Barbara is a versatile performer, willing and able to fill a wide variety of slots at festivals. She is at home in front of adult, family, or kid audiences. Her material ranges from personal stories to Biblical narratives to Texas-style Greek myths and traditional folktales with contemporary perspectives. Thanks to her incurable drawl and comic exuberance, she has been compared to Molly Ivins, Ann Richards, Butterfly McQueen, and Forrest Gump’s mother.
Offering a process called “six degrees of separation from scripture,” Barbara shows participants how to look behind the scenes of Biblical texts and find meaning for a contemporary world. In doing so, modern midrashim (stories about stories in the Bible) are created.
“So You Want to Tell Bible Stories?”
“Tell It Together: Creating Your Own Story Theatre”
Story Theatre, a spin-off of Readers Theatre, is an interactive and energizing opportunity for groups – large or small, youthful or mature – to perform a story together. This workshop will provide tips on scripting, presentation techniques, and curriculum integration. Both eager and reticent storytellers alike will be empowered by this ensemble style of performance.
“Shaking the Family Tree”
We learn who we are by looking at those who came before us. This workshop looks at how to discover, interpret, shape, and tell personal stories with one’s own unique voice.
“Digital Storytelling”
This technology-based workshop explores the good, the mediocre, and the ugly in the practice of using computer-based tools to tell stories. The emphasis will be on Web 2.0 tools and software that offer opportunities for all ages to create, share, and collaborate on stories.

Barbara McBride-Smith

Myths surround us – in literature, in pop culture, in our language, and in the news. And yet, the study of ancient myths is rarely on the agenda in modern education. This workshop, by an educator with 44 years of teaching experience, will give you a few tried-and-true methods for infusing Greek myths into the basic curriculum – sparks of ideas for lighting a Promethean fire in your students.
“Making Mythology Modern for Millennials”