So, back in May, I attended the monthly Twin Cities branch of the Moth Radio Hour, performed at the Amsterdam Bar and Hall in Downtown St. Paul. The Amsterdam seems to have become one of my favorite venues in recent months, with a pretty good beer list and some delicious Netherlands style Frites.
The Moth, “True Stories Told Live,” is one of my favorite events there. Coinciding with events in locations throughout the nation and the world, the Moth celebrates the “art and craft of storytelling,” by inviting people to step up to the mike to share their own stories, based on a chosen theme. I am big follower of the Moth Story Hour NPR radio show and podcast, and I find storytelling in general to be a very interesting and dynamic genre. When your own life is dull and mundane, how fun is it to live vicariously (and learn) by listening to others. What a great way to gain insight into other viewpoints, lives, and experiences and learn how others transform their dull and mundane lives into interesting and affirming tales. Some of the stories are heartbreaking, some are hilarious, and some bridge the gap between these; some are action-packed, some languid. All are wonderful.
At each Moth event at the Amsterdam, the audience is invited to write their name down and throw it into a hat to be randomly drawn to perform at this month’s show. A few rules are provided, as expressed on the sign here.
The theme at the Amsterdam in May was Adventure, a fitting one for me, of course, though in spite of a few beers, I did not have the confidence, quite yet, to step up and throw my name into the hat. There were a lot of exciting, funny, and affecting pieces shared, from road trips, camping in Alaskan bear country, among others. The favorite piece is then voted upon by the audience and submitted to this years’ Moth Grand Slam, which I wrote about last June, and a chance to even appear on the radio show/podcast!
The next show is on Wednesday this week, with a theme of Balance, “maintaining equilibrium in a board room or on a surf board.” I’ve made it a goal this year to throw my name into the hat at some show this year; we will see if that happens!
Amsterdam Bar and Hall, 6th and Wabasha, St. Paul. Easy walking distance from St. Paul Central Station Green Line, parking lot available across street. Moth Story Slam tickets $8 online, $10 at door. Doors open at 6:30, stories start at 7!