April 25, 2011

Storytellers join with BBC

The BBC includes Native Circle performers, The Storytellers, in upcoming documentary!
by Laura K. Vannah, M.A.

“Guess who we just got off the phone with?” Ken Quiet Hawk of The Storytellers excitedly said to me.

“The BBC!”

"They want us to be a part of their documentary tentatively entitled “Dinosaurs, Myths, and Monsters”.

James Reid of Blakeway Productions out of London, UK, contacted The Storytellers, Ken Quiet Hawk and Deborah New Moon Rising, at the end of March. He asked if they would be interested in sharing some of their award-winning stories for the documentary which is based on the book Fossil Legends of the Native Americans by Adrienne Mayor.

Mayor is a research scholar at Standford University. She is an independent folklorist/historian of science who investigates natural knowledge contained in pre-scientific myths and oral traditions.

She specializes in ancient history and the study of “folk science”, how pre-scientific cultures interpreted data about the natural world, and how these interpretations form the basis of many ancient myths, folklore and popular beliefs. Her work in pre-Darwinian fossil discoveries in Native America has opened up a new field within geomythology.

When Mayor came across The Storytellers, she contacted Reid and recommended he get in touch with them.

The Storytellers are two-time Native American Music Award-winners for Best Spoken Word. Ken Quiet Hawk has also been nominated in the Best Male category while Deb New Moon Rising has been nominated in the Best Female category.

The Native Circle Touch the Earth Festival has welcomed Ken Quiet Hawk and Deborah New Moon Rising as performers since 2008. Their wonderful stories are included on the Best of the Native Circle Touch the Earth Festival CD.

The Storytellers message, “If the stories die, the culture dies with them,” is a timely one which they continue to spread one story at a time.

Filming will take place with the BBC on April 26 in Auburn NH and will feature stories on Thunder Birds as well as a short interview with The Storytellers where they will discuss the traditions of storytelling and the importance of keeping the oral history alive.

The Storytellers will delight, entertain, and educate young and old alike at this year's festival!

Remember the historic Mexico Point State Park in Mexico NY will once again host the Native Circle Touch the Earth Festival on May 28 & 29 from 12-5pm daily.
For more information on all the festival events and to purchase tickets for the Kick-Off Gala visit www.nativecircle.net or call 315-963-3820.


  1. I am so delighted that you agreed to tell these stories for the BBC documentary!
    By the way, my book "Fossil Legends of the First Americans" is now available in paperback. The first chapter recounts how the Abenaki hunters discovered the first mastodon fossils ever studied in Europe, in 1739. You can see photos of the bones and teeth, now in the paleontological museum in Paris. Europeans thought these were the remains of a still-living creature they called the "Ohio Monster" -- "Meskag-kwedemos" to the Abenaki.
    Adrienne Mayor


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