July 11-12, 2015: Around the world in two days, under one sky

Image of dbi blending into her background of words
d’bi young anitafrika
candy royalle
Candy Royalle (Australia)
KW Poetry Slam logo
KW Poetry Slam


Brenda Byers
Brenda Byers









Image of paint brushes in different coloured bottles, with tray for paper painting beside
Ebru paper painting with Teena Lemieux
Campfire Crew
Campfire Crew with Karen Stille and Andrew “Too Tall” Queen
Neruda Arts

When all is said and done

IMG_0915Sometimes it takes a week to catch your breath after an event like we had last weekend. We had a lot of fun, and the good news is that our numbers remained stable, despite the change in date, partner and location in the park.

Our performers worked hard. Our audiences worked hard to listen. Our volunteers certainly had their work cut out for them. And all the details we’d worked on for months came together into two short afternoons of superior storytelling. Thank you for coming out to listen.

Our gifts spread out into the community. There were close to 150 envelopes of “abandoned” art distributed around the city. Our board with all those $5 bills had a few coins left at the end of the weekend. That was an interesting observation: those who left money on the board placed coins (and a few other things I’d rather not mention). Those who needed the money took the bills.

And our Chilean puppeteer, Roberto! What a joy to have him with us this year! He creates magical worlds, imagines stories, and works really hard at his craft. He’s in Ontario until September, so maybe there will be another chance to be spellbound by his performances!

Thank you to Neruda Arts for hosting Latitudes this year. It has been a pleasure working with the foremost arts organizations in this region and beyond. Keep doing what you’re doing, Isabel!

Some opportunities arose from this year’s festival, and we are currently beginning a dialogue about those. Stay tuned, and if you’re interested in playing a role in shaping the future of our fine little festival, please contact us. We’d love to have your fresh perspective and ideas!

Performance schedule now available

Not long now, and it looks like the weather might be in our favour for this weekend! The schedule for the stage performances is now posted, below and here. But here’s a tip. It only shows what’s on stage —  we have lots of little off-stage performances happening during the weekend, and opportunities to be part of big gifts and little gifts throughout, so you have to be there to get the full effect of the celebrations!


The Gift

Been thinking a lot about gifts lately. The festival has been a gift in so many ways. Stories are gifts. A recent video on social media got us thinking about gifts. We’d already arranged for our children’s activities to include abandoned art — a gift back to the community. The kids will make bookmarks — one to keep and one to give away; we’re encouraging them to give away — or abandon — their artwork in the park over the weekend. If you stumble upon an envelope marked as a gift, take it home. It’s yours.

The other gift we’ve been thinking about takes the form of a magnetic board covered in $5 bills. The message: Take what you need. Leave what you can. No questions. Stories welcome.

This gift will mean different things to different people. In a way, if we can allow ourselves to part with $5, with no strings attached, then we can also listen to each others’ stories, no strings attached.

Maybe someone’s story will change that day. We can’t wait to find out.

Anyway, here’s that video.


Stand Up for Mental Health comedy troupe

STAND UP FOR MENTAL HEALTH looks at the stand-up comedy side of mental health, mental illness, recovery, and surviving the mental health system. In Stand Up For Mental Health, created by David Granirer, mental health consumers turn their problems into stand-up comedy, then perform their acts at conferences, treatment centers, psych wards, for various mental health organizations, corporations, government agencies, on college and university campuses, and most importantly for the general public. http://standupformentalhealth.com/

Summer Lights Festival: June 20, 8 p.m.-1 a.m.

Latitudes Storytelling Festival presents Brad Woods and Kevin Morse at Summer Lights Festival this weekend! Look for him in the old Walper Tobacco Shop in downtown Kitchener on Saturday night at 8:30 and 11 p.m.

Brad tells folk tales, literary classics and personal stories all over North America and the UK, for all ages and in every type of venue imaginable.

In 2008 he released his first full-length CD of original material. In 2009, Brad released a follow up CD and kicked off the legendary Mariposa Folk Festival in Orillia with a story from the main stage. In 2010, he had his first telling and listening tour of the UK, and in 2011 had stories featured on CBC Radio One and in the Globe and Mail.

Brad’s style is laidback, and he’s joined by a band member of his other gig, Great Wooden Trio. For more on Summer Lights Festival,  take a look here: http://summerlightsfestival.com/


Trolldom with Sarah Granskou and Amy Scott

Join Sarah Granskou, Amy Scott and their original puppets for TROLLDOM, a musical journey into the hidden world of magical fiddles, sensitive trolls, elves and tree spirits. Drawing on tradition and the depths of a child’s imagination, Trolldom invites audiences to be part of the story, as puppeteers, sound effects, musicians and actors.


JoJo Worthington

Saturday, July 11 — With her infectiously catchy and whimsical melodies, JoJo WORTHINGTON is an award-winning independent experimental folk artist from Waterloo known for her avid songwriting and dynamic use of the ukulele. By using loops, reverbs, delays and even distortion, JoJo creates a euphoric atmosphere that can win the heart of any audience. www.jojoworthington.com