Announcing Tennessean’s Nashville Storytellers Project 2022 season

·4 min read
Dr. Lakisha Simmons, the founder of The Period Project, tells her story at Nashville Storytellers held at Green Door Gourmet on Dec. 3, 2018.
Dr. Lakisha Simmons, the founder of The Period Project, tells her story at Nashville Storytellers held at Green Door Gourmet on Dec. 3, 2018.

The Tennessean will host a series of shows featuring remarkable, true, and personal stories told by people who live and work in Nashville and the Middle Tennessee region.

Editors and reporters will curate quarterly shows, coaching 20 people from the community to develop entertaining, compelling stories reflecting on the themes of “Growing Up," “Neighbors,” “Food and Family,” and “Holidays.”

Tickets are on sale now at https://www.storytellersproject.com/all-events/ and the newsroom is seeking pitches at https://www.storytellersproject.com/tell/.

“We are so excited to pass the mic in communities across America, inviting everyday people to tell their own stories in front of their neighbors,” said Megan Finnerty, founder and director of the Storytellers Project, part of the USA TODAY Network.

“When people feel empowered to tell their stories and others feel excited about listening, a community changes,” she said. “People feel closer to each other. They feel more accepting of those unlike themselves. They feel more connected to their city and the people in it.”

The Tennessean began hosting Storytellers shows in 2016. Since then, more than 80 Middle Tennessee residents from civil rights leaders, mental health advocates and chefs to parents, veterans and animal enthusiasts have shared their stories on stage.

The Storytellers Project originally launched in 2011 at The Arizona Republic in Phoenix, and nationally it has helped more than 6,000 people tell brief, personal stories on stages in front of more than 60,000 people. During the pandemic, the shows were aired online, reaching millions since March 2020. This coming year, the Storytellers Project, it will be part of The Tennessean and 16 other USA TODAY Network newsrooms.

"We are delighted to host Storytellers again here in Nashville, providing a series of personal stories in such a magnificent venue — The Roots Theater at the National Museum of African American Music downtown," said Maria De Varenne, executive editor of The Tennessean.

The Tennessean's “Growing Up” show will kick off the series on April 12 in at the National Museum of African American Music’s Roots Theater. The museum highlights the often overlooked history and legacy of African American music and acknowledges its influence on much of American culture and in Nashville, a city most widely known for country music.

Like the impact of NMAAM, the 2022 Nashville Storytellers show and team will highlight many voices from those who aren't traditionally heard despite their powerful stories and experiences in an ever-changing and expanding regional community.

Tickets will be sold based on an income-conscious pricing system at $8 or $12. Depending on income, purchasers can choose the price they can afford at https://www.storytellersproject.com/all-events/.

Storyteller hopefuls can apply to tell a story on stage at https://www.storytellersproject.com/tell/.

The Storytellers series is returning to 11 cities, from Rochester, New York, and Des Moines, Iowa, to Southwest Florida and coming to six new cities. New markets include:

  • Austin, Texas

  • Columbus, Ohio

  • Palm Beach, Florida

  • Wilmington, Delaware

  • Wilmington, North Carolina

  • Worcester, Massachusetts

The 2022 Season in Nashville

April 12: Growing Up — You’ll feel energized, inspired, and maybe a bit nostalgic as we share stories about growth.

June 7: Neighbors — You’ll feel heartened, uplifted, and more connected to the world and people around you as we share stories from the neighborhood.

Aug. 16: Food and Family — You’ll feel full of warmth, hopeful, and a wee bit sentimental as we share stories about food and our family traditions.

Nov. 15: Holidays — You’ll feel comforted and ready for loved ones, presents, and the lights of the season as we share stories about the holidays.

Become a Storyteller

We are looking for storytellers from all backgrounds who are willing to share their hearts, and jokes, with their neighbors. Tellers work with storytelling coaches to shape their true, first-person story around the theme of the night. Each story is seven to 10 minutes long and tellers receive between three and five hours of training to develop their stories.

Tellers begin working with the project coaches about two months before the event, but you can apply now as tellers will be selected in the coming weeks.

Apply at https://www.storytellersproject.com/tell/.

Tickets

Tickets are now on sale for all 2022 shows. Purchase season tickets or individual shows. Seats typically sell out quickly and far in advance. To reserve yours today, visit https://www.storytellersproject.com/all-events/.

This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: The Tennessean’s 2022 Nashville Storytellers Live Show schedule

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