Local Storyteller Showcase

The Local Teller Showcase features some of Champaign-Urbana’s favorite tellers: Kim Sheahan, Linda Dust, Elaine Bearden, and Sue Searing. All are members of the C-U Storytelling Guild and enjoy telling to audiences of all ages. Come join the fun!

Kim SheahanKim Sheahan incorporates oral traditions into her multicultural programs at the University of Illinois’ Spurlock Museum. She also does freelance storytelling and has performed at storytelling festivals, school assemblies, city-wide celebrations, personal parties, and gatherings of all kinds ever since. Her enthusiasm is both unmistakable and contagious.

Sue SearingSue Searing’s passion for discovering, learning, and telling stories was awakened in mid-life, and now she’s joyfully making up for lost time. She delights in sharing stories from around the world – well-loved fairy tales, eerie ghost stories, and stories that make you think. Originally from Lockport, New York, a town on the Erie Canal, Sue has lived in Champaign since 1997 and works as a librarian at the University of Illinois.



Elaine Bearden


Storyteller Elaine Bearden is a children’s librarian at The Urbana Free Library. She tells personal stories and folktales, accented with music.  Local appearances include the University of Illinois’ Youth Literature Festival, The Very Special Arts Festival, Verde Gallery Teller’s Art series, and most recently, the Indi-Go Gallery.  Since 2005, she has also taught storytelling workshops for teachers on integrating storytelling into curriculum.



Linda DustLinda Dust says that the stories she enjoys the most are the ones that also include music and ballads. She finds that each new story brings new understanding of the traditions of the cultures that have produced these marvelous tales. She has performed in such diverse places as public libraries, schools, service organization banquets, festivals and even at a club in New York City’s Greenwich Village.