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Diane Wolkstein

Diane Wolkstein

"Diane Wolkstein is one of the greatest storytellers in the Western world." --Joseph Campbell


Whether recounting epics or fairy tales, Diane Wolkstein entered and spoke from the heart of each story she told. Her storytelling career began while studying pantomime in Paris, where she also told Bible stories to children. Diane believed that stories can guide us to where our heart wants to lead us. Throughout her many years as a storyteller, right up until her untimely passing in 2013, she was known for her meticulous research, as well as her great range as a storyteller.

In 2007, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg named June 22nd of that year "Diane Wolkstein Day," in honor of Diane's 40 years of storytelling for the people of New York. Since 1967, Diane had occupied a unique place in the world of storytelling and literature. Through her performances, teaching, books, and recordings, she played a major role in the renewed interest in mythology and the modern storytelling movement.


Diane Wolkstein
A Storyteller's Story (Trailer)


Diane was the author of 23 award-winning books, including The Magic Orange Tree and Other Haitian Folktales and Inanna, Queen of Heaven and Earth, as well as numerous CDs and DVDs. Diane toured extensively throughout the world, performing and telling stories and epics, giving keynote speeches, and holding popular workshops on myth and storytelling. She was also the epicycle editor of Parabola Magazine.


Diane Wolkstein
The Magic Orange Tree (Diane Wolkstein in Haiti)



"There's no one like Diane Wolkstein. A totally brilliant performance."
              -- Olympia Dukakis

"Diane Wolkstein is surely one of the great storytellers of the 20th Century, and what she brings to this most ancient of all arts is a deep understanding of the ways of the heart matched with exquisite craftsmanship and unmatchable passion for and skill with language."
              -- Jean Houston

"Wolkstein is a translator -- not merely someone who brings words from one language into another, but a person who can bridge cultures in such a way as to bring understanding -- wit, humor, and moral meaning -- along with the words."
              -- Barre Toelken, President, American Folklore Society

"Diane becomes one with the story, and the story seems to flow from her very being."
              -- Yvonne Young, National Storytelling Journal

Official Site

Diane Wolkstein - The Magic Orange Tree and Other Haitian Folktales, Volume 1
The Magic Orange Tree, Vol. 1

interview -
NY Daily News

review -
Shalom Life

notice -
NY Times