Bilingual Storyteller, Percussionist and Speech Pathologist Mama Edie Armstrong promotes, through her personal stories, interactive folktales and percussion, cultural awareness and dignity and the ability to see and believe in our own natural beauty. Her comical stories promote the joys of learning each other’s languages and the wisdom, through Ananse the Spider, to embrace the strength and beauty in our diversity versus allowing it to keep us apart. Her original historical stories bring to life often obscured contributions of people or events such as:
- Dr. Daniel Hale Williams, first successful open-heart surgeon and founder of Provident Hospital in Chicago (rhythmical story-poem)
- Garrett Morgan, traffic light genius (with song taught in Sign Language)
- Queen Nzinga of Angola, who repeatedly defeated the Portuguese
- Mama Edie’s story of her march at 15 for fair housing in Chicago with
Dr. Martin Luther King (with original song “Stand UP!”)
- “Grandpa Quilla McCloud of the Brother of Sleeping Car Porters,” the first union created for African Americans (rhythmical story-poem about Mama Edie’s grandfather)
- “An African Native American Story,” somber and humorous reflections of Mama Edie’s Native American heritage
- King Sundiata Keita, the first Emperor of Mali and actual Lion King (performed with the Drum Divas)
Mama Edie creates stories tailored to any theme that highlight the power of our words and the importance of making a positive difference.
Her participation in an international peace conference in Iraq in November of 2017 fueled her work through story as an ambassador of peace, social justice and personal empowerment.