Anne Shimojima 

3 stars

Storytelling Arts of Indiana

Indiana Historical Society, April 10, 2010

Self-described "folktale lady" Anne Shimojima takes a special pleasure in collecting and telling folktales, largely from Asia. Tales from East and West includes stories from Japan and India—some comic, some instructive, some simply moving. Whatever the content or mood, her years of experience show: she delivered her stories with a steady confidence and a great sense of timing. Ms. Shimojima recounted several brief legends about Judge Ōoka, an actual 18th century Japanese magistrate. His imaginative solutions to difficult cases, such as "The Case of the Stolen Smell," are entertaining, and worth looking up if you haven't heard them.There was no unifying theme for the evening. But, as if to underscore the timelessness of the tales, Ms. Shimojima ended with two stories that helped her through a divorce and to the discovery of new love. In the words of the woman sitting behind me, "That was delightful."

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