Gotham Storytelling Festival

Summary Info Festival StoryFestival EventsOther SourcesPractical Info

Country and Region United StatesNew York
Type of Festival Literary
Location of Festival New York, New York, USA
Festival Contact Information

Horse Trade Theatre Group
85 E. 4th Street
New York, New York, 10003 USA
Phone: +01 212-777-6088

Festival Description

Folk music had the 60s in NYC, punk and performance art owned the 70s and 80s, and improv and alternative comedy ruled the 90s and 00s. Today… it’s live storytelling. Dozens of story shows take place at big and small theaters around the city, with new ones popping up every month. Horse Trade Theater Group (Heidi Grumelot, Artistic Director, Erez Ziv, Managing Director) is proud to present the First Annual Gotham Storytelling Festival in October 2012; collecting some of the best shows curated and produced by Horse Trade Artistic Director Heidi Grumelot and resident hosts Peter Aguero, Seth Lind and Adam Wade.

Festival Dates November 1 - 4, 2012
Festival Links

Festival Story:

HORSE TRADE THEATER GROUP is a self-sustaining theater development group; with a focus on new work that has produced a massive quantity of stimulating downtown theater. Horse Trade’s Resident Artist Program offers a home to a select group of Independent theater artists, pooling together a great deal of talent and energy. It is also the home of FRIGID New York – the first and only festival of its kind in New York City. In 2011 Horse Trade received the New York Innovative Theatre Ellen Stewart Stewardship Award for demonstrating a significant contribution to the Off-Off-Broadway community through service, support and leadership.


Festival Events:

