Carolyn Evans, a professional Black history storyteller and actress, is bridging the gap between generations by continuing the tradition of storytelling. Growing up in New York, Evans discovered her love for storytelling as a young girl, when she would entertain her family with songs, stories, and dancing. As a young adult, she was granted opportunities to reenact historical black women, beginning with Sojourner Truth’s legendary “Ain’t I A Woman” speech. Today, Evans has performed at historical museums across the country, and even the renowned Apollo Theater.
In an exclusive episode for Black History Month on JARO’s podcast, Tomeka Winborne spoke with Carolyn Evans to learn how she became a professional storyteller and the significance of keeping the tradition alive within our society. “It’s important to tell the stories because it reminds us of who we are, what we have, and our strengths,” said Evans. “It’s our creativity. It’s important to continue our tradition.” Later, Evans provides listeners with moving reenactments as Sojourner Truth and Harriet Tubman, narrating their hardships and courageous fight for freedom.
Evans’ Women Who Could’ve Sung The Blues But Didn’t series celebrates strong Black women in history. Through it, the gifted storyteller has performed as Mamie Till, the mother of Emmett Till, and Mary Fields, who was the first African-American female star route mail carrier in the country. She’s also reenacted the stories of women slaves who escaped to freedom, including Sarah Margru Kinston and Leer Green. Black history icons and unsung heroes live on through Evans’ passionate performances.