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My Father: Francis Doherty, Parts 1 and 2 by Maura Doherty

In order to prepare for this show, I asked myself: where do I come from? Why is it that personal stories mean so much to me? Especially stories of family and of the people who have impacted my life? Why is helping others important to me? And I thought back to my father, Francis Doherty. Yes, I thought, it’s time to bring him to the stage.

I asked: what if Dad wasn’t Irish? What if he never learned to read? What if 1930 America didn’t let him emigrate from Ireland? What if he stayed in Ireland to feed the chickens? The stories I will tell are woven from my own memories of my father as well as stories that my cousin Mary shared about him. Priceless stories of what he was like as a young man, twenty-years old.

In Part 1 I tell a story from my father’s point of view as he grew up in rural Ireland. In Part 2 I tell his story from my point of view as his daughter.

The Portland Storytellers’ Guild (PSG) has been a source of support for me over the past decade as I’ve developed my skills as a storyteller. Consider joining us when we kick off our new season in September, 2019: for our Potluck + Storytelling on the second Friday at the Multnomah Arts Center and our monthly performances starting the first Saturday in September at the Clinton Street Theater. Long live storytelling!

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