The Hans Christian Andersen Storytelling Center | New York
Storytelling at the Hans Christian Andersen Statue in Central Park
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The Hans Christian Andersen Storytelling Center


Saturday, December 16, 2023

11:00 am - 12:30 pm

In Praise of Kindness

An Online All Hans Christian Andersen Storytelling Festival for the Holidays

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Featuring Storytellers

Laura Simms - The Ugly Duckling & The Little Match Girl
Simon Brooks - Foolish Hans
Therese Plair - The Flying Trunk
Ed Stivender - There is a Difference
and violinist Shem Guibbory

Free!   All Ages Welcome!

Hans Christian Andersen, known throughout the world for his literary fairytales, was devoted to kindness and care for children, and to the natural world. As a special holiday event, and as an antidote to the swell of violence in the world, we are presenting some of his great stories in celebration of compassion.

The stories are family friendly and engage all ages.
Please join us to listen and then share the tales with others to further kindness and understanding in our world. The stories will be recorded and can be downloaded on YouTube for a month after the program.

Contributions are gladly accepted to support Summer Storytelling in Central Park

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The Fairy Tale - Thumbelina - by Hans Christian Andersen



Here are the storytelling programs we presented in Central Park in 2023. Check our website again next spring for Summer 2024.

JUNE 2023





6/17/2023 at 11 AM

April Armstrong
Laura Simms
Musician – Salieu Suso
The Teapot
The Nightingale
Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen
6/24/2023 at 11 AM

Therese Plair
Ed Stivender
Special Emcee: Melissa Heckler
The Flying Trunk
There is a Difference
Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen

JULY 2023

7/1/2023 at 11 AM

Bill Gordh w/Banjo
Rachael Harrington
Special Emcee: Ellen Shapiro
Little Ida's Flowers
The Queen's Horse
Hans Christian Andersen
7/8/2023 at 11 AM

Jean Hale
Regina Ress
Ron Sopyla
Special Emcee: Regina Ress

The Pixie
The Wicked Prince
The Most Incredible Thing of All

Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen

7/15/2023 at 11 AM

Michele Carlo
Robin Bady w/guitar
Special Emcee: Laura Simms
Juan Bobo and his Pig
The Journey of the Beetle
Puerto Rican
Hans Christian Andersen
7/22/2023 at 11 AM

Megan Wells
Joy Kelly w/guitar
Special Emcee: Laura Simms
The Sandman
Annsi & the Moss Covered Stone
Hans Christian Andersen
North African
7/29/2023 at 11 AM

Simon Brooks, w/drums
Special Emcee: Laura Simms
Foolish Hans
Hans Christian Andersen


8/5/2023 at 11 AM

Milbre Burch
Special Emcee: Heather Forrest
The Enchanted Sister
Pennsylvania Dutch
8/12/2023 at 11 AM

Usha Venkatraman, w/puppets
Heather Forest, w/guitar
Special Emcee: Laura Simms
Sun and Moon
The Emperor's New Clothes
Hans Christian Andersen



The history of Hans Christian Andersen's Statue

More than sixty summers in New York City's Central Park

Fairy Tales From Around The World

On Saturdays all summer long since 1956, New York children have gathered around Hans Christian Andersen's statue at the Conservatory Pond in Central Park to hear his tales told by a fine ensemble of storytellers. Celebrity performers such as Victor Borge, Eva la Gallienne, Fanny Hurst and Celeste Holm have also visited, telling their favorite stories.

Where to find Storytelling Saturdays at 11 by the Statue of Hans Christian AndersenThe idea for the statue originated with Baroness Alma Dahlerup, then president of the Danish-American Women's Association of New York, who had for years arranged for Andersen's stories to be read on the radio. Robert Moses, then New York City Parks Commissioner, secured the 'perfect' site and the City Department of Parks and Recreation and the Central Park Conservancy have given their active support ever since. A significant share of the funding for the statue came from donations made by school children both in Denmark and the United States. Danish-American sculptor George Lober created the larger-than-life bronze statue that was commissioned in 1954, in anticipation of marking the 150th anniversary of the author's birth. Hans Christian Andersens' well-rubbed knees are ample evidence of the fun children continue to have sitting on his lap.

Fairytales and Storytelling is popular with kids and adultsspaceThe statue has become a symbol of the good relations between the United States and Denmark. Following a tradition established by her father and mother, her Majesty, Queen Margrethe II visited the statue in 1976 during her American Bicentennial trip. Other members of the Danish royal family continue to visit. In 1964, the City of Copenhagen contributed two 19th century street lamps that now stand on each side of the statue. In 1985, New York City Parks Commissioner Henry Stern, wishing to reciprocate, sent two New York City street lamps to Copenhagen, which can be seen standing in Dantes Plads. More historic information to be found in "From The Archives."



PayPal link Hans Christian Andersen Storycenter

If you and the children in your life enjoy our free storytelling sessions in Central Park, please consider making a donation to ensure the continued survival of the program. Hans Christian Andersen Storytelling Center is a not for profit corporation with 501(c)(3) status. Donations of $25 or above will receive a formal receipt.

PayPal link Hans Christian Andersen Storycenter

Sponsored by
the Hans Christian Andersen Storytelling Center, Inc.
in cooperation with the City of New York / Parks & Recreation and The Central Park Conservancy.

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