storytellers-collage

PHOTOS, VIDEO: Storytellers Return for the 2021 EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays

One of the traditions of the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays is the Storytellers found around World Showcase. Each Storyteller highlights winter holiday traditions and lore from their corresponding country. After their absence at last year’s “Taste of” version of the festival, the festive entertainers have returned.

Norway featuring A Mischievous Magical Barn Santa

magical-barn-santa-1-6539402

In the Norway Pavilion, guests can find the “Mischievous Magical Barn Santa” and Sigrid onstage outside the Royal Sommerhaus.

magical-barn-santa-2-6671023

Sigrid sings a traditional Norway Christmas carol while Santa accompanies her on the recorder.

magical-barn-santa-3-4207518

Sigrid explains the folklore behind the nisse or “barn Santa,” although she doesn’t believe they exist.

magical-barn-santa-4-9030888

As she attempts to explain other traditions, the barn Santa causes mischief and interacts with the audience.

magical-barn-santa-5-2394774

Watch the full performance of Sigrid and the barn Santa below.

China featuring Chinese Lion Dance

chinese-lion-dance-7-9808448

A narrator at the China Pavilion introduces the Chinese Lion, which is operated by two dancers.

chinese-lion-dance-2-7139091

The narrator explains that the lion is said to drive away evil and bring good fortune as the dance begins.

chinese-lion-dance-3-8356184

Throughout, the narrator explains other elements of the dance, such as when the lion is eating or when it takes a “cat nap.”

chinese-lion-dance-6-1176426
chinese-lion-dance-1-1114684
chinese-lion-dance-5-9001162
chinese-lion-dance-4-8091451

Watch the full dance below.

Italy featuring La Befana

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-italy-storyteller-5-4346724

La Befana appears on the stage in the center of the Italy Pavilion.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-italy-storyteller-6-6462522

She explains that she’s a good witch and her name means gift-giver. She brings gifts to Italian children, much like Santa Claus does in other countries.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-italy-storyteller-2-2990812

La Befana visits children on January 5, Epiphany Eve, instead of December 24.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-italy-storyteller-3-9915788
2021-festival-of-the-holidays-italy-storyteller-4-3835012

Watch La Befana tell her story below.

Japan featuring Daruma Storyteller

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-japan-storyteller-3-3679018

In the Japan Pavilion, the storyteller talks about Japanese new year traditions.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-japan-storyteller-5-7433542
2021-festival-of-the-holidays-japan-storyteller-6-9086222

She mainly focuses on the Daruma, a good luck doll.

For more information on booking your next trip with our official travel agent sponsor, the Vacationeer, visit wdwnt.travel.

vacationeer TopBarAD2020 v2
2021-festival-of-the-holidays-japan-storyteller-7-2298947
2021-festival-of-the-holidays-japan-storyteller-9-7162370

Using her bell and folding fan, she tells the story of the Daruma and new year in Japan.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-japan-storyteller-1-2994221

Watch the Japan storyteller below.

Hanukkah Storyteller

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-hanukkah-storyteller-2-2053504

The Hanukkah storyteller is in the new festival area next to the Morocco Pavilion.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-hanukkah-storyteller-6-5498417

Here, the storyteller plays music and tells the history of Hanukkah.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-hanukkah-storyteller-3-3174056
2021-festival-of-the-holidays-hanukkah-storyteller-1-1376241

He shows off a dreidel and leads the audience in singing “Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel.”

hannukah-storyteller-1-5032773

Depending on which Hanukkah storyteller you catch, you might see him play guitar or violin.

hannukah-storyteller-2-6503119
hannukah-storyteller-9406771

Watch a full performance by the Hanukkah storyteller below.

France featuring Pere Noel

pere-noel-1-8869537

In the France Pavilion, American guests will probably be more familiar with this version of Santa Claus than the barn Santa from earlier.

pere-noel-2-6914234

In France, he is known as Pere Noel a.k.a. Father Christmas.

pere-noel-3-8115926
pere-noel-5-9314862

Pere Noel is similar to America’s Santa, but he explains some of the French Christmas traditions that we may not be as familiar with.

pere-noel-7-4287125

Watch Pere Noel in the France Pavilion below.

United Kingdom featuring Father Christmas

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-uk-storyteller-2-5176316

Finally, Father Christmas appears in the U.K. Pavilion — in a green robe instead of red.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-uk-storyteller-1-3611809
2021-festival-of-the-holidays-uk-storyteller-6-6067420

Like Pere Noel, Father Christmas talks about how Christmas is celebrated in the U.K. while talking with children in the audience.

2021-festival-of-the-holidays-uk-storyteller-7-8494981
2021-festival-of-the-holidays-uk-storyteller-8-7751619

Watch Father Christmas tell his story in the video below.

As always, keep following WDWNT for all of your Disney Parks news, and for the absolute latest, follow WDW News Today on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram.