Rita Cox - Wit and Wisdom
For decades, Rita Cox shared her extensive story repertoire around the world in community settings and on professional tours. Now, this award-winning master storyteller shares some of these magical tales on her first album, Wit and Wisdom.
This two-disc collection of Afro-Caribbean stories is infused with Rita’s Trinidadian cultural history and her captivating storytelling style. Disc 1 showcases the much-loved trickster tales of Anansi, brought to the Caribbean by slaves from West Africa and passed on orally through generations. Disc2 is devoted to legendary tales about how and why things came to be, and to supernatural stories whose characters’ names reflect the early French colonial influences.
Rita draws from her deep knowledge of oral tradition, and is beloved for her storytelling. This very special collection will resonate with those who know Rita from her long career as a librarian and literacy advocate, and is sure to captivate new fans everywhere.
The production of this album and the accompanying podcast, Rita Cox: The Gently Echoed Music was generously supported by the Ontario Arts Council.
Additional support came from the Flavelle Family Foundation, and StorySave's and Rita's many fans.
About Rita Cox
Rita Cox is an award-winning librarian, teacher, author and master storyteller who has performed across North America, in Europe, Brazil and the Caribbean, on stage, radio and television. During her 35-year career as a librarian with the Toronto Public Library, Rita created several groundbreaking community programs that remain active today. She also established the Black Heritage and West Indian Collection, now known as The Rita Cox Black and Caribbean Heritage Collection, which has become one of the most comprehensive collections of its kind in Canada. Through these and other initiatives, Rita continues to promote multiculturalism and literacy through the arts.
Rita continues to be a sought-after public speaker, and is the recipient of many awards, including the Black Achievement Award, the Caribbean Tourism Lifetime Achievement Award, and her appointment as a Member of the Order of Canada.
Rita’s work preserving and promoting Caribbean and African cultural heritage has always informed her storytelling and is the inspiration for this, her first storytelling album, Wit and Wisdom. It’s an album that demonstrates oral traditions of the African diaspora, and also celebrates the importance and universality of storytelling itself.
To learn more about Rita, her life and work, listen to StorySave's podcast episode about Rita on Balado: The StorySave Podcast. It's called Rita Cox: Gently Echoed Music. If you like what you hear, subscribe, so you never miss new episodes!
During our podcast interview with Rita, she told us many stories that are not on her album. You can listen to her tell one of those bonus stories here. It's called Lord of the Deep.