Last Monday saw the Moth’s weekly StorySLAM brought to The Bitter End, a small venue on Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village. The Bitter End is certainly more prestigious than it first appears, claiming the title of New York City’s oldest rock ‘n’ roll club, playing early host to streams of big names from Bob Dylan to Stevie Wonder, whilst having given a springboard start in the past to artists such as Lady Gaga and Norah Jones. This week’s theme was ‘Retaliation’, which triggered stories rooted in both serious and purely hilarious circumstances. A strong favourite of the night was first time storyteller, our very own Polly Scates, grasping the audience’s attention with a story of true, earned revenge on an ex (with a charming English accent to sweeten the deal, of course).
The night’s winner was Tara, who will go on to tell her story in the next GrandSLAM, competing against other SLAM favourites. Following this particular SLAM, I began having ideas about what I might start work on for my project during my time at the Moth. After considering various examples of past Media Intern projects, it had certainly been difficult to conjure an idea of what hasn’t been done, so what could be done that’s new, but also what needs to be done. Consistently, I find that the Moth is tricky to explain to those unfamiliar with the concept. For people coming to the idea cold, without any knowledge of the events, podcasts or radio hour, it can be a new and slightly baffling notion to absorb. However, once presented with any of these channels, the Moth is no longer a challenge to understand, and what often then arises is the realisation of how quietly addictive the notion of live stories can be, both for the listener and the performer. Therefore, in order to gather everything that is core to it, I can think of no better way to capture the energy, sincerity and community of the Moth than to create a mini-film featuring StorySLAM footage, interviews with audience members and storytellers alike, plus a good few dashings of the stories, so that someone new to the Moth might be able to grasp in a second what this is really all about. Anyway, more on this to follow.