Hi friends! We’re looking forward to our big show on March 4th, and hope that you are, too. I realized this morning that this marks the very last show of Here’s the Story’s first year of life. Wow. It is amazing to think about all the wonderful people we have met, and all the friends that have been made through this event in one year. It has also been an honor to have been part of fostering the vibrant trend of storytelling in Chicago. We set out to offer the great people who populate Chicago’s many creative communities, a space to get to know and be inspired by one another, and looking back it kinda feels like we have done some of that! I am so happy for all of you who know each other now… I am happy for the time we’ve gotten to spend listening to each other… and I am happy that we have all made something that exists for no other purpose than to share and share alike. If you haven’t had a chance to join us yet, and have been meaning to make it out, please do. I think you’ll be happy to find the warm thing that is growing here.
Our show continues to be free if you bring a dish to contribute ]to our community potluck. If it doesn’t work to lug something, we ask for a $5 donation at the door simply to cover the cost of the theater rental. It’s important to us to continue to host HtS in a theater space, to give your stories the dignity of a theatrical frame, and to encourage a high quality of performance. And, we love the people at 773, and like supporting them. Our show was free all during our first year, because we just wanted it to be. The rental costs were covered personally. We are asking for this little contribution from you each show now, so that HtS can be sustainable. We also have a number of great auxillary events planned for the coming year that are kind of participatory, story-making game-playing events that happen throughout the city. We offer them in the same spirit of giving people reasons to come together and play, and to have more things to tell stories about. Any additional donation you give beyond the $5, or for the beautiful hand silk-screened t-shirts we make, will go in those directions.
Okay, now for our features! We have a WONDERFUL line-up for you this month! Beloved Chicago writers, bloggers, theater makers, a psychologist, poet and juggler for your listening pleasure! Read on to know a little more about them.
Judy Fabjance is a graduate of Second City’s Training Center’s Conservatory, Comedy Writing and Acting Programs and IO. She has studied at The Annoyance Theater and Columbia College. For fifteen years, she has been performing with and is a founding member of GayCo. Other stage credits include: Second City Theatricals (Weddings of Mass Destruction), i.O. (Foam Treatment), The Comedy Sportz Family Matinee Series (The Paper Spaceship), Single Box Turn Productions (understudied Hope in Band Geeks and played drums in the oldy tyme band in Little House on the Parody), Sullacco Productions (Shadow of the Master; A Kung-Fu Musical Sequel), Anton Chekhov’s Bastard Child and Can I see some I.D.? (director). Film credits include the Independent film, Crushed and GayCo’s shorts, Get A Gay, Baby Time Share and Old Maid. Judy has been teaching Improvisation at The Second City since 1999. She also teaches and has taught at Emerald City Theatre Company, Chicago Comedy Company, CIF, Keshet, high schools, junior highs, After School Matters, Day Camps, Family Nights and corporate groups. Judy’s biggest accomplishment (aside from her wonderful four year old daughter) has been surviving breast cancer in 2009.
David W. Berner is an award-winning journalist, broadcaster, author, and teacher. His first book, Accidental Lessons was awarded the 2011 Royal Dragonfly Grand Prize for Literature. His broadcast reporting and audio documentaries have been aired on the CBS Radio Network, NPR’s Weekend Edition and a number of public radio stations across America. David has been the recipient of awards from the Associated Press, RTNDA (Radio and Television News Directors Association) and the Broadcast Education Association.
David’s writing, both reporting and personal essays, have appeared in publications and online journals such as PERIGEE, Tiny Lights Journal, Shaking Like a Mountain, Travelgolf.com, Worldgolf.com, Golf Chicago Magazine, The Sun Newspapers, and Write City Magazine. In the summer of 2011, David was awarded the position of Writer-in-Residence at the Jack Kerouac Project in Orlando, Florida.
David is also a performer. He’s a regular on the Chicago storytelling circuit, reading his personal essays at events such as Story Club, Essay Fiesta, and This Much is True. As an associate professor at Columbia College Chicago, he teaches radio narrative, audio documentary, and writing. He has presented writing workshops at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and for numerous literary organizations throughout the Chicago area.
David holds a Masters in Education/Teaching from the Aurora University and a MFA in Creative Writing from Fairleigh Dickinson University.
Don Hall is the Founding Director of Chicago’s fringey WNEP Theater, where he has produced over 125 World Premieres and directed 35 – 50 of them since 1992. He directs shows around town for money (or the satisfaction of directing something unique). He’s also an actor and has performed in shows by Second City, WNEP Theater, The Mammals, Chicago ComedySportz, Chemically Imbalanced Comedy, Livewire Theater, and others. Other theatrically related activities include teaching improvisation to the masochistic and karaoke when lit.
Don also works as the Events Coordinator for WBEZ where he has produced dozens of events from a Global Activism Expo that included over 100 Global Activists and thousands of attendees to a Chef Battle, a Hip-Hop Dance Party, a Cannes Award Winning Film Screening, a City-Wide Bike Tour…soon, he will have the most eclectic producing resume anywhere.
He is also the House Manager/Production Manager/Audience Services Manager for NPR’s Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! and directed the Audible Feast for WBEZ featuring NPR luminaries Scott Simon, Ira Glass and Peter Sagal.
And the host of The Moth at Haymarket Pub and Brewery (third Monday of every month).
In addition, Hall has been a professional trumpet player, a seventh and eighth grade music teacher in the Chicago Public Schools, worked on a horse ranch, tarred roofs, sold cigars, managed a video store (when all there was was VHS), and managed the facilities for a massage school. Call it a truly Liberal Arts Education from the School of IDunnoWhatIWannaDO. Check out his blog here.
Frank R Sjodin is a professional actor, clown, and theatre artist living in Chicago. You might find him performing as a clown or puppeteer on the street around Lincoln Square, as a walk-around character at Navy Pier, or onstage somewhere. His clown troupe, Play Mechanics can be found on YouTube. He also just got signed on building sets at RedTwist Theatre, and occasionally writes pulp fiction.
Abigail Vic is currently working on a mixed-form (poetry/prose) “memoir” manuscript, using poetic forms like pantoums, ghazals, sonnets, etc. as a structure for telling stories about her life; a “biomythography.” You’ll find these on her blog, Other Truths.
She is also engaging in creative non-fiction and personal essay writing, as in, for example, Life and Contraception.
That’s it! Hope very much to see you on the 4th. :)
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Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont
7:30 doors open/8-10+ show
$5 admission, or free with potluck contribution