November 21: Spoken Reality: A talk with NYC Storytelling Producers
Image by uniondocs
Join us for an evening of storytelling with some of New York City’s most influential and innovative producers of live storytelling shows. These are the people at the forefront of one of the fastest growing creative scenes in the country – to quote The Moth: “True stories, told live on stage, without notes.” This evening, curated by Moth GrandSLAM winner Brad Lawrence, will bring them together to perform and to discuss the process of crafting a story, the growth of the form, and its relationship to the broader world of the documentary arts.
Ask Me is a storytelling show that takes place at Arlo and Esme the first Wednesday of every month. It is co-hosted by Cammi Climaco and David Crabb. Each show features three performers, which has included Max Silvestri, Gabe Leidman and Catie Lazarus, and one themed promotional video. On special days, it features Jack Perry on piano accompanying the stories.
Cammi Climaco is a visual artist. She completed her M.F.A. at Cranbrook Academy of Art and received her B.F.A from Kent State University, Kent, Ohio. She has exhibited her multi-media sculpture and videos nationally and internationally in both solo and group exhibitions. Her most recent show was at The Lower East Side Print Shop, in New York City. She has also had exhibitions at Lump, Raleigh, NC, The Rotunda Gallery in Brooklyn, NY and Silo, New York, NY. Working primarily in sculpture and installation, she has recently completed a Special Projects Residency at the Lower East Side Print Shop for printmaking. Cammi teaches at Pratt Institute of Art.
David Crabb (AEA, SAG) is an actor, writer, producer, and musician. He is currently the in-studio story producer of the NYC show RISK!. He has been a member of the critically acclaimed Off-Broadway Axis Company since 2001, starring in and developing plays with the company in Paris and Edinburgh, Scotland. As on-camera host, writer, and content producer for the NRDC’s ItsYourNature.Org, David has traveled to SXSW, Bonnaroo, the Everglades, Miami, and the X Games to interview indie music luminaries The Roots, The Flaming Lips, and Regina Spektor, among many others. His photographs have graced the pages of Interview magazine. David is a recent Moth StorySLAM winner.
The BTK Band is NYC’s hardest-drinking improvised storytelling rock band. Raconteurs regale the audience with true stories from their lives while music and lyrics are improvised to turn their stories into songs. As if Tom Waits and The Moth delivered a baby from the gaping maw of Chaos.
Peter Aguero was born and raised in the wilds of South Jersey. At times a high school history teacher, bar bouncer and ice cream truck driver, he now resides in Queens, NY with his college sweetheart wife. He spent 8 years in the National Touring Company of Chicago City Limits, NYC’s longest running improv show. Peter is a Moth GrandSLAM champion, host of Moth StorySLAMs, and an instructor for the MothShop Community Program. He is the lead singer of The BTK Band, NYC’s only improvised storytelling rockband, performing in residence at Under St Mark’s Theater in the East Village. Peter loves his Mom.
The Moth was started in 1997 and believes that everyone has a story. Following the extraordinary success of the Mainstage series, where stories are pulled from the general public and cultivated with coaches, The Moth sought to accommodate all the people who asked, “When can I tell my story?” The StorySLAM aims to give those eager storytellers a forum, and also to encourage folks who’ve doubted they had a story worth telling. The Moth StorySLAM provides a stage and a microphone, a theme to inspire and shape the evening, a lively and supportive audience, and a host to guide the festivities. SLAM stories are limited to five minutes, and ten stories are heard. The stories are scored by three teams of audience-member judges, and a winner is announced at every SLAM. The winners later face off in a Moth GrandSLAM. Since 2001, the raucous, moving, funny and wild stories that emerge during each show have kept the crowds coming back again and again. Now, each month, there are four Moth StorySLAMs in NYC , three in Los Angeles and one in both Detroit and Chicago. The Moth will add more cities in 2011. Stories from the StorySLAMS are regularly featured on The Moth Radio Hour, which airs in over 200 major markets in America.
Jenifer Hixson is Senior Producer at The Moth, where she developed and oversees The Moth StorySLAM. She rarely misses a StorySLAM meaning she’s heard approximately 2,890 five-minute stories. Story-wise, there are always laughs, usually a tear or two, and on occasion, blood. Great that after all this time, and all those stories, there are still surprises.
Standard Issues is a monthly show which is designed for veteran storytellers to try out new material and new storytellers to get their feet wet in a fun and welcoming atmosphere. Every third Tuesday, at 8 o’clock at Pacific Standard in Park Slope, you can see New York’s acknowledged best together with the up and comers who are making a splash and then drink with them. Then at the end of each show, the name of a mystery guest is pulled from the hat.
Cyndi Freeman is an actress, playwright and burlesque performer. She co-produces The Standard Issues story telling show in Brooklyn with her husband Brad Lawrence. She is a MothSlam winner and has appeared on story telling shows throughout New York, including The Liar Show, Stripped Stories, True Tales of College as well as others. She also performs burlesque as Cherry Pitz and produces Hotsy Totsy Burlesque with co-producer Joe the Shark. She is currently working on a solo show entitled Wonder Woman: A how to guide for little Jewish Girls.
TOLD is a monthly storytelling show hosted by Seth Lind and produced by Heidi Grumelot. The third Monday of every month, New York’s best performers take the stage at Horse Trade’s UNDER St. Mark’s Theater to tell true stories related to a central theme. A special guest provides interludes to glue the evening together into a collective experience.
Seth Lind hosts the monthly storytelling show TOLD, performs improv comedy with the group Thank You Robot, and is production manager for the public radio program This American Life. He’s also worked in various capacities on several documentaries and fiction films. Seth has a pacemaker but no known allergies.
Brad Lawrence, the curator of this evening, is one of New York City’s rising talents in the burgeoning world of live storytelling. A Moth Storyslam winner, and one of the few to achieve that distinction on his first appearance, he is also the only storyteller to win back to back Moth GrandSLAMS. He has also been a guest intro performer for The Moth’s outreach program to schools and institutional communities. He is a regular at such shows as The Liar’s Show, Speakeasy Stories, Seth Lind’s Told, The Risk Podcast, as well as How I Learned at Happy Endings and the show he co-produces with his wife, The Standard Issues, both of which have garnered him mentions in The New York Times. Brad is currently working on his memoir, Monsters In The Wood, and will be performing each chapter as a live show at Under Saint Marks Theater, beginning in November. His blog is billyjoesboy.com.