Tag: storytelling

“Share Our Stories” Collages

Our own Kelly Jean Fitzsimmons’ SU-CASA artist residency at the CCNS Woodhaven Neighborhood Senior Center recently culminated with a “Share Our Stories” final event featuring story collages made from the participants’ memoirs.

Take a look some the stories the fine folks at Woodhaven shared!

Click here to view the rest of the collages on our Facebook page.

“Share Our Stories” Event

Earlier this year, our own Kelly Jean Fitzsimmons was awarded a 2017 SU-CASA artist-in-residence grant through the Queens Council on the Arts to positively impact the well-being of older adults through arts-based activities. Her residency at the CCNS Woodhaven Neighborhood Senior Center culminates this Friday, June 9th, with a “Share Our Stories” showcase at the center.

Starting at 1 pm, this special event features storytelling, story collages, songs (and snacks!) inspired by the true-life tales the fabulous folks at Woodhaven shared with her, and each other, for the past few months. Kelly Jean is thrilled to be co-hosting this story-palooza with her Sip-N-Scribe partner in crime Jenn Wehrung (NYTI “Three Strikes” alum, Laugh It Up, Astoria!).

We’re also stoked to share that NYTI “Legacy” artist Sha-Nee Williams  returned to created an original painting of one of the workshop participant’s beloved cat. This stunning piece, which will be on display at the event, was based solely on Susan’s written description (see below) of her cat, Candy.

Susan’s cat, Candy, as imagined by Sha-Nee Williams

My cat’s name is Candy. She is 12 years old, but she is pretty frisky for her age. Her coloring is very hard to describe, but I would say she is dark gray with some calico in the back. She is a short-haired cat with a long gray tail. Candy is a big fat cat, very roly poly with a white tummy and white feet, but she is orangey around the legs. My God, I don’t even know how much she weighs! Maybe 15 pounds?

We feed her moist food in the morning and dry at night. Candy used to love Temptations but suddenly she doesn’t like them anymore. She is a very docile cat, sleeps all the time. We got her from the North Shore Animal League. We wanted an older cat. She was about eight years old when we took her home and that was four years ago. She has a tiny cry, “meow, meow, meow” with a tiny little mouth. Sometimes she doesn’t even make a noise. She just opens her mouth and a tiny “peep” comes out. I remember she used to have a tiny ball with a bell that she played with a lot, but it got lost.

Candy always sleeps next to me, she is very attached to me. She stares at me with these big beautiful eyes. I tell there that she’s “my pretty little girl” and she blinks her eyes. Blinks them slowly, as if I was putting her asleep.

Ready for more? Join us this Friday, June 9th, at 1 pm at the CCNS Woodhaven Neighborhood Senior Center (89-02 91st St, Jamaica, NY 11421) to hear some stories, see story collages made from the writing generated during the weekly memoir workshops, sing songs, and eat snacks!


Partners of the 2017 SU-CASA artist-in-residence grant

Meet Our “Migration” Storytellers

Mar 22 2017 @ 7:00PM

Who are our “Migration” storytellers for Wednesday’s show? I’m so glad you asked!

Ken Crossland is a writer, children’s book designer, podcaster, and comedian from New York City. He’s the founder of the Curious Civilian, a website dedicated to politics and policy, and is a contributing editor to the Huffington Post, writing about government. You can follow him on Twitter (@kencrossland), curiouscivilian.com, or by typing his name into Google, and seeing what comes up.

Elisa DeCarlo is a writer/performer who has performed solo shows around the country, including the critically acclaimed “Toasted,” based on a real-life murder case, and “I Love Drugs”. Her work has been collected in “Cervix With A Smile: Comic Sketches and Plays by Elisa DeCarlo” (Exit Press). She has written comedy for National Public Radio, TV Land and Nickelodeon.  Elisa is also a novelist, writer of “The Abortionist’s Daughter,” “The Devil You Say,” and “Strong Spirits”, the latter two published by Avon.  As a journalist she has been published in The New York Times, New York magazine, Sarah Lawrence magazine, and others.

Erika Iverson is a director and dramaturg for No, YOU Tell It! and has participated in almost every one of their shows as a director, performer, or both. She is a certified instructor of the Alexander Technique and an enthusiastic director of one-woman shows. She was last seen on stage at La Mama ETC as a clown of ambiguous gender and the embodiment of Air in Magis Theatre Company’s production of Calderon’s Two Dreams. She is super grateful to Kelly Jean, who provides Erika with deadlines and shames her into showing up for things on time. Thanks KJ!

Leslie Malaika Lewis is an actress, writer and producer best known for creating the solo show Miracle in Rwanda. She is the leading lady and lead producer of the film With Child, available for streaming on iTunes and Amazon. Leslie starred as Dorothy Dandridge at the National Black Theater. A Harvard graduate, she has a MFA in Acting from UCLA. Awards: The Streisand Sony Award at UCLA and an AUDELCO and Jessie Award nominee. She is a proud member of Actors’ Equity, The Magis Theater Company and The Actors Center. She thanks God, her family and friends for their support.

