Be a Youth Teller (Open Call)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAInviting Youth Tellers to the 

Story Crossroads Festival

Story Crossroads invites K-12 students from local public, private and home schools to apply to tell stories for the Story Crossroads Festival on May 13, 2020 (as deadline passed for May 15, 2019) with 33 youth spots available. Due by April 1st each year.

Download this pdf or see information below:

One-Page Handout–Inviting Youth Tellers to the Story Crossroads Festival

School Representation:

  • Each school district will determine which youth tellers will apply for the Festival. Email with the student’s name, grade, and school as well as guardian’s email and telephone number.
  • Each district-level storytelling festival is allotted a prorated number of performance time slots in the Festival.
  • Any other Salt Lake County district has slots that vary dependent on applicant scores given by our Board.
  • Public schools outside Salt Lake County as well as private, charter, and home schools are considered collectively and also allotted performance time slots based on applicant scores given by our Board.
  • Each time slot represents one story told by a single student or two students in tandem.
  • Festival is held on a Wednesday in mid-May each year, mainly in the daytime, so students and groups can attend.

 Storytelling Preparation:

  • It is the responsibility of the school and the parents to help the student select and prepare a story for the Festival. These stories must be family-friendly and appropriate for elementary through secondary grades.
  • Youth should receive a minimum of 6-8 hours of development of crafting and performing tales. See the free lesson plans already available representing 6 hours plus assuming at least 2 hours of telling and being coached. This can be done as an individual, class, school, or district. For ready-made storytelling lesson plans, visit or email
  • Youth will be telling to audiences of 20 to 300 people at the Festival. To prepare, youth should have the opportunity to present their stories to as many audiences as possible (e.g. classes, organizations, or clubs).

 Storytelling Requirements:

  • Story Crossroads is about the art of oral storytelling. As such, do not read the story.
  • Stories have a 3-6-minute time limit.
  • Story performances (such as skits) do not qualify.
  • Stories shared in other languages (e.g. Spanish, American Sign Language) are highly favored.
  • Music, dance, or other art forms may be incorporated, provided storytelling is the primary focus. Any props should be minimal.
  • Stories may be original or retold. For retold stories, credit must be given to the author or original teller. Tellers are required to receive permission to tell a published story.
  • Avoid stories from picture books. Stories without pictures encourage creativity rather than recitation.

 Application and Acceptance Details:Youth teller at 2017 Story Crossroads

  • The application deadline is April 1, 2020.
  • Guardian(s) will complete the online application at Details for submitting the video audition are included. Youth selected through district-level festivals are not required to submit a video.
  • Video auditions are reviewed by the Story Crossroads Board.
  • Applicants will be informed of acceptance via email by May 1, 2020.
  • Invited youth are required to attend a 1-hour microphone etiquette workshop on May 9, 2020 at 9:30am.


storycrossroads@gmail.com • 801-870-5799