Powerful storytelling events included in 2019 Festival

The 2019 Spirit & Place Festival will celebrate, explore, challenge and reflect on the meaning behind revolution and evolution, creating the unique theme of R/Evolution on Nov. 1-10. Exploring the idea of change in the world, whether it’s sudden and abrupt, or gradual and unfolding, this year’s festival offers the public a chance to share in experiences that build community.

Now in its 24th year, the Spirit & Place Festival continues to be Indianapolis’ largest collaborative festival that uses the arts, religion and humanities as tools for shaping individual and community life through 10 days of events designed with community partners, individuals and congregations.

There will be 32 unique events this year that will take place across Indianapolis and feature a variety of presenters, speakers and performers. This year’s festival includes many events centered around panel-style discussions over powerful topics. These discussions are intended to spark conversation and explore current and historical events that are relevant to citizens of Central Indiana.

Visit the website at www.spiritandplace.org for the full festival lineup, including these interactive events below:


 Saturday, November 2, 9 a.m.—2 p.m.

 Spirited Chase

Presented by WFYI Public Media and its Mystery Partners

WFYI Public Media—1630 N. Meridian St.

Cost: $9

 Spirited Chase is a unique event offering participants the opportunity to renew their spirit through discovering new people and places in our community. Each mystery partner organization has been selected based on their connection to the transformation of our city and the individuals who live in it. At each mystery destination, participants will engage in a brief interactive program as they learn about the many ways these people, places, and programs are affecting change and transforming, evolving, and revolutionizing our community.  


Saturday, November 2, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

 Super Universal Shape Shifters

Presented by Ivy Tech Community College – Indianapolis, Ivy Tech Student Life & Development Indianapolis, and Dances of Universal Peace Indianapolis

Ivy Tech Community College IFC Illinois Fall Creek Center—2535 N. Capitol Ave.

 Join us for a come-and-go, family-friendly community event that will stoke positive energy in the universe! Bring your love of music and dance to create sacred symbols of the universe. 


Sunday, November 3, 12 p.m. — Sunday, November 10, 6 p.m.

 ArtTroop: Transformance

Presented by the Indianapolis Art Center and local artist-veterans

Indianapolis Art Center—820 E. 67th St.

View works of art that express the evolution, change, and growth of local artist/veterans.


 Sunday, November 3, 1—4 p.m.

 Restorations & Requiems: Finding Strength through Music, Art & Faith
Presented by Central Christian Church and Allisonville Christian Church

Central Christian Church Sanctuary & Fellowship Hall—701 N. Delaware St.

Explore how art and music can help heal the soul through a performance of John Rutter’s Requiem, a visual art show, and a discussion panel. 

 Monday, November 4, 6:30—8:00 p.m.

 Remember 1968: Society, Higher Education, and Activism

Presented by IUPUI School of Education, IUPUI Africana Studies Program and Olaniyan Scholars Program, IUPUI Museum Studies Program, and Center for Black Literature & Culture

Central Library Center for Black Literature and Culture—40 E. St. Clair St.

 Life Magazine referenced 1968 as “the year that changed the world.” Hear from Dr. Jakobi Williams at this opening night reception for the exhibit “Remember 1968” to learn how college students shaped this revolutionary year and how campuses across the nation continue to grapple with its legacy. 

 Monday, November 4, 7:30 – 9:00 p.m.

 Antisemitism: The Evolution of the Longest Hatred

Presented by Congregation Beth-El Zedeck and the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library

Congregation Beth-El Zedeck—600 W. 70th St.

 Historian Deborah Lipstadt, an internationally-renowned expert on the Holocaust, will address the evolution of antisemitism as a paradigm for other forms of bigotry and hate.


 Tuesday, November 5, 6—8 p.m.

A Faith Leader & a Scientist Walk into a Bar: Using Improv to Talk about Science and Faith

Presented by IUPUI/IU School of Medicine Communicating Science Program; The daVinci Pursuit; Center for Interfaith Cooperation; March for Science Indiana; and IU Consortium for the Study of Religion, Ethics, and Society.

Books & Brews South Indy—3808 S. Shelby St.

Let’s talk science and religion over coffee or a beer! Using theatrical improvisation techniques, you’ll be given the chance to take on the persona of a scientist, faith leader, or “everyday person” and then practice empathy-rooted communication strategies.


Wednesday, November 6, 5:30—8:00 p.m.


Presented by the Indianapolis Film Project, Spades Park Branch Library, Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library, Big Car Collaborative, and Bluebeard Restaurant

Spades Park Library—1801 Nowland Ave.

