Calling all stage-hungry Salooners: this month, we want you to entertain us! In honour of our special guest, prodigal Edmonton son Alan Reed, we’re hosting the My Hometown Story Slam. . .featuring YOU, live onstage!
In the grand tradition of Canadian letters, we have ripped off this idea from Americans—in particular a venerable story-slamming institution known as “The Moth”. They do it well, so we’re taking a page—well, pretty much all the pages—from their book. Here’s how it will work.
1) Prepare a 5 minute story around the theme “My Hometown”. Remember no notes, papers, or cheat sheets will be allowed on stage.
2) You’ll be judged on sticking to the five-minute time frame, sticking to the theme and telling a good story—one with a conflict and a resolution. Don’t meander, waffle, rant, do stand-up comedy or a ‘dramatic monologue’. Just be yourself, telling your story.
3) Download a few Moth podcasts or check out their website for a good sense of good storytelling. http://www.themoth.org/podcast
4) Other Moth recommendations: Start in on the action (eg. “So there I was in the kitchen, screaming at my father that he had always loved the budgie more than me, when suddenly he clutched his chest. . .”), and steer clear of meandering endings. Your last line should be clear in your head before you start.
Eager participants will be asked to put their name in a bag before the Saloon begins, and we’ll choose around 5 performers for the evening. A cadre of serious, exacting (if not exactly ober) celebrity judges will rate the stories on a scale of 1-10 and at the end of the evening the winner will be awarded one of our always-fabulous Literary Saloon prizes.
But that’s not all! Participating in our story-themed evening will be:
- Novelist Lynn Coady, whetting the audience’s appetite with a story from the wilds of her island home of Cape Breton.
- And a big welcome home to former Edmontonian Alan Reed, debuting his new novel Isobel and Emile (“Young love, marionettes, and very short sentences.”) . . .fresh off the press from Coach House Books.
- Plus. . . prizes! Sur-prises!