Once upon a time in West Hartford…

A group of ordinary LGBTQ folk told some very extraordinary stories.

September 10, 2021 / Buzz

Maybe you were one of the lucky ones who witnessed, Tell Me Another—the  LGBTQ+ Experience. Sponsored by West Hartford Pride 2021, it was a captivating evening of mesmerizing storytelling with true tales told live.

During this June Pride event, an audience of approximately 75 were treated to eight storytellers from the Connecticut LGBTQ+ community. The program was the brainchild of organizers Carl Delmolino and Aaron Scott. They are both big fans of storytelling events and wanted to incorporate one as part of the group’s Pride month celebration.

Says Delmolino, “Every culture has its own stories or narratives which are shared as a means of entertainment, education, cultural preservation or instilling moral values. They can be moving and mystical. The LGBTQ+ community is no different. We have our own stories to tell.”

They enlisted the support of Terry Wolfisch-Cole, a master at the art and craft of storytelling. Resident of West Simsbury and founder of Tell Me Another, she teaches others to share their stories effectively for personal and professional success. In addition, Terry is a Moth GrandSLAM champion whose story of running away from home was featured on the Moth Radio Hour and in Readers Digest.

“Everyone has a story to tell”, says Wolfisch-Cole, “and, while our experiences are unique, the emotions that our stories convey are universal. Sharing our stories builds bridges. It teaches us that we aren’t as different from one another as we’ve been taught to think we are.” Scott adds, “I love The Moth-style because its very origin is deeply rooted in our desire to connect with each other through shared experiences in stories.”

All participants were schooled by Wolfisch-Cole in an online workshop to develop their storytelling skills and prepare their narratives. With careful oversight, Terry gently directed the performers in the development of their own stories as well as their deliveries until they were ready for prime time performance.

There were ridiculously romantic fairy tales told that came true. Stories about coming to terms with intractable homophobic family members were shared, too. The audience also heard a shocking tale of a near baseball bat attack that happily went awry. Special guest, Chion Wolf, from NPR’s Audacious and an avid storyteller herself, capped off the evening. She shared the moment of her unplanned and rushed coming out to her parents—literally the day before she was to become front-page news.

During intermission, Patrice Fitzgerald serenaded the audience with several Great American Songbook hits including Blues In The Night, Over The Rainbow and Orange Colored Sky. She was backed up by Richard Leslie on trumpet and Gabriel Lôfvall on piano.

If you’re curious to see what you missed, a video has been posted on the West Hartford Pride 2021 Facebook page. Interested in participating in the future? They plan to repeat the event during Pride in 2022. Follow them on Facebook. Questions? Contact Carl Delmolino at cdelmoli@yahoo.com. Do you want to learn to tell your story or attend a live storytelling show in the near future? Learn more at www.tellmeanotherstories.com

—Paul Whitman

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