Cat studied Drama at Hull University and worked professionally as an actor and a singer before discovering storytelling in 1998. Her career has since taken her around the world, from Singapore to Saudi and endless stages inbetween, but she will still happily perform at a village fete for tuppence and a cream tea. She has performed at all the major storytelling and literature festivals in England and Wales, and has especially close connections with Hay Festival.
Cat is a fiery performer, described by the poet Francesca Kay as ‘always entertaining, often surprising and challenging, but more than that - she is inspirational.’ She is bold, magical, passionate and strong, and performs with extraordinary focus and intensity.
Cat usually performs solo, but her collaborations include the beautiful and beguiling Queen of the Planets with Daniel Morden, and The Tale of Tom Fortune and the Fearsome Bellowhead with the mighty eleven-piece folk band Bellowhead.
She is passionate about village hall touring, and has showcased performance storytelling through the National Rural Touring Forum since 2000.
Many people are surprised to learn that Cat works with children, but she works from nurseries to high schools and is an early years specialist. She is also a best selling Puffin author, with books translated into ten languages.
Cat runs Birmingham’s true life storytelling club Tell Me On A Sunday, and has formed a company of true life tellers – Flashlight – to explore and promote the art of personal storytelling.
Some quotes from nominators
- I have seen Cat telling such a variety of tales in such varied venues they have always made me laugh, cry or left me reflective about the world we live in, or indeed the world we would like to live in . She tells abroad also and is a great ambassador for the art and I would love to see her win this award