Hello! Welcome to my storytelling and business site. If you are looking for information about my children’s books, please visit www.catweatherillauthor.com
But if you’d like to read more about my storytelling and narrative work – what I do and why I love to do it – you are absolutely in the right place! Let’s begin.
First a question I am often asked…
WHAT IS ‘PERFORMANCE STORYTELLING?’
Sometimes people think storytelling is like acting, but in many ways it is closer to stand-up comedy: a performer uses words to get an emotional response from an audience. The difference is that storytellers work with a wider palette of emotions than comedians. Yes, they can make you smile and laugh – that’s easy! But I make people cry, especially when I tell a personal story.
The truth can be very beautiful. With adults, I don’t use any props or effects. I simply use a combination of voice, physicality and stillness. For me, it’s like setting off on a journey, stepping into another world, and the audience comes with me. We share the emotional ride together.
Cat is one of Europe’s most exciting live storytellers. With her theatrical performance style, fiery female energy and love of emotionally-charged, intimate tales, she brings a gloriously feminine voice to an ancient art. She is strong and sexy, playful and passionate, and performs with extraordinary intensity and focus. Her performances excite on the night and linger long in the memory.
Cat was born and raised in the Celtic crossroads of Britain: Liverpool. Her ancestry is a mingling of Irish, Welsh and English blood. She lived in the hills of Wales for seventeen years, and the landscape of the borderlands continues to dominate the visual landscape of her work.
Cat studied Drama at the University of Hull, and was a professional actor and singer before discovering storytelling in 1997. Championed by the Hay Festival, she quickly established herself as one of the most exciting and distinctive voices of British storytelling. Her relationship with the Hay Festival endures; she has performed more than twenty times at Hay Festival Wales, and guested at Hay Festival Nairobi and Hay Festival Kerala.
Cat has worked with the legendary Crick Crack Club in London and performed several shows at the Barbican. She usually performs solo, but her collaborations include the beautiful and beguiling Queen of the Planets with Daniel Morden, and The Tale of Tom Fortune and the Fearsome Bellowhead with the mighty eleven- piece folk band Bellowhead. She has also worked extensively in Copenhagen as part of Best Tellers, in Austria with Fabelhaft and in India with Teamwork Productions.
She has worked with the British Council to promote British storytelling abroad, including trips to Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Russia. Most recently, she led a Storytelling for Peace Building project in Colombia, working with vulnerable Afro-Caribbean teens in three cities along the Pacific-Caribbean rim.
Cat has trained in Narrative Therapy, and loves working with true life stories. She has created and curated two true-life storytelling clubs: the much-loved Tell Me On A Sunday at the Ikon Gallery in Birmingham, and the Arts Council funded Mee Club at the Herbert Art Gallery in Coventry.
Cat is also a best-selling children’s author, with books translated into ten languages. She is a children’s poet, with poems in anthologies by Bloomsbury, Macmillan and The Emma Press. For adults, she has written for The Times and primetime BBC Radio 4. She is currently completing her first novel for adults, set in Goa.
‘A magical performer’ The Times
‘Audiences are invariably spellbound by her intimate style’ Paris L’Express
‘Cat’s tales are charged with life and delivered with clarity, certainty and skill’ Ben Haggarty, Artistic Director of the Crick Crack Club
‘Some people are born to be performers, and Cat Weatherill is one of them’ The Hindu, India
‘Can make you laugh and cry at the flick of a switch, such is the depth of her emotional palette’ London In Sight
‘When Cat Weatherill steps forward with a narrative, it is an invitation to experience the emotions of her characters and go on a voyage with them’ The Times of India
‘Cat is one of our great storytellers, vivacious and inventive’ Michael Morpurgo, author of War Horse and former Children’s Laureate
‘She has a theatrical background that lends a vividness to the fluid lines of her show and vivacity to the delicate traditional songs she sings’ The Big Issue
‘Describing Cat as a storyteller is akin to describing Everest as a hill’ BJ Burton
‘Now we need a new roof at the Best Tellers – Cat blew it right off’ Kasper Sorensen, BestTellers, Copenhagen
‘Sell out superstar!’ Peter Florence, Festival Director, The Hay Festival
‘Always entertaining, often surprising and challenging, but more than that – she is inspirational’ Francesca Kay
‘Being with Cat is like swallowing sunshine’ Charlie Jordan, Smooth Radio presenter and former Birmingham Poet Laureate