Saturday, May 24, 2008

The Moth (in a theatre near you)!

This time: an idea and some links.

I'm obviously obsessed with storytelling. And, by now you should know about The Moth in New York, one of the best bastions of storytelling.

The Moth is way cool, and I want to attend some performances there at some point. Maybe I'll do some study-program biz-nass in New York if I'm lucky.

Emily Gilbert directed me to a profile of The Moth by Adam Bright. Seriously, it's worth a read. The hook of his article:

"It takes a rare kind of courage to live like a character in a story, and not many real-life human beings have the nerve to try it—perhaps because the elements that make a narrative compelling also make life miserable. Most people are too attached to the things that make them happy (honor, love, and friendship) to appreciate the subtle appeal of those things that might make them into more interesting protagonists (disgrace, heartbreak, and loneliness).

Luckily, though, even prudent people will occasionally commit spectacular acts of mischief in pursuit of happiness. And when they do, the Moth is waiting—with an audience and a microphone."
This brings us to the idea. Here it is.

I went to see the latest Indiana Jones tonight. This was the opening weekend, so we got there earlier than usual to make sure we could score a good seat. Of course, this meant that we had to endure about a half an hour of pre-preview trivia and advertisements.

This got me thinking. Everyone likes stories. That's why we were all gathered there at the movie theater. What if we had a little story-telling session and shared a common experience at the same time, actually interacting with each other instead of just sitting, glazed over in front of the screen?

So my idea was this: What if I walked down to the front of the theater, got everyone's attention and made a suggestion? What if I explained briefly what The Moth was, and then asked them if they were interested in trying an experiment? I would tell a story, and then someone else could go next. They would be short anecdotes, real, fictional or somewhere in between. Funny, embarrassing, sad or heartwarming.

That way, we could all share something together and a the same time find out a little more about each other. Unfortunately, as I was thinking this over, the previews began. Maybe next time.

Or maybe you could do it. Seriously, I think it could be a great, telling experiment, but it would take some pride-swallowing and the willingness to look silly. Do you have what it takes?

1 comment:

Emily Moberly said...

HI SETH! i didn't actually read your whole post, but anything involving you and emily gilbert must be insanely amazing!