One of the first comments people make to me when I tell them about Listen To Your Mother is “You should bring the tour to my town!” Then I explain as succinctly as possible that LTYM is a grass-roots movement of original shows–all different from one another– rather than a tour of a play, and that cities interested in hosting a show fill out an application in the fall.
When people email me for an application, it comes with a comprehensive and very direct letter about what the process of hosting an LTYM show looks like. For example (taken directly from application):
This will be a lot of work. A lot. Of work. Bringing an LTYM show to your community will very likely challenge you to work in areas you might never have even considered: making casting decisions among friends and strangers, finding and negotiating with venues and subcontractors (videographer, photographer, etc), publicizing auditions and your production, drumming up PR, conducting auditions and running rehearsals, likely working with a tiny budget and looking for every possible local community trade and discount you can find—just to name a few.
I try to prepare them as much as possible, but like child-rearing or home-schooling or starting your own business, the reality of the experience often looks much harder (and hopefully richer) than you originally imagined when you signed-on. Yet, people still flock to host the show–many returning year after year, and all for different reasons.
One of the reasons people find motivation to host a show is to create their own opportunity to share their story at a microphone before their community. Taking your personal writing from the page, to public storytelling at a microphone, holds tremendous power and potential. Springing your literal voice from your literary voice can entertain and forge connections with the audience, inspire change in yourself and others, boost self-confidence while encouraging others by example, and even build or repair bridges within families and communities with LTYM’s priceless “me too” moments between reader and listener (As in “me, too, you spoke my truth up there”). LTYM knows countless examples of reader’s lives changing from this simple, yet powerful act of Giving Motherhood A Microphone.
LTYM exists, in part, because of my own desire to interact and perform with an audience, and I highly encourage our local directors and producers to take the opportunity to read at their own shows. And let’s face it, after more than six months work (creating and promoting two events –auditions and the show–casting, directing and rehearsing, producing, financing, promoting, and on and on) it’s a small-yet-mighty and sweet reward. These talented women are visionaries, writers, and storytellers who’ve given hours and hours of their time and talents over months and years to LTYM, and supporting and sharing their work is LTYM’s pride and pleasure.
Please enjoy this playlist featuring many of our 2014 local director/producers, who make our local shows possible!!