See you at 7 pm at Jimmy’s No. 43. We will open the back room right at 7 for the show, but feel free to come early for drinks/food in the bar area. (no min or max on either!)

CLICK HERE to RSVP via Facebook.

Event Information

Mar 22 2017 @ 7:00PM

Jimmy's No 43 (43 East 7th btwn 2nd & 3rd Aves)

Up Next: Our “Migration” Show

Mar 22 2017 @ 7:00PM

Our next show is in ONE WEEK. See you back at our old stomping grounds, Jimmy’s No. 43, for a night of switched-up stories inspired by the theme “Migration” from:

Ken Crossland, Elisa DeCarlo, Leslie Lewis, and our very own Erika Iverson!

Click here to RSVP via Facebook.

Check back soon to meet our “Migration” storytellers!

Event Information

Mar 22 2017 @ 7:00PM

Jimmy's No. 43 (43 East 7th between 2nd and 3rd Aves)

Episode 16 – Wild Card

Today’s “Two on Tuesday” stories were performed live at Jimmy’s No. 43 as part of our WILD CARD show.

Lucky at cards, unlucky in love. Can you be unlucky at both? And what if the cards are being dealt by a psychic? Her story “All in the Cards” was the first time writer Shelley Gazes’ work was performed live, but we are happy to say it wasn’t the last. Shelley’s come back to take part in No, YOU Tell It! alumni events, and perform her stories at The Moth’s StorySLAMs.  Give a listen to the story that started it all, performed here by Nelson Lugo.

wild card

(Wild Card inspired artwork by Sarah Gentile.)

Now, switching it up, magician Nelson Lugo’s one-man shows feature slight-of-hand and are full of heart as he interweaves magic with storytelling. We were honored to have him come develop this deeply personal tale with us about magic, mental institutions, and the miracle of a well-made cookie.  Here is “Crazy Sad” written by Nelson Lugo and performed by Shelley Gazes.


These stories were performed on Wed, September 17th 2014. Here are the storytellers’ bios from that evening:

Shelley Gazes has studied fiction and nonfiction writing at Barnard College, Sarah Lawrence College’s Writing Institute, Gotham Writers Workshop, and MediaBistro. Her work has appeared in The Journal News and The Huffington Post. She is also a regular volunteer for 826NYC’s storytelling field trips for children, helping students to foster their own creative voices. She’s excited for her work to be performed for the first time with No, YOU Tell It! and looks forward to taking part in more storytelling events in the future.

Nelson Lugo is a Magician, Sideshow Artist, and Batman enthusiast. He was featured by TimeOut NY as an Entertainer to Watch and co-hosts a podcast called “The EPIC PIEcast” for NerdyShow.com. He’s been a guest speaker for The Sunday Assembly NYC, a guest singer for the BTK Band, a storyteller at Adam Wade’s Whatever Happened to the Nerds, and was featured on the Story Collider podcast twice. He is currently performing a solo show called “Gathering The Magic” at The Tank Theater which you can see on Saturday September 20th that is slice-of-life storytelling and sophisticated stage magic. More info at NelsonLugo.com.

Episode 6 – Revival

Today’s “Two on Tuesday” stories are from our ‘Revival’ show recorded live at Jimmy’s No. 43.

How much should we reveal about ourselves? And what exactly do we leave behind?  Jessica Cannon contemplates these questions for the digital era in her story “Internets is Forever,” performed here by Matthew Trumbull.

Revival photo

How often have you found yourself in the midst of a terrible situation from which you couldn’t escape? What if you were literally center stage? Switching it up, Jessica Cannon performs Matthew Trumbull’s harrowing tale, “Last of the Metamoras.”

These stories from our ‘Revival’ show on April 15th, 2015, at Jimmy’s No. 43 were directed by Erika Iverson. Here are the storytellers bios from that evening:

Jessica Cannon is a New York City based actress and voiceover artist whose voice can be heard in national television commercials and radio spots for major brands such as Twizzlers, ALL, Citibank, AT&T, Hershey’s Kisses, Coffee Mate, Nexxus, Smirnoff Ice, Nesquik, and many others. Her work also includes voicing promos, cartoons and video games. She is an avid reader and a classically trained musician. If you’re young enough, you may remember her from your potty training days as the host of Potty Power, the number two best-selling potty-training DVD on Amazon (no pun intended, Elmo beat us to the number one spot).

Matthew Trumbull is an actor and writer, and was featured as a storyteller earlier this month in Soundtrack Series at QED in Astoria.  He will next be appearing in the play The Butter and Egg Man produced by Retro Productions at the Gene Frankel Theater, opening May 15th, and the feature film ‘The Spike’, written by Mac Rogers.  Previously this year, he starred in the opera/theater piece The Velvet Oratorio by Edward Einhorn and Henry Akona, and the play The Temple by Nat Cassidy, at the Brick Theater.


