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Website/site Web: www.heatherwhaley.ca
Heather is a seasoned versatile storyteller singer-songwriter who performs both traditional and personal stories, bringing them to life through her vibrancy and unique voice. Known for musical storytelling, she tells to all ages and includes songs, chants, original spoken word, verse, poetry, and effectively incorporates props, singing, and playing guitar. She connects well with kindergarten and elementary school children and youth.
Heather also shares stories behind songs which are folk and blues based, and intrigues adults and teens by enlightening them with original lyrics and to the history and passion of traditional ballads. She writes performance memoir pieces: ‘A Load off My Chest’ and ‘When They Came: My Ethnic Family in Story and Song’ and ‘For the Love of Johnny’ have been seen on stage in Toronto at Harbourfront Centre, Daniel’s Spectrum, Gladstone Hotel and the Hard Rock Café. ‘Muskoka Mosquitos’ and ‘Sucker!’ earned positions at the 2016 Storytellers of Canada Conference in Vancouver. Heather has toured nationally and internationally and “on the road” for special events, festivals, cafés and House Concerts.
A recipient of Storytelling Toronto’s Alice Kane and Anne Smythe Awards, Heather also received grants from Storytellers of Canada for Culture Days, and from the former Whitby Race Relations and Diversity Committee and the Whitby Mayor to facilitate school and library programming for the town’s 2005 sesquicentennial. She was the first “in house” storyteller for Whitby Station Gallery’s Arts infused programming Reading the Image for grades 7 & 8 during the month of November 2012, performing three days a week.
Heather is a former Library Assistant of the Whitby Public Library main branch, having worked in Adult Fiction and Children's services, including programming, for thirteen years, and achieved a Southern Ontario Library certificate to manage a small public library after an intensive three year correspondence training program. In 2002 she decided to venture out Freelance to expand her storytelling and music performance opportunities.
Heather has been described as a “consummate performer and workshop leader with a delightful folk style”. She genuinely thrives on reeling her audiences in to sing, participate and simply be with her in the storytelling moment. www.heatherwhaley.ca