Last night, from the Brooklyn Academy of Music Cinema 3, I watched the taping of This American Life, episode 379, Return from the Scene of the Crime. Now, I can guarantee that I would probably have gotten a kick out of any type of This American Life live show (this might not be entirely true...there was a stretch during the spring and summer of 2007 when I found all the new radio episodes produced to be kind of blah). However, I really do want to recommend this live show to you. Whether you listen to it on the radio when it airs next weekend (May 2nd) or see the encore screening in movie theaters on May 7th, I think you might also enjoy it too.
I think the storytelling in these stories is a nice balance of funny and that other quality that makes you stop feeling like you are listening to someone read a story to you in a movie theater, and instead makes your brain slip deeper into the realm of storytelling like what does it feel like to prepare to tell the story of your mother's death in front of thousands, and to know that you are going to lose it and cry, but to do it anyway?
You may have read my review of the Moth live storytelling last month, and I think last night's show is a good example of the type of storytelling I prefer. It felt less like the tellers were trying to impress the audience, and more like they were just trying to put some sense to the confusing and upsetting stuff that had happened to them, and to try to find some meaning in it that might be relate-able or useful to someone else. So in the end, I left feeling a little bit different then when I walked in, and to me, that is always a good outcome.