The Women’s Storytelling Festival, hosted by Better Said Than Done, will take place March 24 to 26, 2023, in person at The Old Town Hall, 3999 University Drive, Fairfax, VA. The festival will also be live-streamed online. Showcasing a wide range of storytelling styles, the 2023 festival features 15 storytellers performing in-person, 5 storytellers performing in a virtual-only showcase, and 7 storytellers competing in the People’s Choice Storytelling Contest, in-person and online. All ticket holders, whether in-person or virtual, can watch the festival videos for one month after the festival concludes.
For schedules, other details, and tickets, go online here.
The 27 storytellers in the 2023 Women’s Storytelling Festival are coming from California, Connecticut, Virginia, and many states in between. They will be sharing personal stories, folk tales, and stories of adventure. Some of them are new-ish to storytelling, and some have been performing for over 20 years. Among the festival performers are authors of books, creators of CDs, stars of TV shows, podcasters, and contributors to Risk!, Stories from the Stage, and The Moth storytelling shows.
Storyteller Lyn Ford (OH) describes the Women’s Storytelling Festival as an event “where the voices of women are unconditionally honored, valued, and recognized as limitless in their scope and power.” Virtual showcase storyteller Rachel Ann Harding (Longmont, CO) adds, “Women have unique wisdom and expression in storytelling. I appreciate the festival’s celebration of women’s voices in the art form.”
“I performed with the Women’s Storytelling Festival online in 2021, and it was a profound experience,” returning storyteller Mo Reynolds (Rexburg, ID) adds. “The stories and the women and the community that was created over a weekend stunned me. The lineup of talent was remarkable, as was the generosity of the audience–and that was all through a computer screen. There was such a variety of voices and styles, I was humbled to be a part of it and thrilled to be invited back again.”
The Women’s Storytelling Festival kicks off Friday, March 24, 2023, at 5 pm ET, with our virtual showcase, and the in-person storytelling begins at 7 pm ET. The festival concludes Sunday, March 26, 2023, at 6 pm.
Early-bird pricing for a full festival pass, effective through February 27, 2023, is $30 for a virtual ticket and $50 for an in-person ticket. Starting February 28, 2023, virtual tickets will be $40, and an in-person ticket will be $60. There will also be one-day in-person passes available at the door for $35 per day. Those who only want to watch and vote in the People’s Choice Story Contest can purchase a virtual-only ticket for the contest for $23.
“There’s something about bringing women together to speak our truths, in all our diversity, that is very powerful,” says Cindy Rivka Marshall (Newton, MA). “While we all may have a variety of stories in our repertoires, we make choices about what to tell depending on the context. A Women’s Storytelling Festival brings forth an expansive sense of women’s lived experience and creativity.”
As to why we still need a festival for women, Stacy Parish (Appleton, WI) explains, “Because women’s voices MATTER. Connection matters. And women lifting other women up MATTERS.”
Festival tickets are on sale here. The stories are intended for a mature audience; people of all gender identities are welcome to attend.
When asked what the audience can expect, storyteller Laura Deal (Boulder, CO) says, “Though storytellers have long known it, science has only recently shown how the audience’s brains and breathing sync up when we’re all experiencing the same story. The shared experience of an art form that goes back into human pre-history is not only entertaining but builds our compassion as we find ground where we can all stand, recognizing each other as fully human. It’s not only fun, but it’s also good for our brains to participate in this ancient and uniquely human experience.”
Jennifer Munro cautions, “Don’t come with any preconceived notions about what to expect and be prepared to leave profoundly transformed.”
Better Said Than Done defines storytelling as the art of performing a story in front of a live audience. Storytelling is a performance, an art, a form of entertainment, and, from our mouths, a reality the audience will not forget. Better Said Than Done, Inc., was launched in May 2011 by Jessica Piscitelli Robinson, to bring the art of storytelling to Northern Virginia. For more information on upcoming shows, storytellers, or workshops, please go online.
Festival attendees will find a range of stories and storytelling styles featuring diverse experiences and cultures. Learn more about the festival’s 27 storytellers here.