Tales by the Sea plays host to a night of storytelling and song.


    Too rare is the experience of hearing a story. Too seldom do we spend an evening watching a stage filled with only one person and their voice.

    The people behind Tales by the Sea, a quarterly storytelling event at Malibu United Methodist Church, are intent on keeping this art alive.

    The latest installment on Saturday evening brought together two diverse storytellers in a show titled “Giving the Heart Its Voice: Women’s Stories, Fairy, Myth and True, Taken to Heart and Told Anew.”

    Organizer Ann Buxie called on Angela Lloyd, who inaugurated the series in April 1995. Lloyd uses her Autoharp and customized washboard to relay stories and songs from all walks of life. Her charming, selfless voice brings an innocence to her performance of moving songs, like “We’ll Dance Across the Sky” and sillier ditties like “Ten Cents a Dance.” The audience of about 50 people gladly snapped along-and sang along when called upon.

    A veteran of “storytelling for grown-ups,” as she calls it, Milbre Burch alternated with poetry and stories. Many tales were thoughtful, like the Inuit yarn called “The Skeleton Woman” and a story of a disturbed man who travels to Providence “because it means God.”

    Humor commingled easily with a fable about a man with eight mouths, and an offbeat take on a classic, “Rapunzel Relocates to Santa Ana.”

    The evening was appropriately punctuated at each end with an e e cummings excerpt: “For whatever we lose, like a you or a me, it’s always ourselves we find at the sea.”