Podcast episode features nonverbal child with supernatural gift

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By Emily Masuda Special to the Express Stories on Stage Davis will release the second-to-last episode of its all-podcast eighth season on Saturday, June 12, with an excerpt from Beth Alvarado’s book “Jillian in the Borderlands,” read by returning actor Kelley Ogden. Even though nine-year-old Jillian was born without speech, she has a supernatural gift for seeing ghosts and artistic ways of communicating with the living. In this excerpt, Jillian travels with her mother Angie from the desert borderlands between Arizona and Mexico to San Francisco, where Jillian confronts many ghosts, including some from her own family. Beth Alvarado is the author of the books, “Jillian in the Borderlands” (Black Lawrence Press, 2020), “Anxious Attachments” (Autumn House Press, 2019), “Anthropologies: A Family Memoir” (University of Iowa Press, 2011), and “Not a Matter of Love and other stories” (Winner, Many Voices Prize, New Rivers Press, 2006). “Anxious Attachments” was long-listed for the PEN America Diamonstein-Spielvogel Art of the Essay Award. Her essays and stories have been published in “The Sun,” “The Southern Review,” “Guernica: An International Journal of Politics and Art,” and “Ploughshares,” and have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes. Three of her essays have been chosen as notable in “Best American Essays.” Beth won an Oregon Literary Career Fellowship. She is core faculty at OSU-Cascades Low Residency MFA Program. Reading “Jillian in the Borderlands,” and returning for her eighth performance with Stories on Stage, is Kelley Ogden. Ogden is an accomplished performer, director, and producer whose work has been seen throughout the area. Co-founder of acclaimed fringe theater company KOLT Run Creations, she has performed with Capital Stage, Sacramento Shakespeare Festival, Main Street Theatre Works, and Theater Galatea, among others. Ogden earned her BFA in performance from The Theatre School at DePaul University in Chicago. The Stories on Stage Davis podcast airs new episodes every second and fourth Saturday, and its eighth season will run from September 2020 to June 2021. Upcoming and past episodes, as well as ways to support the series, can be found on the Stories on Stage Davis website. Stories on Stage Davis is a sponsored project of  YoloArts, a non-profit arts organization. For more information, and to listen to the podcast, visit storiesonstagedavis.com.

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