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The Moth StorySLAM, NYC's hottest literary ticket, hits Detroit 10.1.09

September 3, 2009

Moth Radio Hour debuts on WDET 9.4 & 9.5

Detroit - September 1, 2009 - Having spurred a revival in oral storytelling in New York City, The Moth is bringing the world's oldest art form to Detroit for monthly, open-mic StorySLAMS, the first Thursday evening of each month, premiering October 1st at Cliff Bells. Hailed as "New York's hottest and hippest literary ticket" by The Wall Street Journal, the Detroit Moth StorySLAMs are sponsored by WDET, Detroit Public Radio. The Moth is an acclaimed non-profit organization dedicated to the art of storytelling.

The StorySLAMS will be held on the first Thursday of each month at Cliff Bells. Each show has a theme. The themes for 2009 are: October 1 - FIRSTS, November 5 - BLUNDERS, December 3 - CARS. Wanna-be storytellers should prepare a five-minute, true story on the posted theme. Each Moth StorySLAM evening will feature ten individuals, picked randomly from a hat. All Moth stories are based on true-life experiences, and are told on stage, without notes, scripts or cheat sheets. After each story, three teams of judges, chosen from the audience, give a score. The teller with the highest score goes on to compete in the Detroit GrandSLAM alongside nine other local slam winners.

The Detroit Moth StorySLAM is the newest addition to the already successful StorySLAM series in New York (now held once a week to standing room only crowds) and Los Angeles (now held twice a month to sold out crowds). The first Detroit Moth StorySLAM will be hosted by Dan Kennedy, one of the new Moth Radio Hour hosts and the author of the highly acclaimed ROCK ON. For detailed guidelines on how to participate at a MothSLAM, either as a storytelling contestant or a judge please go to www.themoth.org/storyslams_participate.

Since The Moth's inception in 1997, countless people have listened to more than 3,000 stories told by people from all walks of life - from Moby, Sam Shepard, Ethan Hawke, and Lili Taylor to a fire fighter, pickpocket, and a hot dog-eating champion. Interest in The Moth's unique concept continues to grow, with sold-out crowds for every event in New York and Los Angeles. Because of this significant surge and demand for storytelling, The Moth plans to continue expansion of its shows nationally.

"With the continuing rise of technology and recent uncertainty of our economic climate, we've found people across the country are clamoring to make more meaningful connections. There is nothing more raw, primal, and universal than a really good story," said Lea Thau, The Moth executive and creative director. "We're thrilled to have the opportunity to extend our mission to the Detroit community."

Tickets for the Detroit StorySLAMs at Cliff Bells, on the first Thursday of each month, are just $5 at the door. Doors open at 7:00, stories start at 7:30, and audiences are encouraged to arrive at the venue early, as every one of The Moth¹s Mainstage shows has sold out. The Moth StorySLAMs are supported by WDET.

The Moth StorySLAMS are just one part of The Moth's efforts to spur interest and participation in authentic storytelling. The Moth recently teamed with PRX, the Public Radio Exchange, to produce the Moth Radio Hour. This limited-run radio series features storytellers recorded at Moth events and The Moth Radio Hour will air on WDET in the weeks leading up to the StorySLAM's Detroit debut. The Moth Radio Hour will air on WDET, Fridays at 7pm and Saturdays at 4pm, starting September 4th and 5th. The series will be rebroadcast the week of the StorySLAM debut (9.28-10.2), Monday - Friday at 7PM.

About WDET
WDET 101.9FM is Wayne State University's public radio station and is Southeast Michigan's station for in-depth news, conversation and music. WDET serves over 165,000 individuals every week and is one of Detroit's few remaining media outlets whose primary mission is to serve the region through locally focused news and cultural programming. WDET's daily talk show, Detroit Today, has established a position among the state's political, economic and cultural leaders as a credible, trusted venue for serious, considered conversations on the region's most pressing concerns. In addition to award-winning local news service, WDET is also the National Public Radio (NPR) member station for metropolitan Detroit.

WDET is also furthering its position as a leading public radio station by partnering with WNYC, New York Public Radio and Public Radio International (PRI) in the development of The Takeaway, the first new public radio morning show in over 25 years. The Takeaway is designed to welcome new audiences into public radio through a contemporary news format and an interactive, multi-platform strategy. WDET continues its long tradition of serving the audience through an expanded and updated approach to community engagement. WDET's community programming strategy, as exemplified by the DPS Robert Bobb Town Hall, the Health Care Reform Town Hall and the series Facing the Mortgage Crisis: Home is More Than Our House series. This programming strategy is designed to turn the audience into the programming and bring authentic, under heard voices to the region's airwaves.

About the Host
Dan Kennedy is the author of "Loser Goes First: My Thirty Something Years of Dumb Luck and Minor Humiliation" and "Rock On: An Office Power Ballad." He's a longstanding contributor at McSweeneys.net. His essays also appear regularly in GQ Magazine, and in several anthologies including the Los Angeles Times Bestseller "Created in Darkness by Troubled Americans: The Best of McSweeney's Humor Category." Of his latest book, Rock On, The New York Times Book Review says, "Hilariously spot on. Neither the music business or Mr. Kennedy will ever be the same."

About The Moth
The Moth was founded in 1997 by poet and novelist George Dawes Green, who wanted to recreate in New York the feeling of sultry summer evenings on his native St. Simon's Island, Georgia, when moths would attract to the light on the porch where he and his small circle of friends would gather to spin spellbinding tales. The first Moth event was held in George¹s East Village living room and the story events quickly spread to larger venues throughout Manhattan. People from all walks tell real stories from their lives with no notes and every show in The Moth's history has sold out - most within 48 hours. In 2006-2007, The Moth produced a successful ten city national tour. In 2008, The Moth podcast was launched and spent one month at number one on iTunes. Today, The Moth conducts six ongoing programs - The Moth Mainstage, open-mic Moth StorySLAMs, MothSHOP Community Program (which brings storytelling workshops free of charge to underserved populations), The Moth on the Road, MothSHOP Corporate, and the annual Moth Ball - and has brought more than 3,000 live stories to millions of listeners the world over.

For more information about The Moth, The Moth Radio Hour, or to sign up to get a free story weekly via the Moth Podcast, named "#2 new podcast of the year" by iTunes in 2008, visit www.themoth.org.

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