About the Artist

Celebrating the Art, Craft, and Practice of the Oral Tradition of Storytelling

WHAT PEOPLE SAY

Watching McCormack tell her stories was an absolutely magical experience, and her passion for her craft shined through in her performance.

~ Southsider Magazine


I love Halloween, and [Denise's] scary stories, and the telling of them, really heightened the season for me... [She has] a gift....

~ Dom B.

I am old enough to remember Gene London's wonderful show. Denise McCormack's songs and stories remind me of those cozy, fun shows. Get some munchies and pull up a comfy chair. You will smile, sing and maybe, even sigh- but you will definitely enjoy!

~ Karen Maurer, library youth services coordinator, writer, and blogger of children’s literature

Everyone was talking about her tales long after [Denise] left. She was absolutely spellbinding!

~ S. Kuder

ARTICLES & REVIEWS

The Story Behind the Story: Bordentown Storyteller Reflects on Her Art

By Scott Morgan -May 30, 2018

Denise McCormack Brings Old Tales to Life in Storytelling Series

By Victoria McCulley -JULY 6, 2019

Kind Words of Appreciation


from Story Lovers

Hosts George Miller and Kate Scuffle talk with storyteller Denise McCormack about her upcoming events with the Lehigh Valley Storytelling Guild including…

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Artist Bio

McCormack loves to share stories and songs.

Stories, even and especially the simple folk and fable, shine a light on little things that have far reaching implications, including the power to draw us together in community.

Among McCormack's favorites are tales of aged heroes and strong, wise women; creation tales, myths, and epics that speak of values and perseverance; and both prose and poetry that bring to life the magic of our glorious world. Of course, you'll also find her singing ditties with kiddies and offering stories to grow on, too!

McCormack has been a featured teller at local and regional venues, including the National Storytellers Network conferences (KS, CA),NJ Storytelling Festival (Grounds for Sculpture and Howell Living History Farm), and Philadelphia stages (The Rotunda, Parkway Central Library main stage), NYC's Artists Without Borders, Godfrey Daniels (Bethlehem, Pa),and many others.

Workshops and small group or one-to-one coaching sessions on the practice and craft of storytelling and public speaking are lively and insightful.

Among her affiliated roles are: NJ state liaison for the National Storytelling Network, recent past chair and board member of the NJ Jersey Storytelling Festival, president of Patchwork: A Storytelling Guild in the Philadelphia Metropolitan area, member of the board of the Lehigh Valley Storytelling Guild, and recent past editor of National Storytelling League's publication "Story Art." She is also a member of other various and related cultural, educational, and artists organizations.

McCormack holds a B.A. in English and an M.Ed. in TESOL: Language, Learning, and Literacy, besides several certifications and related awards. She is a dedicated lifelong learner with interests in neuroscience, linguistics, history, communications, and marketing, besides mindfulness and general health.

Most recently, her pursuits have reached into the worlds of online and print marketing, as well as audio / video production and editing--all of which rely on creative content and concise communications.

McCormack earned a 2014 Women's Achievement award by the National Association of Professional Women, was editor of NSL's Story Art magazine and chairman and facilitator of the AMK Short Story contest for many years, author of "Don't Let the Best Man Ruin Your Wedding: A Bride's Best Guide for the Best Man's Speech" and several articles related to the art of storytelling, for which Bride magazine noted her as an expert in the field, and has presented various workshops on the importance and application of storytelling for communication, healing, and connection.

McCormack’s mantra: There is a story for every time and purpose under heaven.

Her passion is further invested in her work related to Mother Earth culture, The Story Algorithm, MYOB: Mind Your Own Body, and bridging language gaps.

Artist Statement

Communication is the cornerstone of everything, and stories are the best means of communication. Whether in performance or presentations and work sessions, my mission is to connect with listeners, to bring enlightenment through story, to forge understanding and empathy, and-- sometimes-- to offer a sheer diversion and good belly laugh for life's trials. I believe that we are our stories and that stories are our saving grace.

We connect. We communicate. We understand through story.

Imagine: No one is too young or too old to experience the wonder, magic, and benefits of storytelling.

Stories are my pro-active means to make a difference.

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Statement

I strive to maintain a diverse and respectful community environment where everyone feels included and free from harassment and discrimination. Indeed, such understanding is at the heart of my mission and vision.

Affiliates may be seen as representing me, and I will investigate any reports of impropriety that undermine my core values and will take action to prevent further harm.

Land Acknowledgement

As a step toward honoring the truth and achieving healing and reconciliation, our organization commits to open all public events and gatherings with a statement acknowledging the traditional Native lands on which we stand. Such statements become truly meaningful when coupled with authentic relationships and sustained commitment. We therefore commit to move beyond words into programs and actions that fully embody a commitment to Indigenous rights and cultural equity.

There is a difference between telling stories for pure entertainment and telling stories to hit a nerve.

I like to do both and everything in between.


I love the idea of story.

Stories are everything. They are powerful. They give meaning to life.

Even the composition of story, its elements, gives us a road map to live by. Joseph Campbell, Carl Jung, Vladimir Propp, and others have illuminated our role of hero in our own stories, but more than that, they have laid out our optional roles in the lives and stories of others.

Stories are our human marker. They enable us to experience empathy, to connect, to understand.


Every story is carefully chosen, crafted, and born in the performance, for the audience.

A storytelling performance has the power to hit a nerve, to inspire people to imagine, remember, feel, and connect.

Imagine a tale that recalls an experience.

Your mind lights up. You want to hear more. You want to ask questions. You want to tell your story. You do tell it. Others listen; they really listen. They recognize their own stories, too, and want to share their own versions of the tale.

You listen.

You remember.

You feel.

You connect.

That's what I love about story.