We at ISC are very sorry to say goodbye to one of storytelling’s treasured elders, Roslyn Bresnick-Perry, who died earlier this month, just one day before her 93rd birthday.
Roslyn’s tales of adversity and new beginnings as an American immigrant rightly earned her a reputation as a masterful performer. Born in the former Soviet Union, she came to America with her mother in 1929—the first year of the Great Depression. The obstacles she faced were only beginning; for a long time her severe dyslexia was a barrier to her education, and in the 1940s, her former home and her extended family were destroyed in the Holocaust.
We were lucky enough to have Roslyn share her remarkable stories with us here in Jonesborough at the National Storytelling Festival and as a teller in residence. She came to storytelling as a second calling after a long and successful career as a fashion designer. A lifelong learner, she accomplished more after retirement than most of us can hope to get around to in a lifetime. She generously shared all the happiness, sorrow, laughs, and life lessons that she collected across her long and fruitful life.
Please join us in sending Roslyn’s sons, Martin and Robert, and her many friends our kind thoughts and well wishes as we mourn her passing and celebrate her incredible gifts.