When the Lines Go Down Story Evening | Buzz Blog

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

When the Lines Go Down Story Evening

Posted By on February 7, 2012, 2:14 PM

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A new community evening hosts true stories, told live, by you.---

The New York City-based non-profit The Moth, aside from the popular podcast of the same name, hosts live storytelling events throughout the country ... but not in Salt Lake City. “If The Moth wasn’t going to come out here, we’d do something with that idea,” says When the Lines Go Down Story Evening founder Leland McCarthy.

“What captivates me about The Moth is the poignancy and the stark vulnerability of the stories. On top of that, they are profound. That makes for a great story,” McCarthy says, adding that he wanted to create an event to see the community come together. “I also think it’s important to document these people’s stories. I believe everyone has one.”

WTLGDSE began in January, and McCarthy says he hopes to have at least two evenings a month in the future, hosted at Mo’s Neighborhood Grill on Sunday at 6:30 p.m.

This local story evening, like The Moth, has a theme each night -- so far, the themes have been “Something New,” “Stories about the Law,” “Accidents” and “On the Road.” Would-be storytellers add their name to a suitcase on stage; the first name is drawn randomly and after that storyteller finishes, they draw the next name. Each person gets five to eight minutes to tell a true story.

“We are the sum of our experiences, and those experiences are the stories,” McCarthy says.

The Moth, founded in 1997, generally hosts prominent literary and cultural personalities to tell stories. WTLGDSE is free and open to the public, so you never know what, or the quality, of what you might hear. There is usually time for 12 stories each night.

The folks who didn’t get to tell their story are allowed a brief moment on the mic at the end of the evening to tell its first few lines. “It leaves some mystery and wanting, which is sometimes really exciting,” McCarthy says.

The next event will be Sunday, Feb. 12, 6:30 p.m., and the theme (just in time for Valentine’s Day) is “Shot Through the Heart: Stories of Love.” More information on the event can be found by searching for When the Lines Go Down event pages on Facebook.

Photo by Michael Henry Hackett III

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