Thursday, May 19th, 2011
A New Yorker writer who’s spoken everywhere (and conquered Hollywood) telling a story following a scientist who’s never told a story in front of an audience (and who then passes the mic to his son). The winner of our Facebook contest leaving the crowd in stitches right before the founder of the leading hip hop magazines has them in tears. Not one but two storytellers composing original songs inspired by Six-Word Memoirs. Six-Word Memoirs from the crowd such as “She drank me under the table,” “Your bra is not supporting you” and “Preemptively terrified of my childrens’ memoirs.” A packed house on a rainy night. This could only be a SMITH Show, “I Am Turning Into My Mother: Six-Word Memoirs on Mothers and Daughters, Fathers and Sons,” organized way too quickly by way too few people. Thanks to a tremendous group of storytellers, and a warm crowd who came out last night. And I’d like to send a special thanks to event co-producer Ashley Van Buren, SMITH associate editor Meredith Sires, intern Linda Liu, and the whole staff at the 92YTribeca.
In order of appearance, these eleven storytellers broke open their hearts and heads to create an evening that will surely stick to the bones of the 100+ audience members: Laura Zigman (“There’s a bird on your head.”), Joe Lockhart (“Will you have this opportunity again?”), Tameka Mullins (“I wasn’t born. I was adopted.”), Deborah Copaken Kogan (“Hospital bound, contractions fierce, taxi stolen.”— video, above), Christoph Marshall (“Adoption inspired by desperation and ambition.”), Edwardo Comacho (“The day I adopted my Dad.”), Susan Orlean (“I have begun ironing his underpants.”—watch the video), Gesine Bullock-Prado (“Don’t tell the neighbors I’m dying.”), Brian O’Leary (“Growing up, older than you were.”), James Bernard (”Will I tiger dad my son?”), and musician Francesca Garrard, who created two original songs from dozens of Six-Word Memoirs.
Below: Joe Lockhart, former Clinton Press Secretary, tells the backstory behind his Six-Word Memoir about his father, “Will you have this opportunity again?” Joe’s story reveals why those six words from father to son had an afterlife beyond what he knew at the time, with a lesson he’ll never forget. And you, well, you’ll have the opportunity to see another Six-Word Story show on July 25 at the 92YTribeca. Stay tuned for details.