Programming 2012:
  • The Liar Show
    Created & Hosted by Andy Christie
    Thursday, November 1 @ 7pm
    • Call it an unreality show. Since the summer of 2006, The Liar Show has taken the art of deception to theaters, cabarets and cultural centers around the U.S. and Canada and was called “A Winner” (The Scotsman) and received 4 Stars during a month-long run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Liar has featured New Yorker Magazine contributor Andy Borowitz, Mike Daisey, called “The master storyteller” by the NY Times, and former Bill Clinton speechwriter, Mark Katz in addition to Comedy Central personalities, film directors, lapsed Mormons with a bone to pick with the Almighty, and even an NYPD gang squad detective. At each show, four performers tell short personal stories, but listen carefully, because one of these people is making it all up. Interrogate the cast and expose the Liar to win our unbelievable T-shirt. But as The Washington Post wrote of our show: “Prizes mean nothing compared with the sweet victory of being recognized as the savviest people in the room.”
  • The Adam Wade Originally From New Hampshire Show
    Starring Moth StorySLAM winner Adam Wade
    Thursday, November 1 @ 9pm
    • A GREATEST HITS ‘SHOW OF SHOWS’ from the monthly The Adam Wade From New Hampshire Show, which is headed into its fourth year at the UNDER St. Marks. The show stars 18 time Moth StorySLAM winner, Adam Wade. Adam tells several stories that range from his youth growing up in NH to his post college years in New York City. Adam’s stories are accompanied by home movies and music. This show has received rave reviews from the New York Times and Time Out New York Magazine where it’s a ‘Critic’s Pick’.
  • The Soundtrack Series – Sleepover!
    Created & Hosted by Dana Rossi
    Thursday, November 1 @ 10:30pm
    • The Soundtrack Series is a monthly dose of stories fueled by songs that has been featured in the New York Times, BUST, NY1, “Above and Beyond” in the New Yorker, a Critic’s Pick in Time Out New York, listed by Gothamist as a Gothamlist Event of the week, and included among the “Best Events and Things to Do in NYC” by CBS News New York. Five guest storytellers, Nat Cassidy (Songs of Love: A Theatrical Mixtape), Amanda Duarte (No Denying Love), David Crabb (Bad Kid, Ask Me Stories), and Bridget O’Neill (The Moth) get on the mic to tell the hilarious or heart wrenching stories and memories they forever associate with a song from their past. There’s the song, the story behind the song, and the story inspired by the song. We’re the third one.
  • Real Characters
    Friday, November 2 @ 7pm
    • Andy Ross’s humor series Real Characters mixes together New York’s best storytellers, comedy writers, and memoirists. Past performers have appeared on The Moth, This American Life, 30 Rock, and Saturday Night Live. Past writers have contributed to The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, The Onion, The Simpsons, and The Colbert Report.
  • THow I Learned
    Friday, November 2 @ 9pm
    • Blaise Allysen Kearsley’s How I Learned series features writers, storytellers, comedians, bloggers, and other raconteurs holding forth on lessons learned, unlearned, relearned, or in progress. Called “hip” and “energetic,” and named one of the best shows of its kind by Time Out New York,
  • Bare.
    Created & Hosted by Peter Aguero
    Friday, November 2 @ 10:30pm
    • Raw stories paired with raw burlesque. Curated and hosted by Peter Aguero (The Moth, The BTK Band), Bare. will rip the heart out of your chest, place it lovingly back in, and proceed to do it all over again.
  • Workshop: Picking Apart Adam’s Story
    Saturday, November 3 @ 1pm $25
    • In this workshop, learn the basic elements of first person storytelling from New York’s Adam Wade, an 18-time Moth StorySlam winner and two-time Moth Grand Slam champion. The workshop will follow a class format in which each attendee will have the opportunity to share a brief story and receive feedback from Adam, discovering how to take a crowd by surprise and make them care, how to be sincere and vulnerable on stage, and how to communicate the real meaning behind your experience.
  • Workshop: Discovering ‘The Moment’
    Saturday, November 3 @ 3pm $25
    • Learn to discover ‘the moment’ that is your story and build around it. Peter Aguero, multi- grand slam winning storytelling artist will work with you in a small group on storytelling techniques.
  • Story Collider
    Created & Hosted by Erin Barker and Ben Lillie
    Saturday, November 3 @ 7pm
    • From finding awe in Hubble images to visiting the doctor, science is everywhere in our lives. Whether we wear a white lab coat or haven’t seen a test tube since eighth grade, science affects and changes us. We all have a story about science, and at The Story Collider, we want to hear those stories.
  • TOLD 4th Anniversary Show
    Hosted by Seth Lind
    Saturday, November 3 @ 9pm
    • TOLD is a monthly storytelling show hosted by Seth Lind (This American Life). Each month New York’s best performers take the stage to tell true stories related to a central theme. A special guest provides interludes to glue the evening together into a collective experience.
  • And I Am Not Lying
    With Jeff Simmermon, Brad Lawrence, & Cyndi Freeman
    Saturday, November 2 @ 10:30pm
    • We’re cock-rocking the NPR crowd with the best underground comedy, storytelling, burlesque and sideshow acts. This whole thing (and all of everything) is about getting together and getting EXCITED – just turn your phones off and shout it out loud.
  • Storytelling Panel Discussion
    Hosted by Seth Lind
    Sunday, November 4 @3pm
    • Top NYC storytellers breakdown their craft in a discussion of storytelling forms, hosted by Seth Lind from TOLD and This American Life.
  • Long Form Storytelling – Martin Dockery & Ophira Eisenberg Double Bill
    Sunday, November 4 @ 5pm
  • The Maize Maze of Ozura Written & Performed by Martin Dockery
    • Setting off to Europe for his family’s first-ever large-scale reunion, Dockery instead finds himself mistakenly lost and alone on a farm in Hungary at the largest psy-trance festival in the world. In this brand new comedy about family, thoroughly thwarted expectations, and having no tent in the rain, Dockery takes us on an absurd odyssey as he soberly searches for his cousin amidst 10,000 inebriated revelers.
  • Screw Everyone: Sleeping My Way To Monogomy Written & Performed by Ophira Eisenberg
    • Storyteller and comic Ophira Eisenberg performs 30 minutes of the best stories from her upcoming book, conveniently by the same title.
  • Oh, Hey Guys! Storytelling Open Mic
    Hosted by John Flynn
    Sunday, November 4 @ 7pm
    • Did you ever have a story, but not have anyone to tell it to? Well, suffer no more because John Flynn is hosting an open mic storytelling show! John will pick four names from a bucket. If you are chosen, you get eight minutes to tell any story you want. No theme, just a time limit. (Seriously, guys, we love you, but we will cut you off!) It is going to be a lot of fun, probably revealing, and free of judgment. (Unless you want John to comment on your outfit, which he will do free of charge.)
  • The BTK Band
    Sunday, November 4 @ 9pm
    • The BTK Band is NYC’s hardest-drinking improvised storytelling rock band. Raconteurs regale the audience with true stories from their lives while music and lyrics are improvised to turn their stories into songs. As if Tom Waits and The Moth delivered a baby from the gaping maw of Chaos.


Other Sources:

Want more? Click on a color — travel and explore.  

KadmusArts on Facebook:
  • Like KadmusArts on Facebook — we are your gateway to interact with the global community of festival fans, artist and organizers. Please share your comments and experiences in regard to this festival at


Practical Info:

  • UNDER St. Marks
    • 94 St. Marks Place
      New York, NY
Tickets 2012:
  • Prices for performances
    • $15/$12 students & seniors
  • Price for workshops
    • $25.
  • Buy
    • Online at
    • Phone Smarttix at +01 212-868-4444


Do you have an update or more information about this festival? Email us at
Start or join a conversation about this festival in the Forum.