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 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! We can’t wait to see what you’ve got, Chicago!

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