Episode 25: The Art of Storytelling with Michael Katz

Hosted By: Mag Dimond

November 23, 2021

There’s nothing more captivating than a story that grabs your attention, speaks to your heart, and elicits deep belly laughs. And a good story is nothing without a talented storyteller!

Today, my honored guest is Michael Katz, a professional storyteller who performs and works with children in the Santa Barbara area and teaches mindfulness in elementary schools. Michael has worked as a storyteller since 1985 and was the host of a radio show dubbed The Katz Pajamas. He also performs at elementary schools, festivals, and illustrious events like the opening of the Disney Concert Hall. Michael’s recording of folktales from around the world, “Far Away and Close to Home,” received the Parents’ Choice Silver Honor Award. 


What You Hear/Learn/Discover

[2:23]  Michael shares how he first developed his love of storytelling.

[08:24]  Michael explains how his first big break came hosting a local radio show. 

[10:19] Find out why mindfulness is essential to the art of storytelling, and learn how Michael teaches mindfulness to kindergarteners and first graders. 

[16:48] Michael discusses all he’s learned working with children.  

[27:52] Michael explains his aversion to screen time and why he chooses not to promote his business on social media. 

[33:35] Michael talks about his father’s death and how he reconciled his feelings about his father’s absence from his life.

[42:00] Michael and Mag discuss what we can learn from our loved ones at the end of their life. 



“When I was about 30, I just quit the job I had. I said, “I’m going for it.” I’m going for it for a year. Let’s see if I can make it as a professional storyteller. And here I am 30 years later, still doing it.”

“I grew up in LA, so I never wanted to get into that rat race. I just don’t have a strong enough ego for it. The competition’s crazy … I’m much happier being a big fish in a small pond than being a small fish in a big pond.”

“My love of story was there at an early age…. My grandmother, she grew up on an Ohio farm, but I grew up in Los Angeles. So, I didn’t know anything about a farm. She would tell me stories from the farm. And some of them, my mouth would just be wide open. Because it might be something as gruesome as how you would kill a chicken.”


Connect with Michael Katz 



You can download the transcript here.




From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much for being here. If you haven’t already, come join the community!

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