Storytelling Festival

In February 2020, AIR4arts presented the 2nd Annual Storytelling Festival, a month-long celebration of the art of storytelling focused on the idea that everyone has a story to tell.

Multiple school performances, as well as workshops for adults, help develop storytelling as well as performances for all ages to enjoy. The closing performance of the Festival showcases a nationally recognized storyteller in partnership with First United Methodist Church Richardson.

Saturday, February 22, 2020

2 pm

Show with local storytellers for all ages, featuring:

Eldrena Douma

Winner of the Tejas Storytelling Association awarded Eldrena with the state’s prestigious John Henry Faulk Award for her significant contribution to the art of storytelling in the southwest.

Storytelling was a way of life in Eldrena’s upbringing. She grew up in New Mexico and Arizona among the Pueblo tribes of the Laguna, Tewa & Hopi. Activities with family and friends included listening to family songs and stories. Eldrena pursued and obtained her master’s degree in elementary and early childhood education to impact the lives that surrounded her. Her experiences as a public school teacher and her unique Native upbringing benefited her tremendously as she began her next journey as a professional storyteller, author, and workshop presenter.

In 1993, she was encouraged to teach through storytelling about her life experiences, sharing the history of the Pueblos and their contributions to our country. Eldrena travels the country offering captivating stories, a variety of recorded music, and historical accounts from Native American tribes. For example, a story presentation, “Bison, Bison,” gives insight into the history of the bison. A workshop, “Creative Spirit,” focuses on imagination, listening, and story crafting using creative thinking. A lecture, “Nampeyo, Her Legacy,” showcases her revival of Hopi pottery.

Jiaan Powers

A master teacher with twenty-two years teaching experience in the public schools, Jiaan (“Jan”) currently tells stories to audiences of all ages, and designs and conducts storytelling workshops. Jiaan tells traditional folktales, literary tales, ghost stories, and snippets from down home which delight and surprise audiences of all ages. A native Texan, Jiaan has been traveling since 1997, providing performances and workshops here and beyond Texas.

Jiaan discovered her passion for storytelling and her talent for connecting students, teachers, and librarians to stories and literacy during her twenty-two years as an elementary teacher. She even created and taught storytelling classes for two of those years! Beginning in 2005 through 2012 Jiaan created curricula lessons for the Dallas Opera thus reinforcing for her the connections with storytelling and specific skills for students as found in Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS).

Today Jiaan’s inspiration thrives in developing new programs with Spike for all audiences and expanding programs for adults.


First United Methodist Church Richardson
Arts & Worship Center
503 N Central Expy
Richardson, TX 75080

view map


$7 per person, adults and children welcome

Tickets may be purchased in advance or at the door.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

7:00-7:45 pm – AIR Time Interview with Elizabeth Ellis, Storyteller

7:45 pm Movie Screening Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)

Alamo Drafthouse Richardson
100 South Central Expressway, #14
Richardson, TX 75080
(SW corner of Belt Line Rd and Central Expy)

Tickets are $5, but include a $5 food/beverage voucher. Reserve your seat in advance or purchase the evening of the event.

Click here for more AIR Time event info and ticket link.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

11:30 am-12:30 pm – Lunchtime Program: Elizabeth Ellis, Storyteller

As a storyteller, Elizabeth Ellis doesn’t mince words. Her stories deliver down-home wisdom, southern style, with hilarity and honesty. Hers is a voice that finds the heart and the funny bone, riveting audiences of every age wherever she goes.

Richardson Public Library
Basement Program Room
900 Civic Center Dr.
Richardson, TX 75080

Cost: Free


The Storytelling Festival is sponsored by Richardson Cultural Arts Commission, Texas Commission on the Arts, Altrusa International of Richardson, First United Methodist Church Richardson.