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Circle Round

Circle Round

Created and produced by parents of young children, WBUR's Circle Round adapts carefully-selected folktales from around the world into sound- and music-rich radio plays for kids ages 4 to 10. Each 10- to 20-minute episode explores important issues like kindness, persistence and generosity. And each episode ends with an activity that inspires a deeper conversation between children and grown-ups.


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Encore: The Woman in the Moon

In honor of Indigenous Peoples' Day, we bring back a favorite tale from the archives: Irene Bedard (Pocahontas, Ralph Breaks the Internet) stars in an Alaska Native story about the out-of-this-world power that comes when we work together.

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Getting Skunked feat. Terrence Terrell

Terrence Terrell (B Positive, Giants) stars in this Native American tale about a gentle giant who brings night and day to the world, and gives a certain striped critter its telltale scent.

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Fools Thrush In feat. Anthony Alabi

Anthony Alabi (Family Reunion, black-ish) headlines an Oneida and Mohawk story about how one of the most beautiful bird songs of all came to be.

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Night and Day feat. MASUMI

Actor/singer-songwriter MASUMI (Yakuza Princess) headlines this magical tale from the Yoruba people about how night came to a world of endless day.

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The Red Velvet Purse feat. Elisa Donovan

Elisa Donovan (Clueless, Sabrina the Teenage Witch) plays a judge who puts honesty on trial in this tale with Chinese, Indian, Ethiopian, and Romanian roots.

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The Friend Ship feat. Carra Patterson

Carra Patterson (Turner & Hooch, Jitney) stars in a tale from Japan about a woman with enough generosity to last a lifetime, and a man with enough greed to sink a ship.

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Encore: The Fire On The Other Side Of The World

We wrap up the summer with another listener favorite: a Cherokee tale in which Yeardley Smith (The Simpsons, Oil and Water) plays a feisty, creative spider who proves that power and strength aren't always about physical size.

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Circle Round Presents: Stories Podcast

We?re mixing it up today and sharing an episode of "Stories Podcast" -- a show featuring everything from classic fairytales to original stories for kids, written by Dan Hinds and performed by Amanda Weldin. In this story, "The Grass is Always Greener," we meet a bunny named Beverly who's in search of the most delicious grass.

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The Laughing Canoe feat. George Salazar

George Salazar (Be More Chill, Superstore) plays a wise-cracking waterborne vessel in this Brazilian story about the extraordinary things teamwork can bring.

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Encore: The Chattering Clams

This week we bring back a listener favorite: Mindy Thomas and Guy Raz (hosts of "Wow in the World") star in a whimsical Native American tale about the dangers of gossip.

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The Laws of Nature feat. Mo Rocca

Mo Rocca (CBS Sunday Morning, Wait, Wait... Don't Tell Me!) headlines this eco-conscious Estonian/Finnish tale about conservation, courtesy, and how actions speak louder than words.

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Encore: Sir Luck and Mister Riches

In this favorite tale from the archives, comedian/kids' author Michael Ian Black (I'm Worried, Cock-a-Doodle-Doo-Bop) and actor/director David Wain (Wet Hot American Summer, Medical Police) believe they know the secret to what makes people truly happy.

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The Patched-Up Coat feat. Peter Sagal

NPR's Peter Sagal (Wait, Wait... Don't Tell Me!) stars in this Russian story about how fantastically priceless a little generosity can be.

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Encore: The King's Face

Broadway stars Derrick Baskin (Ain't Too Proud ? The Life and Times of The Temptations, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee) and Brandon Uranowitz (An American in Paris, Burn This) play a curious king and clever farmer in this tale with roots in Russia, Italy, India, Greece, Africa and Iran.

This episode was originally released on October 22, 2019.

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The Mountain Guardian feat. Alonzo Bodden & Audrey Hsieh

Audrey Hsieh (Here Today, Mixtape) and Alonzo Bodden (Wait, Wait... Don't Tell Me!, Who's Paying Attention) headline this Tibetan tale about two family members who are rewarded appropriately by a stone lion, one for her generosity and one for his greed.

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Circle Round Presents: Julie's Library

While we?re hard at work putting together a brand new season of exciting stories, we?re giving you a special treat? an episode of another podcast we think you?ll enjoy: "Julie?s Library," featuring Julie Andrews and her daughter Emma Walton Hamilton as they share some of their favorite books for kids and families.

