Susan Gordon: Storyteller, writer, poet, teacher, & counselor

The best stories ask the best of me.

“Stories invite a listener to enter the tale and run a hand across the fabric of the story, noting the texture beneath fingers and then emerge, asking, ‘How is that story like mine?’” In 1981, I began to tell the traditional and literary stories that tugged at me and realized my listeners saw their own lives and challenges more clearly after hearing a story. Thirty-two years and a hundred stories later, I still know this to be true: the best stories ask the best of us. I currently tell traditional tales and personal stories on stage, in schools, hospitals, colleges, community centers, religious communities and in therapeutic settings.

Examples of my current programs:

Dancing Down Darkness

Come dance down darkness with the storyteller, Susan Gordon. Susan tells a series of stories that show the incredible spirit of her daughter, Liz Gordon. Liz stretched the confines of her life. She loved people, every sort of critter and the untamed places; she danced through a life that was sometimes hard. Liz died suddenly of a heart attack at the age of 34 in 2007.These stories invite every listener to indulge in love.

“This story should be told again and again and again. It is fine art and sacrament and it needs to be heard ‘early and often’ from rooftops, market squares, temples and universities.” ~ Fanny Crawford, storyteller, educator, director of a non-profit

Grimms’ and a Little Bit More

A telling of three Grimm’s tales, the first one, fierce and redemptive, the second two, with heroes who bring laughter as well as cheers. Also included in this set is a Swati fairytale of a child wrapped in a monster’s skin.

“If you want to hear the Grimm Brothers’ tales told at their very best, call Susan Gordon. She knows the depth of these tales and brings forth the power within them.  She helps you understand the tale better than you ever have and leaves you thinking about it days after. The Handless Maiden, The Golden Goose, The Boy Who Set Out to Study Fear: I want to hear Susan tell these tales every year for the rest of my life.” ~ Dr. Margaret Yocom

Dr. Margaret Yocom
Founder: Folklore Studies Program
George Mason University

Each of these story programs has been offered as an evening concert followed by a one or two day workshop where story listeners became storytellers. In the Dancing Down Workshop the participants told stories about people they loved. Following the Grimm telling, the group tackled the telling of traditional tales.

“Susan Gordon holds a safe, tight container which, if you step in, will carry you to amazing discoveries about story, about yourself and the value of telling stories.” ~ Maggie Babb, Reiki Master and the creator of Firedrake Center for the Sacred Arts

Susan has also developed three new eight week classes. Two of them can also be offered as two day workshops.

The first one is Telling It Like It Is, a storytelling class for women. Telling It Like It Is invites the women in the class to explore their lives through the stories they choose to tell. Susan provides resources to help every woman find a story. A range of exercises is offered that will help the women enter their chosen stories while discovering all the ways those tales are templates for our own lives.

The second is Taming the Monster; Reclaiming the Self, an eight week therapeutic group for men and women in recovery from addiction. It uses storytelling, writing, poetry and art in addition to the Twelve Steps to support and sustain the choice to live a life free of drugs and alcohol.

The third is On Becoming, a storytelling class for men and women over the age of 60. Susan writes, as we enter this phase of life, there is an invitation to note the way we have come and what matters to us now. It is a time to explore what we hope to yet accomplish and the legacy we want to leave through a series of exercises that call forth our stories. These stories invite awareness; they will help the listeners recognize the truly heroic journey we embark on in our elder years. We will see how our single story threads weave together a tapestry of meaning.

All of my other offerings can be found here »