It’s Library Week! Bring on the Burlesque! Wait… What?

It’s Saskatchewan Library Week! Hooray! Bring on the Burlesque! Wait… What… back that up again…

Let me explain.

This evening at Lydia’s Pub on broadway, the Saskatoon Public Library brought us an evening of story tellers. The annual event Stories in the Bar brought us all story tellers for all ages, and tastes.

Yes, yes, the burlesque, it is a form of story telling… I’ll get to that.

The gracious and charming Jenny Ryan hosted and with some great improv comedy (I’m on rollerskates!) introduced the acts and had give aways. Guess which famous movie librarian and get a romance novel. Titles with the words, forbidden, desire, Ramone, billionaire, brides on the run… Lots of fun. Anyways, onto the acts!

Lori Tkachuck from the librarys children department brought the slightly turned fairy tale of Sleeping Ugly. A winding tale with many parables and as all good fairy tales go, come with a good morale.

Shannon Swekla, former children librarian, (as described as Mother Goose meets Captain Morgan) brought out finger puppets. (Okay, the burlesque, just wait, I’ll get to it.) Suddenly I’m drinking a pint of Alexander Keiths Red, and the entire bar is doing kindergarten singalongs. I can almost feel the glaring stare of Mrs. Yaworski from beyond the grave giving me a stern look. Not because I was drinking beer, but I was making notes and not singing along. Needless to say, it was fun.

Then there was another act, and then a quick break.

Curtis Peeteetuce brought us some heartfelt and very personable stories from his life. Great guitar playing, and brought the story of his ‘Great-Great-Great Grand Uncle Allmighty Voice’. Even he had problems figuring out the connection. A great song inspired by the man and the story of freedom.

One of the virutal reference librarians, Joe Geary brought us a fairy tale. Not the cheerful Disney everything is sparkly, and songs about happiness. This was Grimm’s Fairy tales material. He calls himself the Story teller to the Broken-Hearted. At first, I thought, wow, Saskatoon Public Library cloned Garrison Keillor! But no, Joe is a great story teller, and left me a little chilled. You couldn’t hear the crowd breathing, he was that good of a story teller. Cheers.

Don’t worry, I’ll get to the burlesque, just wait for it. Sheesh! It was really good, but just wait for it!

Saache Heinrich (pronounced Sage… I think) another librarian, the Childrens Librarian for the Wheatland Regional Library. A new piece from her, as she brought out her fiddle and played and told the tale of the young girl learning music. I hear the tones, and I’m six years old, my Nana (great grandmother right from Scotland) is telling me a story of fiddles, and how the song can entrance and captivate people. The song itself is a story. Great blend of music and story.

Then there was the Karpinka Brothers, great sounds. First impression was very influenced from Barenaked ladies and from other great canadian acts. Also reflected how they plan to tour libraries. Great songs, catch their next show if you can.

Oh yes, what was I forgetting… Nothing. The Rosebud Burlesque had three numbers, and as always, just like my hints throughout this blog… It’s the tease that pleases. You may think burlesque is about sex, but it’s not. It’s everything but. The Queen of Tarts amazed us, as she did find her tarts. (Decalled pasties for the win.) As well, Miss Manners had a nice day in the park. And there was the beat poetry of a turtle, who had problems getting out of his shell. That’s right, his. Something for the ladies. Which was the most crowd pleasing as the majority of the crowd were women. The beauty of burlesque is that it is story telling. It’s tongue in cheek, it’s teasing, it’s comedy. It’s local artists, and there isn’t enough support for them in these days of instant download entertainment. Get outside, take in a talk or music show.

A lot of librarians and friends thereof and it was not the usual crowd at Lydias, but it does indicate a new push in the right direction for libraries. They are now going beyond the stereotype. They are high tech with free wifi. They have an impressive dvd collection. Want audiobooks for your ipod? They have downloadable versions that expire! It’s these little events that help bring exposure to what the public library system has become. Modern. Fun. A little bit of Librarians Gone Wild tonight? Maybe, maybe not, but if anything, I had a great time.

I’m still here,

P.S. By the way, ran into the ever funny Dave aka @mmmerf afterwards. Great guy, really funny, did a bang up job at Barcamp Saskatoon 2010. Check his stuff at his Blog in Progress at Our Story So Far…

P.P.S. This makes my 750words for today. for all your instant get your journalling done for the day website.

P.P.S. If any of the librarians or speakers want their websites featured here, please drop me a note! Real artists fear obscurity!

Wait for it…