Storytelling events have been sweeping the nation in recent years, thanks in part to radio shows like This American Life, events like The Moth, podcasts like Serial and essayists like David Sedaris. Experience an unforgettable night of enthralling, true stories at these Portland events:
Founded in 1997, national nonprofit The Moth has hosted more than 3,000 spellbinding live shows, and its award-winning podcast is routinely ranked in iTunes’ Top 20. Portland’s Holocene and The Secret Society both hold monthly Moth Story Slams, featuring five-minute stories on pre-announced themes like “Movies,” “Jokers” and “The Dark Side.” Feeling brave? Prepare your own story and submit your name at the event — you could be chosen to perform!
Back Fence PDX
“No lies. No notes. No memorization.” Those three simple rules guide the performances at Back Fence PDX, Portland’s flagship storytelling event. Expect an evening of polished stories from veteran comedians, actors and authors from Portland, New York, Los Angeles, and everywhere.
Bored by traditional storytelling events? Try “Russian Roulette,” which challenges performers to spin a giant wheel of prompts and craft five-minute true stories based on their results, or “Reel Stories,” which invites filmmakers to pair personal tales with their own movie and television clips — including outtakes and behind-the-scenes footage.
Hosting events everywhere from Amsterdam to Austin, Mortified invites adults to share their most embarrassing childhood relics — think diaries, poetry, photos, songs and home videos — in front of total strangers. Catch a bi-monthly show at the Alberta Rose Theatre, and be prepared to squirm!
Portland Story Theater
Local storytelling collective Portland Story Theater gathers several times yearly to perform true tales on a common theme. Events often revolve around a holiday (like “Luck of the Irish” in March, “Spellbound” in October and “Kiss & Tell” in February). The group’s “Armchair Adventurer” series presents historical events personally, sharing the heart-wrenching sagas of Nantucket whaling ships and doomed Antarctic expeditions.
Offered several times each year, Portland Story Theater’s “Art of the Personal Narrative” workshop teaches participants to craft 10-minute stories about experiences that radically changed their lives. The remarkable results are presented in an evening of live jazz and storytelling at the historic Alberta Abbey. Intrigued? The group’s stories are available for free on the Urban Tellers website and as weekly podcasts on iTunes.
The hearth fire. What better place to meet with family and friends as the clock embraces the winter nights? Humankind has met here since the beginning, telling stories and myths to dream of, stiffening our resolve, and melting our hearts. Old tales are heard, cautioning everyone to better behavior, and new stories are shared, inspiring…
Literary Arts and The Moth are bringing a new lineup of storytellers to Portland. Each Moth Mainstage show features five tellers who have developed their true stories with help from The Moth’s directors. The Moth features true stories, told live and without notes. The Moth celebrates the ability of stories to honor both the diversity…
Join Write Around Portland to celebrate all the writers published in the winter anthology. Hear stories and poetry by writers rarely heard in society — people experiencing homelessness, people living on low incomes, burn and wound survivors, and more. Refreshments provided.
The Moth StorySLAM is an open-mic storytelling competition in which anyone can share a true, personal, 5-minute story on the night's theme. Sign up for a chance to tell a story or sit back and enjoy the show. The show's theme is… HOME: Prepare a five-minute story about where the heart is. Where you're from……
Join host Rebecca Sheir and composer Eric Shimelonis, plus a talented cast of actors, as they bring two Circle Round stories to life on-stage in Portland! This event features a live recording of one of the tales, allowing you to be a part of the Circle Round magic. Meet us in the lobby after the…
Portland has a well-established network of venues and theater companies and an increasingly dynamic and diverse small theater scene.
There's always something funny happening in Portland. From stand-up comedy to improv or even comedy classes Portland has any kind of comedy you may be looking for. Portland boasts many stages to bring you fresh, up-and-coming, and touring comedians.
This book-friendly city is home to an annual book festival and the world's largest independent bookstore.
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