Friday, July 3, 2015

Don't Cry For Me...

Don't Cry For Me

Storytellers... the truth is, I'll never leave you.

Madonna as Evita Peron.
Don't cry for me Argentina ( storytelling), The truth is I never left you
All through my wild days, My mad existence
I kept my promise, Don't keep your distance...
I had to let it happen, I had to change, Couldn't stay all my life down at heel, Looking out of the window, Staying out of the sun...
- Evita  Andrew Lloyd Webber,  lyrics by Tim Rice

Not to get too dramatical but, hey... if I don't self-dramatize, who will? It is kinda a like brushing your teeth, right? It is hard for someone else to do it for you. 

Anywho, this July,  I will be resigning as ED of massmouth,inc.  My "new" job is really my old job as a professional freelance storyteller and educator. Plus office work in my husband's company. After we do some necessary fundraising and settle the nonprofit books and reports to finish out another season/ fiscal year I will  pass along the massmouth baton/brand to a small cadre of storytellers. They are H.R. Britton, Dan Dahari, Cheryl Hamilton, and Theresa Okokon. Come to the All Star Show at Club Passim where we will announce details. If you cannot make the show the news will be posted in a newsletter, twitter, FB and  

As we work on the transition, the world still turns, irregardless, as we liked to say in NY.  And I still need to work. By mid-August, I hope to be more free to be the active freelance artist, performer and educator I was before massmouth,inc. 

To be clear, I am not retiring and will continue to direct the StoriesLive® program and create events, programs and projects that promote the art of storytelling. Basically I will continue to do the work I love, the work I am good at and work people are happy to pay me for.  

So many people were so kind for years and I thank them all for their support and generous donations of time and money to the massmouth project. Thanks to all of you, we have raised up storytelling in Greater Boston and throughout the Commonwealth - which was our mission. We truly shared our common wealth of story and we did "... promote the timeless art of storytelling in the 21st century." 

Drama is fine but gratitude is truly called for. I have been privileged to be able to do this work because of the contributions and sacrifices of others.  Here is what I posted in my "official" letter to the massmouth,inc. lists this past week:

Thank you! It has been a pleasure and honor to play an integral role in the revitalization of storytelling in Greater Boston through my position as co-founder and executive director of massmouth,inc.

After so many story slams, events, and workshops, my head and heart are full of stories and it has been a source of deep joy and inspiration. Yet, after six years of full time commitment, I am stepping down from my position as unpaid executive director.

Fortunately, I am able to leave the day-to-day running of this organization in the hands of a small cadre of dedicated storytellers, including H.R. Britton, Dan Dahari, Cheryl Hamilton, and Theresa Okokon. The team is eager to see massmouth continue and we are currently working together to redistribute the behind-the-scenes operations of the organization. Knowing these individuals well and their deep commitment to advancing the art of storytelling, I believe massmouth is poised for future success. 

The new officers ask for your patience during this transition. They look forward to sharing next steps in the near future. At this date we can confirm that there will be a Season VII Slam series beginning as always in Sept/Oct, 2015 at Club Passim in Cambridge and Trident Book Store in Boston. Additional venues are also being considered. To extend your support or ask questions, email

Meanwhile, I am excited to refocus my time and energy on remunerative freelance storytelling, teaching, recording and writing. [See more here]. I intend to redouble my efforts on StoriesLive, the school based youth education program I designed. My dream is to see the StoriesLive curriculum implemented throughout the country. The change in my relationship to massmouth should give me more time to work towards that goal and a related dream;  seeing storytelling and oral language incorporated as a standard part classroom curriculum from K-8. 

The successes and achievements of massmouth,inc. have been possible through the support of so many people. We honor and celebrate the co-founders, volunteers, and benefactors, the audience members and, most importantly, all who shared their stories. I will be ever grateful and always remember fondly the whole crazy village that was required to "raise" this organization and the art of storytelling in Greater Boston and our Commonwealth. Please join me in acknowledging the generosity of all our host venues, who made space for our events and helped us build a place for storytelling.

Cannot say it enough...Thank you! 
Photos from massmouth 2009 - 2010 - the first season of story slams

And in the moving on department?  Below is what I know about my schedule for the summer of 2015. Here are some dates, a few details and some links: HubBub- June 20th Saturday, 12 noon in Copley Square Norah with Tony Toledo and Andrea Lovett. Save the Harbor/ Save the Bay- Norah, appearing as Mary Read, retired, cross-dressing 18th century pirate, near or, in Boston Harbor, on one of the beautiful islands. 10 -12 performances and workshops from July 2 - September 21st, 2015. READ BOSTON Storymobile: 3 shows per day at various sites around the city of Boston at 10am, 11:15am and 1:15 pm Venues TBA From Tue    July 13 to Thursday August 14th.  1794 Meeting House, July 19th, Sunday at 4 pm New Salem MA -  storytelling with Norah Dooley and friends; Brendyn Schneider and Jannelle Codianni. Phinehas Newton Library, Royalston, MA  July 20th, Monday at 10am in Royalston, MA -  stories from the flora and fauna of Royalston with Norah Dooley  All Star Show at Club Passim - July 20th The massmouth All Star Show features 5 minute long stories by winners from 6 years of story slams in Greater Boston. These All Stars are storytellers who were finalists or winners in Boston story slam finals (The Big Mouthoff) with a cameo by Norah. Norman Rockwell Museum - August 6th, Thursday 5:30pm  Stockbridge MA  features short stories on the themes "like family" and "in a different light". Featured tellers are Ben Cunningham, Tony Toledo and Norah Dooley will also lead a short workshop and open slam, as story slams head west from  Greater Boston. Roast and Toast & other fun! SATURDAY AUG 8th 2015 in Beverly MA •  Write to Tony Toledo for details... Fanueil Hall - starting in June a storytelling series on Tuesdays at 10 am Norah Performs on July 7th, August 11th and October 27th

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