In The News

Grimm’s Grimmest: The real story behind favorite fairy tales

This story originally appeared in The MidWeek

DeKALB – The DeKalb Public Library will play host to Judith Heineman and Daniel Marcotte, Road Scholars with the Illinois Humanities Council, for “Grimm’s Grimmest: The Darker Side of Fairytales,” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 13, in the lower level meeting room.

What really happened after Sleeping Beauty was awakened by the Prince’s kiss? “Happily ever after” is only relative, and what relatives inhabit these lurid tales. Listen to the 19th-century tales of the Brothers Grimm as originally intended for adults, transformed through Heineman and Marcotte’s 21st-century interpretations.

The dramatic retellings, some sung as ballads, are accompanied on a 16th-century Renaissance lute and are set to 16th-century French and English ballad tunes. Bruno Bettleheim, in “Uses of Enchantment,” discusses the power of fright in children as a necessary and useful survival tool. Listening to narrow escapes in ghost stories and gothic tales strengthens human survival instincts, justifying the enjoyment we have always shared in hearing a good scary story.

Marcotte holds degrees in voice performance, musicology, and early music, and has performed Celtic and Renaissance music throughout the country. He has studied with many early music artists, including Frank Wallace and Nancy Knowles, Ron McFarlane, Ellen Hargis and Lyle Nordstrum.

Heineman is a storyteller, producer and teacher who has been selected as an Illinois Humanities Council Road Scholar and an Illinois ArtsTour and Residency Artist. She co-chaired the July 2003 National Storytelling Conference in Chicago, and presented a workshop on Tale Variants at the 2004 National Conference in Bellingham, Washington. She is the producer of The Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival and Tellabration, has created programs for numerous museums, festivals and schools and has appeared at the Chicago Humanities Festival.

This is a free event and no registration is necessary.