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Noa Baum

Born and raised in Israel, Noa Baum is an award-winning storyteller who uses her art to build bridges of peace and understanding. Her stories, drawn from diverse cultures but primarily from her own Jewish heritage and personal experience, highlight our similarities, celebrate our differences, and encourage curiosity, awareness, and acceptance. Noa holds a BFA in Theater from Tel Aviv University and was an actress with the Khan Repertory Theater of Jerusalem. She also studied with acclaimed acting teacher Uta Hagen in NY, and holds a Master of Arts in Educational Theater from New York University (NYU). Noa received a Graduate Fellowship to work in inner city schools from C.A.T., the Theater in Education Company of NYU. She has performed in Turkey, Sweden, Israel, the UK, and the United States, for audiences as diverse as the World Bank, prestigious universities, inner city schools, and detention centers. Noa was featured at the National Storytelling Festival and is a winner of a Parents Choice Recommended award, and a Storytelling World Award for her audio recordings.
I am a spoken word performing artist and now with this my first book, proud to be an author. The performing bug bit at a very early age, when my father improvised perfectly tailored music on the piano to match the stories I made up, and danced and acted out on the living room carpet with my younger siblings. I first learned English when I spent fifth and sixth grades in Palo Alto, CA, while my father was a visiting professor at Stanford University. Like all Israelis, I too served my mandatory two years in the Israeli Defense Forces, first in the secret service and then as an actress with the Israeli Army Theater troupe (read all about it in the book!). I trained in theater at Tel Aviv University and was an actress with the Khan Repertory Theater of Jerusalem. One season, instead of being cast in the play, I was "cast out" to do the Cinderella job: Story Hour for children and their families. What started as a biggest humiliation of my life became a new path to become a storyteller and a source of great joy and healing. My art form can be described as Performance Storytelling – an emerging performance art that borrows from principles of traditional storytelling as well as using tools from theater through the mixing of narration and characterization to evoke a story in the audiences’ imagination. Storytelling is the intersection of my work as a performance artist, educator, and diversity specialist. For me, story is both performance art and tool for change. I love connecting with people through stories. I enjoy telling stories from cultures around the world as well as my Jewish heritage and use storytelling to entertain, build bridges of understanding, and offer pathways to dialogue and peace. In businesses and organizations, I use stories to harness the power of workplace diversity, foster collaboration, and promote innovation. I love to witness the transformative power of a workshop and experience the energy shift in a room full of executives as they discover the power of stories.
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