Each May, from Listen To Your Mother stages across the country, voices reach out in celebration of motherhood and wrap community audiences in a collective storytelling embrace. The impressions last well beyond the shows. Some audience members will be moved to audition for the next season. Former cast members will lovingly nudge their friends to take a turn at the podium. People watching LTYM videos online will fall in love with the show and apply to produce one in their own cities. Strangers will encounter fliers at community centers, coffee shops, and college campuses and be swept up in the movement.
No matter how it finds you, or the nature of its impact, the effects of Listen To Your Mother are significant and enduring…
“I expected that sharing my story at Listen To Your Mother would be powerful and healing. But I had no idea how my heart would be broken open and put back together again by the stories that this incredible tribe of storytellers shared. In the course of just a few rehearsals and a performance, I fell in love with these women. I have been transformed by their wisdom and grace.” -Sage Cohen , 2014 Portland Cast Member, “Finding My Gold”
“Having heard about Listen To Your Mother from friends in California, I was hoping there was a show somewhere in the region that I would be able to see. Enter Portland. The Rose City did not disappoint. All I wanted for Mother’s Day 2014 was to see Listen To Your Mother, no brunch, no corsages, just a place where I could reconnect with everything I had associated with motherhood. Again, Portland delivered…and then some. Assembled with love and honor, the stories were interwoven with laughter, tears, and breathless wonder. While each cast member had their own unique message, in every one I was able to find a moment of, “Me too.” Once the show concluded, I experienced gratitude for the joy it delivered, and small sorrow for only being a spectator. The power of the message and the sisterhood who delivered it, inspired me to become part of the production posse and bring this incredible undertaking to my home city of Seattle.” -Joy Steele, 2014 Portland Audience Member turned 2015 LTYM: Seattle Producer.
“LTYM gave me a chance to be brave, to speak about something I had kept a secret a long time and to cast my wish and prayer to become a mother into the universe. It was about finding my authentic voice, and becoming the writer-storyteller I kept sensing was in me. And it ultimately was about finding my “tribe,” a daring group of people who welcomed me and continue to inspire me, as mothers, writers, and as strong women.” -Jessica Peyton-Roberts, 2014 Cast Member, “Wait for Me”
“As a fan of LTYM I was thrilled to see the show coming to Boston in 2014. I worked up the courage to audition and that experience alone was life changing. With a recent move across the country, I am now co-producing/directing Seattle 2015. Everybody has a story and Listen To Your Mother is your opportunity to be heard!” -Jennifer Scharf, 2014 Auditionee turned 2015 LTYM: Seattle Producer
“My LTYM experience was beyond my wildest dreams satisfying! Remarkable and delightfully quirky women, never ending support, laughter … oh, the laughter, even a precious new baby! It’s a bond that continues to this day. How fortunate I feel for the entire experience!” -Tracey Barnes Priestly, 2014 Cast Member, “A Matter of Choice”
“My wife, Joy, and I attended the Portland edition of “Listen to Your Mother” last May, and were so moved by the production that our entire conversation heading home to Seattle that afternoon was how to bring the show northward. We were inspired by the heart-warming stories shared, and the knowledge that the show was helping a local charity. I was so inspired by the Portland show, that I’m proudly providing production support for the upcoming “Listen to Your Mother” show in Seattle this May.” -Dan Steele, 2014 Audience Member turned LTYM:Seattle production support.
“Listen To Your Mother gave me the unique opportunity to share a story from my heart with a fantastic audience. But even better, it introduced me to 13 of the most wonderful, intelligent, and loving women I’ve ever met in my life. We shared something beautiful and sacred in our rehearsals and on that stage and I’ll be forever grateful for the experience and the lasting friendships I gained from LTYM.” -Leanne Goolsby, 2014 Cast Member, “Unexpectedly Expecting”
“Fourteen brave souls shared the Alberta Rose stage last May to present Portland’s first Listen to Your Mother show, a live-audience reading of stories celebrating the universal themes of being, or having, a mother. Whether you’re one of the select few who will stand on stage for the 2015 show or will be found in a plush velvet seat as an audience member, you’re in for a treat. Motherhood has been forever. Last May, our stories lit up the stage for one fine day, and we were changed for the better. You will be too!” -Deb Stone, 2014 Cast Member, “Mr. Potato Head’s Secret Life”
Our hearts are overflowing with fond memories from our first year and fluttering in anticipation for the new stories we are about to hear. We’re heading into auditions this weekend, and will emerge with the 2015 cast. Stay tuned!