If you've never heard of The Moth, allow me to introduce you to this wonderful organisation.
They are a global community dedicated to promoting the art of storytelling as a celebration of human experience and diversity. The Moth was founded in New York City in 1997, produces over 500 live events each year in 29 cities around the world, hosts workshops and education programs, publishes NYT Bestseller List collections of stories, and has its own Peabody Award winning radio show and podcast.
Each live Moth event starts with a theme, announced in advance. The Moth StorySLAMs are open-mic style events, where attendees can put their names into a hat in order to share their 5 minute, 100% true story related to the night's theme. After ten StorySLAMs in a city, winners from the StorySLAMs compete for the title of GrandSLAM Champion with a brand new story with a brand new theme. The SLAM events feel like a mixture of stand-up, theatre and documentary, and the stories told run the gamut from tragic to hilarious.
Last week, I had the absolute pleasure of photographing my second Melbourne GrandSLAM at the National Theatre in St. Kilda. The theme of the evening was 'When Worlds Collide,' hosted by comedian and TV personality Cal Wilson. I love event photography, especially when it's such a special event as this, so I really wanted to share some of my photographs from the evening.
Click to enlarge.
The storytellers on the night were (in order of appearance):
- Andy Cameron
- Matt McArthur
- May Jasper
- Lisa Carroll
- Wade Kelly
- Jacob Kaye
- Louise Newton-Keogh
- Tess Birch
- Janine Hilling
- Steven Bell
This year's GrandSLAM winner was Louise Newton-Keogh with a moving story from her childhood about her father's alcoholism and attempted suicide, and their worlds colliding 10 years later.
Special thanks to Merrilee McCoy for having me along, and for producing all of the great Moth events in Melbourne. The next Melbourne event is a StorySLAM open-mic on July 2nd at Howler. Check out the Facebook Event - the theme for this one is 'Age.' Come & tell your story!