Seems like new creative projects are springing up like wildflowers all over town! This season, Chicago people seem inventive and prolific; unafraid to dream new things up, smart enough to test them out within communities of resourceful friends, and willing to put in the work to make them happen.
I used to feel like there was a long distance between the dreams and ideas that lived inside me and the actual world; an almost unbridgeable gulf. I came to Chicago with a heart’s desire to learn to build such bridges, and I couldn’t have chosen a better place to learn. Friends and colleagues here remind me daily of the powerful combination of want and will and wiles, and I am grateful. (I include a gracious tip of the hat, or curtsy… or something more gender neutral?… to my HtS collaborator Dan, for all he continues to teach and discover with me in this regard.)
The external and internalized oppressions that stop any of us from giving the best we have to give, are real obstacles. But it feels like Chicagoans are figuring out some good ways around and under and over them. If you have dreams for personal or communal creative projects, talk with people about them at our shows. We are rooms full of inventive, persistent, patient makers and doers, and you are welcome.
The revolutionary truth is that none of us is alone. Storytelling reminds us of that. Which is why, I believe, we are seeing such a booming, blooming storytelling scene in Chicago. We are rediscovering the potential of community; reckoning with its responsibilities, and facing the potential it holds to make us all better at giving what we have to give.
Our next show features some awesome givers! People who are making and doing very cool things. Below are the ones we have invited. As always, there will be 5 open slots for people from the audience to fill as well.
MARY FONS is a writer and magazine editor. She also co-hosts a how-two quilting show on PBS. No, for real. Mary is a Neo-Futurist (’06-’12+) and is grateful to be allowed to play in Chicago’s vibrant salon circuit (Paper Machete, Write Club, Salonathon, This Much Is True, others.) Mary’s writing has been published by Soft Skull Press (“Madonna & Me”) and Write Bloody Publishing (“Learn Then Burn: A Poetry Anthology For the Classroom”); her first book, “Quilts To Make Love Under” will be published by Stash Books/C&T Publishing in 2014. For more, visit maryfons.com.
FARAZ HUSSAIN has lived in an abandoned grain silo, taken care of an octopus, and biked both naked as well as all the way to Milwaukee—twice—although not at the same time. He lives in Bridgeport, works at the Chicago Lighthouse, a pioneering social service agency for people who are blind or visually impaired, and studies Rehabilitation Counseling at Illinois Tech.
ERIN KAHOA spends most his time marking things off his self-made “Chicagoan” checklist, i.e. 23) Get doored on a bicycle and 57) Watch the cubs lose. During the day he splits his time between working as Managing Director of Route 66 Theatre Company and fretting over his ever approaching thesis deadline. The rest of the time he is an uncle, and an amateur hat aficionado, and a proud member of Chicago’s Live Lit scene. You can read more of his work at arbitrarydistraction.blogspot.com.
KELLI HONEYSWEET is a proud mother raising two handsome boys. She is also a Chicago Native, a full-time straight-A student, and a performer. As a singer, Kelli has performed for many different events, from weddings and conventions and rodeos and county fairs, to appearing as a soloist in front of 2,000 people at the Museum of Natural History. She sings in various genres from pop to RnB to contemporary country. She has even sung in a Christian Rock Band, and has laid down vocal tracks for various rap artists in Chicago, St. Louis and Columbus. When Kelli’s name was plucked from a jar at Grown Folks Stories, founded by her childhood friend Cara Brigandi, Kelli caught the Storytelling fever. She went on to become a regular Storyteller at Grown Folks stories and has also been featured at Stoop-Style Stories founded by Lily Be. She has been spreading her wings in additional areas such as Acting, Directing, Keynote Speaking, Creative Writing, and Improv, and is a member of the Improv group Laugh Coma and will be appearing in two roles in Buffy the Vampire Slayer the Musical on May 2nd, 3rd, and 4th at Truman College. You can subscribe to her You Tube channel: TheFunnyHoneyTube.
Here’s the Story, May 5th
7:30 potluck/8:00 show
Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont
$8 tickets sold online and at the door, or free with a dish to share