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Davis back by popular demand

Ask Sarah Bowden of Brundidge about storytelling and she’ll tell you two things.

First, she’ll say she is a storytelling convert and, then, that Donald Davis is hands-down her favorite storyteller.

“I’ve always been an avid reader but I had no interest in professional storytelling,” Bowden said. “I didn’t really know what storytelling was about, out of ignorance maybe. I just didn’t think I would like it. But, now, I wouldn’t miss the Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival for the world. I look forward to it all year long.”

For the Bowdens, storytelling is now a family affair.

“My son is coming from North Carolina to the storytelling this weekend,” she said.

“In fact, all five of my children and their families are coming — from different places. Our whole family will be here.”

Bowden can’t put a finger on why Donald Davis is her favorite storyteller.

“He’s just incredible,” she said.

“I can relate to everything he tells. I enjoy the stories that are funny but I also like the ones that are nostalgic and make you remember.

“I also like the ones that are kind of sad. There’s nobody better than Donald Davis, but I’m also looking forward to the other tellers that will be here. It’s going to be a great weekend of storytelling.”

About 400 high school and college students will have a rare opportunity to hear the dean of storytelling spin his craft on Friday at the Trojan Center Theater on the campus of Troy University.

Donald Davis will present two concerts at the university. Students from Charles Henderson, Pike County and Goshen high schools will attend the 9:30 a.m. concert, and Troy University students will attend the 11 a.m. concert.

Dr. David Dye’s oral interpretation class at Troy University will be among the university classes that attend the storytelling concert.

“I want my students to be able to hear a master storyteller at work,” Dye said. “Donald Davis is a seamless storyteller. He touches the heart and the mind. He is able to put together a program that lets us laugh, allows us to discover, to feel deep emotions and, at the end, say I understand what this is all about. Amen.”

Dye said Davis takes his audience on a spiritual journey like no other.

“It is said that a story is not finished until it’s heard. Only then can it be fully appreciated.

“Reading the words doesn’t compare to a story being told by someone who is able to masterfully guide us through the story. Donald Davis is a master of his art.”

Davis and nationally acclaimed storytellers, Kevin Kling, Barbara McBride-Smith and Elizabeth Ellis will be the featured tellers at the annual Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 29 and 30 at the We Piddle Around Theater in Brundidge and the Trojan Center Theater.

Tickets are available for the 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. concerts at the Trojan Center on Saturday.

Other concerts are sold out. Tickets are available at The Messenger in Troy and Rue’s Antiques in Brundidge or by calling 334-735-3125 or 670-6302.