If you’ll recall, last April I had the honor of co-producing and directing, along with my wonderful friend Liz McGuire, the 2nd Annual Listen to Your Mother Austin show. (By the way, at our first annual LTYM show, and older man came up to me after it was over and said, “Isn’t the word ‘annual’ a bit optimistic, my dear?” I really couldn’t argue with that logic, but I still made sure to stick my tongue out at him when his back was turned.)
As I’ve mentioned here before, LTYM is the brainchild of the incomparable Ann Imig who started it in Madison, Wisconsin three years ago. Last year, it expanded to 10 cities, including New York, Chicago, San Francisco and Philadelphia and hopefully, next year it’ll make it to somewhere even more exciting like the bright lights of Fargo, North Dakota. I’m sure all of my cousins would absolutely love it. “Oh, yah, sure, you betcha, we love da moms here dontchaknow!”
When putting the Austin show together last year, Liz and I received over 80 submissions from local writers. And man, is there some talent in this town. Amazing, amazing talent. But also, we had such a plethora of different stories and experiences to read. And like snowflakes and Kardashian noses, no two were exactly alike.
I like to say that there are a million motherhood stories, yet there’s really only one motherhood story. And being able to put a few of those stories together in a show is one of the best things I’ve ever been allowed to do. If you have a few minutes, I encourage you to take a look at the videos that we’ve just posted from the show. There are also videos from the other cities available to watch, but I can personally guarantee that the Austin ones are completely wonderful. For example:
There’s the hilarious Mary Jo Pehl talking about not having children in “Matryoshka Dolls.” (You fans of Mystery Science Theater 3000 may recognize Mary Jo.)
I really hope you’ll take the time to watch a few of the videos, and I’m not just saying that because it took me six hours to do all of those damn hyperlinks. (Why you hate me, technology?)
No, I’m saying you should watch these women because I truly feel that they’re telling stories that resonate long after the storyteller goes home. So Listen to Your Mother. I mean it. Listen.