 An evening of conversation and film. Join local authors and artists to discuss how evolving threats and fears of the “other” affect art, culture, and community and watch the 1956 film “Storm Center” starring Bette Davis. Food by Bluebeard!


Wednesday, November 6, 6:30—8:30 p.m.

 The Power of the Page

Presented by Peace and Justice Studies at Marian University, Art & Design at Marian University, Marian University Writing Center

Marian University Allison Mansion—3200 Cold Spring Rd.

 View and learn about how the St. John’s Bible – the first fully illuminated and hand-written Bible created since the Middle Ages—uses its power to shift focus towards women, social justice, and contemporary issues.

Wednesday, November 6, 7—9p.m.

 Backs Against the Wall: A Film Screening & Discussion on the Howard Thurman Story

Presented by the Center for Interfaith Cooperation and Butler University Center for Faith and Vocation. Part of the New View Film Series.

Edison-Duckwall Recital Hall—4600 Sunset Blvd.

 Join in on a documentary film screening of “Backs Against the Wall: The Howard Thurman Story” followed by a riveting discussion and multi-art performance inspired by this influential theologian, poet, mystic, and philosopher of nonviolence.


Thursday, November 7, 6—8pm

 Cey More with Art: Art in Cultural R/Evolution

Presented by The Indianapolis Public Library and The Kheprw Institute’s art and cultural assembly, The Build


Central Library Auditorium—40 E. St. Clair St.

 Hear from hip-hop legend Cey Adams, creative director of Def Jam Recordings, and local artists on the revolutionary power of art. Music, art work, and other creative expressions will be showcased throughout the evening.

 Thursday, November 7, 7:00—8:30 p.m.

 The Smart Justice Revolution: From Retribution to Rehabilitation and Reintegration

Presented by the ACLU of Indiana, Goodwill – New Beginnings, Newfields, and Public Advocates in Community Reentry (PACE) Indy

Newfields The Toby Theater—4000 N. Michigan Rd.

 Confront the growing need for a revolution in the criminal justice system –a system that has evolved to focus on punishment rather than rehabilitation. Art exhibition and panel discussion featuring criminal justice policy experts, prison ministry workers, and individuals affected by the prison system.  

Thursday, November 7, 7:00—8:30 p.m.

 The Art of Boycott: Speech, Resistance, and Revolution

Presented by American Friends Service Committee, Muslim Youth Collective, VOCAB, Garfield Park Arts Center, and Jewish Voice for Peace – Indiana

Garfield Park Arts Center—2432 Conservatory Dr.

 An exhibition and panel discussion exploring the art, theory, and practice of boycott: how small changes in behavior can drive systemic change and achieve justice.


Saturday, November 9, 1:00—4:00 p.m.

 Herstory: A Prenatal-Postpartum Pop-Up Museum

Presented by IU Fairbanks School of Public Health, Grassroots Maternal and Child Health Leaders, Carriage House East Apartments – A Glick Property, and IUPUI Department of English

Carriage House Apartments East Community Center—10174 Tinton Ct.

 Celebrate and create with grassroots leaders in maternal and child health as they create pop-up museum aimed to educate on community efforts to improve birth outcomes. This event honors the vital relationship between healthy communities and healthy pregnancies


 Saturday, November 9, 6:30—8:00 p.m.

 Solutions & S’mores

Presented by Bellfound Farm and Project Lia

Bellfound Farm Marketplace—2856 S. Meridian St.

 Film screening highlighting the stories of women who have experienced incarceration, followed by small group discussions hosted over s’mores!


Sunday, November 10, 2—4 p.m.

The World We Live(d) In

Presented by JCC Indianapolis, Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council, Dance Kaleidoscope, Indiana Writers Center, and Indianapolis Art Center

JCC Indianapolis—6701 Hoover Rd.

A juxtaposition of social the justice climate of yesterday and today interpreted through poetry and dance.

Powerful storytelling, films and interactive events part of 2018 Festival

The 2018 Spirit & Place Festival will be held from Nov. 2-11. The festival this year will explore the theme of “intersections.” Intersecting lines can be found anywhere from the cross and cloverleaf, to crossroads and connections. They represent collective creativity and deeper understanding, as well as points of division or conflict.

There will be 32 unique events this year that will take place across 27 venues and feature a variety of presenters, speakers and performers. The festival this year has events with powerful storytelling aspects. These events are interactive and allow attendees to share their story with the community.

Visit the website at www.spiritandplace.org for the full festival lineup, including these discussions below:


Sunday, November 4, 1:30—3 p.m.
Two Truths & a Lie: The Intersection of Fact and Fiction
Presented by Indiana Historical Society; American Indian Center of Indiana, Inc.; and Kennedy King Memorial Center
Indiana History Center—450 W. Ohio St.

