Born an army brat in west Texas town of El Paso, and raised in upper Westchester, NY, Jonathan Kruk grew up on tall tales and day-dreams. He toured the United States in a Volkswagen Beetle, served as a counselor for a teen travel camp, worked as a union laborer, and watered Henry Kissinger's office plants.
Mr. Kruk earned a B.A. in English and art from Holy Cross College and an M.A. education from New York University. He studied educational theatre in London, and performed with Gabrielle Roth and the Mirrors.
Telling tales to his kid brother, lead to an epiphany; children love listening to tales told live, launching a full time career storytelling.
He honed his craft on candles and cake by entertaining at over 1000 children’s birthday parties. When Freeport Schools, on Long Island, made him storyteller in residence, he left Dr. Kissinger in 1989 to perform full time.
Every year he enchants at hundreds of schools, libraries, historic sites and festivals with finger fables, story theater, historic lore, myths, medieval tales and more. Jonathan's best known for his solo shows of "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and "A Christmas Carol." He's been featured on The Today Show, The Travel Channel, CBS Sunday Morning, and the BBC.
He’s performed for the New-York Historical Society, the Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum, Pete Seeger’s Clearwater Fest, the NYS Reading Teacher’s Association, NYS PTA Conference, the Nassau County Museum, and the Greater Hudson Heritage Network.
“If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.”
― Rudyard Kipling
Story is the best vehicle for passing on factual information. Historical figures and events linger in children's minds when communicated by way of a narrative. The ways of other cultures, both ancient and living, acquire honor in story. The facts about how plants and animals develop, how numbers work, or how government policy influences history—any topic, for that matter—can be incorporated into story form and made more memorable if the listener takes the story to heart.
― National Council of Teachers of English