Francisco ‘Cisco’ Guevara, local storytelling legend, owner of Los Rios River Runners and multigenerational New Mexican storyteller. Courtesy/SOMOS
Pat McCabe (Weyakpa Najin Win, Woman Stands Shining) is a Diné (Navajo) mother, grandmother, activist, artist, writer, ceremonial leader and international speaker. Courtesy/SOMOS
For the past 20 years, SOMOS (The Society of the Muse of the Southwest) has hosted The Taos Storytelling Festival, which has become an annual mecca for storytellers and lovers of stories of all ages.
This year, the 21st Annual Taos Storytelling Festival is set to take place online the weekend of Oct. 9-10 and will once again feature national and internationally-renown tellers.
The theme is Sacred Land, Water & Sky. Visit https://somostaos.org/taos-storytelling-festival for more information and to purchase tickets for the various events via the schedule.
The 2020 lineup includes Gayle Ross, an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation and a direct descendant of John Ross, Principal Chief of the Cherokee during the infamous “Trail of Tears”. Ross has opened for such distinguished speakers as Maya Angelou, N. Scott Momaday and Alice Walker, and she has appeared with such noted Native American artists as Rita Coolidge, Wes Studi, Kevin Locke and John Trudell.
Internationally acclaimed musician and composer Peter Buffet featured Ross and her stories in his epic stage performance “500 Nations,” based on the CBS mini-series produced by Kevin Costner.
Joining the main event is Francisco “Cisco” Guevara, local storytelling legend, owner of Los Rios River Runners, and multigenerational New Mexican. Guevara will be back for his 17th appearance with the Taos Storytelling Festival. Guevara draws his outrageously true stories from his Hispanic and Indian heritage, and from his dynamic experiences as a river guide over the last quarter century.
Pat McCabe (Weyakpa Najin Win, Woman Stands Shining) is a Diné (Navajo) mother, grandmother, activist, artist, writer, ceremonial leader, and international speaker. She is a voice for global peace, and her paintings are created as tools for individual, earth and global healing. She draws upon the Indigenous sciences of Thriving Life to reframe questions about sustainability and balance, and she is devoted to supporting the next generations, Women’s Nation and Men’s Nation, in being functional members of the “Hoop of Life” and upholding the honor of being human.
The winner of the StorySLAM on Friday evening will join the seasoned storytellers for the main event – the winner will be selected by Gayle Ross, Pat McCabe and Cisco Guevara.
Jan Smith, SOMOS Executive Director “A good storyteller can weave you through the spectrum of emotions and create an image that returns months and years later; a line, metaphor, or moral that sticks with us – an intellectual anchor that we can draw upon,” SOMOS Executive Director Jan Smith said. “Being engaged with a fine storyteller is a workout for the soul, a bright mode of communication and connection in this our world. SOMOS has created an annual event that provides just this kind of outlet and opportunity.”