In this episode, award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson visits the library to read her book "The Day You Begin," which is about feeling different from everyone around you.

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Encore: The Magpie With Salt On Her Tail

Rachael Harris (Lucifer, Suits) and Taran Killam (Nature Cat, Saturday Night Live) star in this special encore episode about a young man who learns that -- with a little hard work -- dreams can come true.

This episode was originally released on December 19, 2017.

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Encore: The Princess and the Egg

In this enchanting tale from the archives, Amber Stevens West (Happy Together, Run the World) stars as a globe-?trotting princess who works hard to keep her promises.

This episode was originally released on October 23, 2018.

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Encore: The Goat in the Garden

In this favorite episode from the archives, Ray Magliozzi (Car Talk) plays a stubborn goat who inadvertently reminds us that true heroes comes in all shapes and sizes.

This episode was originally released on January 23, 2018.

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Encore: Sweet Corn and Clever Rabbit

In this favorite episode from the archives, Eris Baker (This Is Us) plays a tricky rabbit who presents her fellow animals with an offer they can't refuse.

This episode originally released April 9, 2019.

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She Tells Seashells feat. Joaquina Kalukango

Tony Award nominee Joaquina Kalukango (Slave Play, One Night in Miami) stars in this Zulu tale from South Africa about how stories came to the world.

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The Unfair Share feat. Jon Huertas & Faith Salie

Jon Huertas (This Is Us, Initiation) and Faith Salie (CBS Sunday Morning, Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me) headline this folktale about a generous queen, a cunning farmer, and a devious gatekeeper who takes more than his fair share.

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The Missing Knight feat. Sarah, Duchess of York & Jason Mantzoukas

Duchess Sarah Ferguson of York (Storytime With Fergie) and Jason Mantzoukas (How Did This Get Made, Housebroken) play a crafty queen and scheming advisor who face off in an unforgettable game of chess.

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The Bearded Lake feat. Owen Teale

Owen Teale (Game of Thrones, Dream Horse) stars in this Welsh legend about a desperate farmer who becomes too greedy for his own good.

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Encore: 100 Rooms

In this favorite episode from the archives, seven-time Emmy-Award winner Ed Asner (Up, The Mary Tyler Moore Show) plays a wise father who challenges his daughters to solve a tricky challenge by thinking outside the box.

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Growing Courage ft. Kyla Pratt

Kyla Pratt (Call Me Kat, The Proud Family) headlines this Ethiopian story about the power of facing your fears.

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The Giant?s Causeway feat. Alison Wright

Alison Wright (Snowpiercer, The Americans) stars as a wise and witty Irish giant who proves she's colossal in both size and smarts.

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The Fire Within feat. Maz Jobrani

Comedian and actor Maz Jobrani (Pandemic Warrior, Back To School With Maz Jobrani) plays a wise man with an on-fire imagination in this clever tale from Turkey, Balochistan, India, Ethiopia, Kenya, the West Indies, and the Hispano community of New Mexico.

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The Governor?s Puzzle feat. Tiffany Espensen

Tiffany Espensen (Spider-Man: Homecoming, Kirby Buckets) stars in this Chinese folktale about thinking outside the box and inside the boat.

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Encore: The Queen's Gift

This favorite episode from our archives is in loving memory of an actor you've heard in numerous Circle Round stories, including this one: Delores King Williams.

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Mangoes in the Middle feat. Utkarsh Ambudkar

In this tale from India, Utkarsh Ambudkar (Brittany Runs a Marathon, We Are Freestyle Love Supreme) plays an ingenious royal advisor who cunningly proves the true owner of a fruitful treasure.

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Counting Crocodiles feat. Tiya Sircar

In this playful tale from Indonesia and Malaysia, Tiya Sircar (Star Wars Rebels, The Good Place) plays a cunning mouse deer who teaches a cantankerous crocodile a lesson.

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The Uncommon Offering feat. Ruthie Ann Miles

Tony Award Winner Ruthie Ann Miles (The King and I, All Rise) stars in this Paraguayan story about giving the most rare and precious gift of all.