It is tempting to think history is nothing but names, dates, and deceased subjects. Not true! In reality, history is a dynamic subject constantly evolving as historians find new sources. But how do we discern what is true when sources sometimes deliberately lie to us? When do we slip from fact to fiction? Through the guise of a lighthearted game, this event will challenge participants to examine the intersection of fact and fiction through rounds of storytelling and source interpretation that the audience gets to vote on.


Sunday, November 4, 4—5:30 p.m.
A Dance of Wisdom Tales and Tunes
Presented by Storytelling Arts of Indiana, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra and St. Luke’s United Methodist Church Spiritual Center
St. Luke’s United Methodist Church—100 W. 86th St.
Cost: $10

A blend of metaphors and “wisdom tales,” like the tale of Naked Truth and Parable, will be discussed while incorporating music. These tales will encourage attendees to reflect on their own personal histories and faith as a way to clarify their thoughts and beliefs.


Monday, November 5, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Hummus & Happiness
Indiana Interchurch Center—1100 W. 42nd St.
Presented by CANDLES Holocaust Museum and Education Center, Muslim Alliance of Indiana, Jewish Community Relations Council and the Center for Interfaith Cooperation

Hummus & Happiness is an event that encourages our audience to consider how film and food can create spaces for the exploration of complex issues and diverse viewpoints. Guests are invited to a hummus-tasting competition, where you can sample (and then vote on) hummus recipes from around the world, prepared by local hummus-makers, who will share their narrative and the story of their recipe. The winner will be announced after the film screening of “Life and Hummus,” followed by a short panel discussion and audience Q&A.


Wednesday, November 7, 6—8 p.m. (Purple Line)
Saturday, November 10, 9—11 a.m. (Blue Line)
Sunday, November 11, 1—3 p.m. (Red Line)
Presented by IndyGo, Marian University Writing Center, and IndyReads
Stories of Indianapolis Transit
Various Meet-Up Locations 

This interactive and on-the-move storytelling event features transit riders on the busses they use. Participants will meet at one of three different locations depending on the day. Each workshop focuses on a different rapid transit corridor that will be in operation by 2022. Attendees will then hop on a bus to hear from transit users and others before settling in for a storytelling workshop at the Julia M. Carson Transit Center. At the Transit Center, participants will craft their own community-focused tales. Bus fare is included with registration.


Thursday, November 8, 6:30—8:30 p.m.
Jewish and . . .
Presented by Jewish Community Relations Council, Storytelling Arts of Indiana, IndyFringe and Indianapolis Public Library
Central Library—Clowes Auditorium—40 E. St. Clair St.

Jewish and . . . features several short talks by members of the Jewish community whose identities intersect with other groups. The sharing of personal narratives is a powerful way of presenting the vast, and often unrecognized, diversity within the Jewish community. Hear about the experiences of these community neighbors, ask questions and help build bridges of understanding.  


Saturday, November 10, 3 – 6 p.m.
Convergence: Connecting our Shared Experience through Performance and Prose
Presented by Stacia Murphy, Kheprw Institute, INAZ Dezign, Oldsoul Entertainment, Bringing Down the Band, IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute, and The Church Within
The Church Within—1125 Spruce St.

The Indianapolis artistic community is a diverse group of people from all walks of life and backgrounds. Featuring many local artists, attendees will reflect on the convergence of artistry, culture and tradition through poetic prose, rhythmic dance and visual storytelling. Spoken word, visual art, dance and music will intersect during this event to showcase stories of historically silenced communities and the power of unity. It will also include a hands-on learning portion and time to interact with the performers.

Festival Seeks Bloggers

Are you good at storytelling? Here’s a fantastic opportunity for you to share your personal “play” story. The Spirit & Place Festival is looking for thoughtful guest bloggers who have a treasured story to share. Perhaps it’s a story about a childhood hideout, the impact of team sports, a memorable visit to GenCon, your uncle’s bathroom humor, your favorite game, your favorite playspace in Indy….the sky’s the limit.

With over 7,500 views in 2012 alone and over 800 views per month, our blog is a great platform for community conversations. So far this year, leading thinkers in the city, our Festival partners, and our staff have contributed amazing personal “play” stories enriching the dialogue around PLAY.

But now we want to hear from you. We are offering you a unique opportunity to flaunt your writing chops on our established platform, instantly boost your online visibility, and expand your social network just by sharing your “play” story with us.

Not sure how to write a blog post? Check out our Guest Blogging Guidelines to learn what it takes to write a fantastic post.

Please send your 400 word story and an image for consideration to Deeksha Kapoor (kapoord@iupui.edu) by Monday, October 22.