Why We Tell Stories/ Exchanging Narratives
“We like to think we can plot our lives out but there is this big, deep unknowing out there…this deep chance.  And I think…that makes us feel vulnerable, it’s scary, and in the face of that great vulnerability that’s where that impulse to tell stories comes from.  To share, connect, to figure out what it is to feel alive”

Video:  Why We Tell Stories:  The Science of Narrative
“Stories have existed in many forms—cave paintings, parables, poems, tall tales, myths—throughout history and across almost all human cultures. But is storytelling essential to survival? Join a spirited discussion seeking to explain the uniquely human gift of narrative—from how neurons alight when we hear a tale, to the role of storytelling in cognitive development, to the art of storytelling itself, which informs a greater understanding of who we are as a species.”

Click to watch

Video: Author Margaret Atwood on Why We Tell Stories
“Language is one of the most primary facts of our existence.  It’s something that you say, what is human? …it’s right dead, smack in the center of what it is to be human, the ability to tell a story. “

Click to watch

Upcoming Storytelling Events at The Bijou Theatre

In constantly expanding our scope at The Bijou Theatre as a space for a plurality of arts, and in exploring the deeper roots of storytelling, we have connected with Ina Chadwick’s MouseMuse Productions to provide powerful programming.

The upcoming series organized by Chadwick is storytelling in its purest form. As MouseMuse’s tagline reads, “Real People.  Real Stories.” The events will showcase engaging, funny, brave and thoughtful storytellers whether they are onstage as an ensemble, or solo, their stories can help us understand ourselves, laugh at, and have compassion for the human experience, and possibly metabolize trauma into wellbeing.

“Under the Covers”
September 29th, 8:00pm
Jill Jaysen’s Center Stage Theater’s original work, written and performed by women throughout Fairfield County, many of whom have played to sold-out audiences at the Westport Country Playhouse in The Vagina Monologues. Under the Covers is an ensemble dramatic performance by women for all sexes. There is tragedy and triumph. Real-life stories. Poignant and honest. No socio-economic or age barriers keep these women from the elixir of telling the truth. They have something to say.

“The Untouchables”
October 18th, 7:30pm
No one has blown away the highly discerning Moth judges as many times as Adam Wade has.   Eighteen-time Moth slam winner, Adam Wade has gone on to be a Storyteller on late night TV and has been featured in TED videos as a motivational speaker who “tells” from the heart.  Join a riveting round-robin of Storytellers who will try to keep up with Adam Wade in ten minute tales told from the heart: Joe Limone, Bill Bosch, and MouseMuse’s very own Ina Chadwick.

Ina Chadwick at the Fairfield Museum

“Totally Kimleigh”
Two shows!  December 8th, 2:00pm & 8:00pm
In a powerful, one hour theater piece, Kimleigh Smith takes the audience through a journey that is totally uplifting, totally heartbreaking, and totally powerful.