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The Red Leather Shoes feat. Madhur Jaffrey & Aasif Mandvi

Aasif Mandvi (The Daily Show, Evil) and Madhur Jaffrey (Madhur Jaffrey's Curry Nation, I Feel Bad) co-star in this Indian story about a wise king, a generous shoemaker, and a priceless pair of shoes.

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The Wind Catcher feat. Lea Salonga

Tony Award winner Lea Salonga (Miss Saigon, Les Misérables) headlines this Marshallese tale about how the first sailboat came to be.

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Encore: One Speckled Hen

This week, we bring back a favorite story from the archives: Tony Award winner André De Shields (Hadestown, The Full Monty) stars in a Jewish tale that tests the old adage, "Finders keepers, losers weepers."

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All The King?s Dogs feat. Rory Culkin & Jeremy Sisto

Jeremy Sisto (Law and Order, FBI) and Rory Culkin (Waco, Halston) co-star in this Hungarian story about two farmers, one wise king, and a whole mess of canines.

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The Fishermen?s Leftovers feat. Marc delaCruz

In this magical tale from Japan, Marc delaCruz (If/Then, Hamilton) plays a lowly cook whose kitchen scraps bring him a golden reward.

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The Horse of a Different Color feat. Christina Anthony & Lindsay Mendez

Christina Anthony (Mixed-ish, Key & Peele) and Tony winner Lindsay Mendez (Carousel, All Rise) play a one-of-a-kind horse and rider in this enchanted tale from across the Spanish-speaking world.

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The Head and the Heart feat. Hrishikesh Hirway & Joshua Malina

Joshua Malina (The West Wing, Scandal) and Hrishikesh Hirway (Song Exploder, The West Wing Weekly) co-star in this Jewish tale about two brothers who make two very different ways in the world.

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Three Little Critters feat. Mason Gooding & Allen Maldonado

Mason Gooding (Love, Victor; Scream 5) and Allen Maldonado (Sneakerheads, The Last O.G.) co-star in this East African story about the big power of a little teamwork.

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Encore: The Emperor's Challenge

As we ring in the new year, we bring back a favorite episode about planting the seeds of honesty, starring Nikki SooHoo (Star Wars Resistance, The Resident) and Christine Toy Johnson (Iron Fist, Come From Away).

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Encore: A Bird in the Hand

As we celebrate the winter holidays, we revisit a favorite episode from season two: Broadway legends Rebecca Luker and Danny Burstein play a talking bird and spoiled prince who explore the meaning of true wisdom.

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Ariana?s Music feat. Mireille Enos

Mireille Enos (Hanna, The Killing) headlines this new spin on an ancient Greek legend about an instrument that captivates everyone who hears it, whether they have skin, scales, hair, hides, feathers, or fur.

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The Three Tests feat. Kiera Allen

Kiera Allen (Run) plays a wise woman whose cleverness is tested by her father long after he's gone in this story from Armenia, Greece, Russia, Germany and Hungary.

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The Twin Monkeys feat. Julia Nickson & Lizzy Capri

Julia Nickson (Rambo: First Blood Part II, The Unbidden) and YouTuber Lizzy Capri headline this Tibetan and Burmese tale about finding treasure, playing tricks, and monkeying around.

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Simple Gifts: Circle Round's Season-of-Giving Special

To celebrate the season of giving, we bring you a special mega-episode revisiting four of your favorite Circle Round stories about generosity.

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The Basilisk?s Stare feat. Nabiyah Be & Evan Whitten

In this tale inspired by a Polish legend, Nabiyah Be (Black Panther, Daisy Jones & The Six) and Evan Whitten (The Resident, Mr. Robot) face off against a fantastical creature whose gaze turns people to stone.

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The Fantastic Fiddle feat. Adam Irigoyen

This Hispanic tale from the Southwest U.S. stars Adam Irigoyen (Away, Shake It Up) as a fiddler whose magical instrument brings the world to its feet, and the guilty to their knees.

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Little Frog?s Big Voice feat. Alex Brightman & Dyllón Burnside

Dyllón Burnside (POSE, Prideland) and Tony nominee Alex Brightman (Beetlejuice, School of Rock - The Musical) co-star in this Australian story about small critters, giant egos, and why frogs croak.

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