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Tell Me a Story 

State of the Arts

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Compact discs had not yet been invented when Tim Jennings first released his telling of “Weatherbeard” and other folk stories on cassette 25 years ago. But any recording at all is advanced technology compared with the utterly timeless tales this central Vermont storyteller spins with such ease. Jennings possesses a warm baritone that shape-shifts to the voices of every character in his fantastical stories, from a thunderous boom to a bloodcurdling growl to a squeaky scritch. His animated storytelling, captivating to listeners of all ages, has in more recent years been accompanied by the harp and voice of his wife and performance partner, Leanne Ponder. But, before they became a duo, “Weatherbeard” was one of Jennings’ signature solo tales, presented at storytelling festivals and schools around the country as well as on National Public Radio.

The Norwegian classic is “the oldest story I know,” says Jennings. The new 25th-anniversary edition on CD offers the dramatic narrative anew, along with three other stories and two musical interludes. Jennings and Ponder present these and more in three performances celebrating the CD — a stocking stuffer! — this week.

Weatherbeard & Other Folk Stories

Tim Jennings and Leanne Ponder perform Friday, December 10, 7 p.m., at the Lovin’ Cup Café in Johnson, $7/3.50; Saturday, December 11, 7:30 p.m., at the North End Studio in Burlington, $7/3.50; and Sunday, December 12, 4 p.m., at Sandglass Theater in Putney, $8. Info, 223-9103. www.folktale.net

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Pamela Polston

Pamela Polston

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Pamela Polston is the cofounder, coeditor and associate publisher of Seven Days.

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