Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Wordstock 2013's Grimm Readers

NBC Grimm stars Silas Weir Mitchell & Bitsie Tulloch read fairy tales at Wordstock 2013
A little report on the fairy tales chosen by NBC's Grimm stars for their dramatic readings during Wordstock this past weekend in Portland, OR:

Bitsie Tulloch (who plays the main character's love interest and is recently new-to-the-Grimm-factor alive and well in her world) chose the Twelve Dancing Princesses, while Silas Weir Mitchell (the reformed big bad wolf, part of the Grimm "Scooby gang" and fan favorite) chose The Boy Who Went Forth To Learn Fear.

I wish more had been reported (read: I wish someone had put it up on YouTube already They did! They did! See below for the video!!) but Oregon Live was generous with other details so I can't really complain. Here are some extracts from the article that will interest fairy tale folk:
The story of the youth who went forth to know what fear was by Adreas Krapf
Mitchell introduced his Grimm tale as "The Story of a Boy Who Went Forth to Learn Fear," and he read with conversational ease the saga of a young man who goes out into the world determined to feel fear. "If only I could shudder," the boy repeats. "If only I could shudder."  
Despite encountering assorted frights -- including some ghoulish bowling, and two deadly black cats, whose cry of, "Au, meow! How cold we are!" Mitchell delivered with high-pitched, feline relish -- the young man still can't shudder. 
He can't, that is, until he marries the daughter of the king, whose chambermaid comes to the rescue. She goes out to the brook, and collects a bucket of cold water filled with wriggling minnows. While the young man sleeps, his wife pulls back the covers and pours the water and minnows on him. The young man wakes, and at last declares, "Yes, now I know how to shudder." 
Finally published 60 years after it was created, Sheila Robinson's The Twelve Dancing Princesses
For her turn, Tulloch read "The Twelve Dancing Princesses," the famous Grimm tale about a veteran soldier who solves the mystery of how the 12 princesses manage to sneak out of the castle every night and dance until their shoes are worn through. 

Tulloch -- whose "Grimm" character, Juliette Silverton, has endured her boyfriend's strange behavior and an amnesia-inducing spell -- said "The Twelve Dancing Princesses" was one of her favorites. Smiling, she said that, in comparison to Mitchell's choice, hers was "a little bit girlier." She read in the smooth, reassuring voice of a parent sharing a much-loved story with her child. 
After the stories, Mitchell and Tulloch were asked why they selected the stories they did.
...Mitchell thanked the audience for sticking with his story, despite its length, and referenced the work of C.S. Jung -- a pioneer in the study of human psychology -- in alluding to the story's theme of something compensatory going on in the boy's psyche. When you feel you lack something, you feel like you've got to go get it, Mitchell said, even though "What he wants is something not great" -- that is, he wants to learn how to be afraid. 
The Boy Who Went Forth To Learn What Fear Was by Lin Ran
As to the ending, in which the young man finally learns to shudder at the hands of his wife, Mitchell said it also speaks to the idea that "We can't be whole unless we have someone...that we can relate to." It's the "other," he said, that makes the boy whole. 
Mitchell then added that was "one of a thousand possible interpretations of the story." 
Tulloch had a personal connection to her story. She wanted to read it from the book she had with her, she said, "Because my sister gave this to me when 'Grimm' was picked up for series two years ago." 
Coming from a military family, she added, she responded to the character of the wounded war veteran being the one to solve the mystery of the princesses' midnight dancing. She also liked that when given the choice of which princess to marry, the soldier acknowledges he's not young anymore, and so decides to marry the eldest princess. 
Twelve Dancing Princesses by Errol Le Cain
You can read the whole article HERE
And now you can see a video too! (See? It pays for me to double check what's going up early the next morning... :)
How fun would that have been to see in person? I'm secretly hoping someone recorded these performances (properly) and that they'll be included as a DVD extra at some point, because this is a keeper.


  1. Thanks for this. I love Grimm. Can't wait for the new season to start!

  2. Nice article. It was my video that was posted. Please follow me on Twitter as PDXgrimmlandia, and as Grimmlandia on Tumblr and Grimmlandia