October 20, 2015 Post Comment Podcast Tags: , ,

Visit Us & TLR at the Brooklyn Book Festival!

Thank you to everyone who came out to our special team-up show with The Literary Review on Wednesday at Jimmy’s No. 43.

TLR greats Kahle Alford (Associate Prose Editor) and Tim Waldron (Online Fiction Editor) ended up hitting it out of the park when they swapped their ‘3 Strikes’ stories.

3 Strikes Kahle and Tim

Sad you missed the show and the chance to win some literary swag?

Good news. Subscribe to our NEW NYTI Weekly PODCAST and you can hear Kahle and Tim’s stories when their episode airs this week. You can also visit us at The Literary Review’s booth at the Brooklyn Book Festival today – Sunday, September 20th. #246!

Heading into Fall with 3 Strikes

Sep 16 2015 @ 7:00PM


We’re excited to head into fall with  3 Strikes, taking place Sept.16th at 7PM (details here). We reached out to artist Sebastian Moya to create this striking image for the show. Here are his thoughts on the theme and his process:

When I heard the theme for this installment of No, You Tell It! my first thought was, of course, baseball.  But a very close second were three strikes sentencing laws, whereby repeat offenders receive harsher sentences after their third offense.  Such policies were enacted by 24 states in the mid-1990s as part of a “Tough on Crime” movement which led to our current rates of incarceration, the highest in the developed world.

At a time when public opinion is turning against these kinds of policies, this seemed like a timely subject.  The use of sporting terminology in criminal justice seems trivializing, so I thought mixing the two, by covering a prison cell with baseball wallpaper, would be suitably absurd.  Surrounding those that have “struck out” and landed in jail with antagonistic pitchers adds a more sinister note to the seemingly childish decoration though. On a more technical note, I’ve been meaning to learn to make repeat patterns and work more with vector art, so that definitely informed the illustration as well!

About the Artist: Sebastian Moya is a New York based cartoonist and librarian with a BA in Art and Linguistics from Swarthmore College and a Masters in Library Science from Pratt Institute.  He has provided illustrations for Murmuration Theater, MGSCOMM, authors, and researchers.  As a cataloger he has worked for Gap Inc., Clinique, the Guggenheim, and Smithsonian. His webcomic, comics.sebasm.com, updates weekly.

Event Information

Sep 16 2015 @ 7:00PM

Jimmy's No. 43, East 7th Street, New York, NY, United States, 40.728293, -73.98855100000003

Erika Iverson at City Harvest Benefit

Last night, our own director & dramaturg Erika Iverson eloquently told a story about losing her mother to cancer and the moments of “Grace in the World” where she finds her again.

Erika originally developed this story as part of our Religion show, where it was performed by her gallant partner Jorge Cordova.

The way Jorge embodied and honored Erika’s story at our first show was so powerful, but watching Erika bring everything full circle by stepping back into her shoes and sharing her deeply emotional experience was a true moment of grace.

The event was Bloom: Becoming Who You Are an evening of storytelling and song produced by OSNY Productions benefiting City Harvest.

The musician following Erika complimented her on her performance saying,

They say vulnerability is the new currency…

To which, Erika immediately threw her hands up in the air and shouted,

I’m rich!!

Thank you to all of the NYTI switched-up storytellers we have worked with over the last 3 years. Your stories, generosity, and vulnerability has made us rich!

You know, in a George Bailey kind of way. We’re still working on the other way. More soon…

NYTI: Fiction Edition Coming Soon!

Jun 17 2015 @ 7:00PM

In June, we like switching-up the switch-up to do something new! We had a blast last year with our LEGACY show at The Brick’s Comic Book Theater Festival.

On June 17th, we are thrilled to present our first ever Summer “Fiction Edition.”

We’ve assembled 4 fabulous NYTI alums who switched-up their true-life tales with us previously and are now busy taking on this new

genre. However, our motto still applies: What better way to inform your story than hearing someone else perform your story?

Raquel I. Penzo, author and producer of La Pluma y La Tinta. Upcoming event on 6/25: New Voices in the Boroughs: Queens at Q.E.D. Astoria

Jim Cairl, co-writer with our own Kelly Jean on the web series Intersection

Todd Faulkner, co-creator of the paranormal podcast Uncanny County – coming this fall to a dimension near you…

Katie Johnston, one of the amazing ladies from our “Revelation” workshop at Q.E.D. and who is joining us again this June for our next session. (starts 6/7, click here to grab a spot and switch-up your story!)

Come out for our Summer “Fiction Edition” and help us celebrate 3 years of switched-up storytelling!

Wednesday 6/17, 7 p.m. at Jimmy’s No. 43. RSVP here.

Event Information

Jun 17 2015 @ 7:00PM

Jimmy's No. 43, East 7th Street, New York, NY, United States

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