LTYM Chicago 2017 Submission Period Is Now OPEN!

by Melisa on January 13, 2017

LTYM essay

It’s here, it’s here! Today is finally here!

We are NOW accepting submissions for Chicago’s 2017 Listen To Your Mother Show, which will be held on Sunday May 7 at 2:00pm, at the gorgeous Athenaeum Theatre! From today, January 13, until 11:59pm CT on January 31, all submissions are welcome for consideration.

Please make sure to read and understand these details before you submit your true motherhood story:

1. IMPORTANT: Each piece must fall between 3-5 minutes when read aloud. This is approximately 2 pages, but will vary widely depending on format, content, and speaking style. PLEASE PRACTICE BEFORE SUBMITTING and edit appropriately to achieve the desired time. (Note: we cannot emphasize how important the time of your essay is. It’s okay if it’s a little over five minutes, but if it’s way over then your chances of being selected for the show will likely decrease. Also, please note that all essays are subject to light editing, for time or other reasons if eventually selected for our show.) Do not memorize your essay. This is a show of readings. We WANT you to read it!

2. The main theme of your piece must have something to do with “motherhood.” Any true story about any aspect of motherhood is great! If you’re unsure whether the MAIN theme of your essay is motherhood, please read it to a friend or two and ask them! If your friends tell you that the main theme of your essay seems to be “overcoming a self esteem problem” or “dating in the 21st century” (Just pulled those from the air), then you’ll need to do some heavy editing or submit something else. You do not have to be a mother (or a professional writer!) or even a woman to submit an essay! Read this post we wrote about the non-mom perspective.

3. We always look for a diverse mix of stories. In addition, we look for funny essays, sad essays, and everything in between. (Note #1: HUMOR can be so very difficult to write–and read out loud effectively–and every year this is the category in which we have the least number of submissions. If one of your superpowers is writing humorous essays, please consider submitting one! Note #2: By diverse we also mean race, religion, ethnicity, personality type, and every other element under the sun that could provide a story with unique perspective.)

4. Keep in mind that we advertise our show as PG-13 due to some mature topics. Anything with strong language will likely be edited for a wide audience: we want to put together a show that you can watch with your mom and grandma! And sisters! And husbands! And teens! Long story short, if your essay is chock-full of expletives, it won’t be selected.

5. You must be the author and owner of all rights to your piece. It’s totally fine if it’s been previously published as long as you retain the rights, and you will still hang onto the rights to your piece if selected for the show.

6. If you have submitted an essay previously that we have asked you to read for us at auditions, it’s totally fine to submit the same one if you’d like.

7. ONLY ONE SUBMISSION PER PERSON. We are firm on this. If you can’t decide between two, please don’t send both; ask someone close to you to help decide on ONE before emailing us.

8. You must be available for the following dates/times:

Auditions: Friday February 17th or Saturday February 18th or Sunday February 19th (various audition time slots available)
Rehearsal: Saturday March 18, 12-3 pm
Rehearsal: Sunday April 9, 3-6 pm
Show Date: Sunday May 7, 11-7 (approximately)

Please know that we make both rehearsals mandatory not only so our cast members can practice together, but also because this is a very important part of the bonding process and the experience as a whole.

9. Send your essay to ltymchicago@gmail.com with the title of your piece and the words “2017 submission” in the subject line. Example: a submission titled “My Motherhood Story” would have a subject line that says: “My Motherhood Story, 2017 submission.”

We will email everyone who submits with a confirmation of receipt within 24 hours. Audition invitations will be emailed between February 3-6.

Please note that all cities have their own guidelines and if you’re interested in any other show you should check their local website for details, which will be updated according to their own schedules! If you’d like to subscribe to the LTYM National newsletter, click the link in our sidebar.

If you have questions, please ask in the comments or email us at LTYMChicago@gmail.com! We can’t wait to see what you’ve got, Chicago!

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2017 Non-Profit Choice!

by Tracey on January 4, 2017

For the past 5 years that Listen To Your Mother has been in Chicago, we have been honored to choose non-profit organizations that will benefit from the profits generated by our ticket sales. 10% of all ticket proceeds have been donated to Bright Pink, Greater Chicago Food Depository, Recovery on WaterThe Red Pump Project, and Mujeres Latinas en Accion.  A lot of thought and consideration is put into this decision, so it is with huge smiles that Melisa and I have chosen Deborah’s Place as the beneficiary of the 2017 Chicago show.

dp-logo-2015

Since 1985, after seeing the unique needs of homeless women in Chicago, Deborah’s Place has provided services to ensure that local women have clean, safe, and affordable housing. The organization includes employment programs and on-site health clinics at all 3 facilities and is currently providing permanent, interim, and safe haven housing for women of all ages and abilities.

Their mission statement:

Deborah’s Place opens doors of opportunity for women who are homeless in Chicago. Supportive housing and services offer women their key to healing, achieving their goals and moving on from the experience of homelessness.”

We are so honored to be associated with this amazing organization! Knowing that this year’s finale performance will likely garner the largest audience the Chicago LTYM show has ever had means that we should be able to donate our largest charitable check to date. The thought of that gives us a thrill I cannot describe…

The clock is ticking to the submission period. Do NOT wait because this is it; the last chance to take a chance and make a difference on the Chicago stage. Everyone has a story to tell and we want to hear yours!

Remember the details:

1. IMPORTANT: Each piece must fall between 3-5 minutes when read aloud. This is approximately 2 pages, but will vary widely depending on format, content, and speaking style. PLEASE PRACTICE BEFORE SUBMITTING and edit appropriately to achieve the desired time. (Note: we cannot emphasize how important the time of your essay is. It’s okay if it’s a little over five minutes, but if it’s way over then your chances of being selected for the show will likely decrease.)

2. The main theme of your piece must fall within the topic of “motherhood.” Any true story about any aspect of motherhood is great! If you’re unsure whether the MAIN theme of your essay is motherhood, please read it to a friend or two and ask them! If your friends tell you that the main theme of your essay seems to be “overcoming a self esteem problem” or “dating in the 21st century” (Just pulled those from the air), then you’ll need to do some heavy editing or submit something else.

3. We always look for a diverse mix of stories. In addition, we look for funny essays, sad essays, and everything in between. You don’t have to be a mom to be in a LTYM show. You don’t even have to be a woman! We welcome all stories of motherhood from all people. (Note #1: HUMOR can be so very difficult to write (and read out loud), and every year this is the category in which we have the least number of submissions. If one of your superpowers is writing humorous essays, please consider submitting one! Note #2: By diverse we also mean race, religion, ethnicity, personality type, and every other element under the sun that could provide a story with unique perspective. Check out this post we wrote about angles you can take with your essay if you’re not a mom.)

4. You must be the author and owner of all rights to your piece. (It’s totally fine if it’s been previously published as long as you retain the rights, and you will still hang onto the rights to your piece if selected for the show.)

5. You MUST be available to attend an audition date (February 17-19) and two rehearsal dates (these will be announced when the submission period begins) as well as, obviously, the show date: May 7th from 11-7 (approximately).

6. Submissions will begin on January 13 and end January 31. We CANNOT accept submissions outside of these dates!

Please note that all cities have their own guidelines and if you’re interested in any other show you should check their local website for details, which will be updated according to their own schedules! If you’d like to subscribe to the LTYM National newsletter, click the link in our sidebar.

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Heads Up, Chicago! Let’s Write!

December 13, 2016

It’s almost time, Chicago! Consider this your “one month warning” post… We will be accepting submissions to consider for our SIXTH ANNUAL AND GRAND FINALE Chicago show—which will be held on Sunday May 7, 2017 at the Athenaeum Theatre—starting Friday, January 13th. We wanted to give you some time to get your true stories of motherhood on paper or into the computer! Let’s get writing (or editing), shall we? Are you sitting there thinking you could never write your story because you’re not a writer, or thinking you could never get up on a stage and tell your story because you’re not a professional speaker? Are you thinking you or your story isn’t good enough? Stop it. We’re here to tell you otherwise. This is not a show for professional speakers/writers (though we welcome all levels of experience). LTYM is about Motherhood and Motherhood is for EVERYONE. Your voice and story may be […]

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Get Ready, Chicago…Presenting Our Grand Finale Season!

October 6, 2016

Listen To Your Mother, this amazing movement that has been “giving motherhood a microphone” since that very first show in Madison, Wisconsin back in 2010, is taking its final bow during the 2017 season (Chicago’s sixth!). All of us who have been involved in producing local shows–as well as our Leadership Team–are so very proud of what we’ve achieved, and we’re ready to celebrate all of it as we bring motherhood stories to our local stages one final time. You can read the official announcement here. In the coming months you’ll be learning more about how you can get involved. Tracey and I will be accepting written submissions for our 2017 show in the second half of January 2017, and we’ll also be letting you know how to buy tickets to celebrate in person with us at our home venue, the beautiful Athenaeum Theatre in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago. As always, a […]

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The 2016 Listen To Your Mother Chicago Videos Are Live!

July 15, 2016

They’re here! They’re here! It always feels like a holiday when the new LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER videos are released for all to enjoy. After the triumph of a fantastic season—and 2016 was indeed fantastic, giving motherhood a microphone in 41 cities, resulting in more than 500 new stories to add to our collection—we all wait on the edge of our seats for the day when we can share the stories with the world. Now YOU can check out the stories from the Chicago show and our 40 sister cities on YouTube, at your leisure! We recommend that you watch the Chicago show (and any other city) in “playlist order”, which is how the stories were presented live on May 1. Our whole show can be viewed like that HERE, and here are the links to the individual stories: Kathy Sidney Melisa Francie Beth Megan Bonnie Tracey Mollie Andrea Nina Rachel Pete Don’t […]

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