Friday, April 28, 2017

Listen To Your Mother- The Final Show & Preparing For The Next Phase

I co-produce a storytelling show in Detroit. It is part of a national show called Listen To Your Mother.

For the last four years, I have worked with my friend Angela to bring stories about motherhood to a stage for a live audience. 
We call ourselves The Angelas and dude, if we were in Hollywood we might even start a production company with the same name. Who knows, even though we live in the Midwest, maybe we still will someday? 

We book a venue, secure funding, build relationships with sponsors, knock on doors, make calls and emails, we write, we tweet, we post, we take pictures, we sell tickets. AND we host auditions, edit, rehearse, coach, sound check, direct, support and enjoy a cast of writers.

Each year has been different in some way. There have been fires to put out, problems to solve and lessons to learn. Every story that has been told has been about an aspect of motherhood, but every story has been unique and original. Just like every storyteller that has taken the stage to be a part of the show.

Before this show my experience on stage included only a couple talent shows in elementary school. 
My very first time on a stage circa 1984. I choreographed my own dance to the song Fame by Irene Cara. And yup I brought my own prop, the stool from my bathroom. lol

I had no idea how much I would fall in love with being on stage as a middle age woman. But I did. 

My frist LTYM show.No bathroom stool,
but same awesome feeling as in 1984.

For a minute it made me a little sad because I wondered why in the world it took me so long to figure out how much I loved it. I mean, I couldn't help but think about all the time I could have been doing something that made me feel so alive and creative and fulfilled, and not feel a little bitter. Then I thought about what if I had never discovered it at all....

Right after the first show was done in the dressing room at our rad venue, St. Andrew's Hall. After my first time on stage, I discovered I had this inner bad ass rock star persona that was dying to come out. Who knew?!

Listen To Your Mother actually came into my life at just the right time. Four years ago I was a stay-at-home mother in my late thirties trying to figure out how to ease into the next phase of my life. I didn't want things to change. I'm not really someone who eases into anything--there's a lot of over analyzing, worrying, resisting, mourning, questioning, stomping around, grimacing. I don't like change unless I'm in charge of it, and my children growing up and time were things I couldn't control.

Working on this show, discovering a passion, meeting incredible men and women, building friendships, learning to say no and be okay with not making everyone happy, developing a pretty kick-ass skill set that I never knew I would have (um writing "live stage show producer" on a resume, what?!), connecting with creative people with so much talent it made my head explode and hearing stories from people that made my heart explode with compassion and wonder and inspiration and love....this show, this experience, has changed my life and me. 
One of my favorite pictures from the last four is from our first rehearsal ever. This show has shown me how important and powerful support and love and mothering each other can be. We REALLY are in this together.

As I prepare for the grand finale this Sunday and get ready for a new phase, a post Listen To Your Mother phase, I am of course feeling all reflective and resisit-y per usual. But I'm also feeling stronger and more sure of myself about what's next, even if I'm not sure what that is. I feel ready to take on time, embrace the ups and downs of aging and perimenopause (there are ups, right? Jesus I hope there is an up), feel all the feelings, know that I can be strong and vulnerable at the same time, be okay with needing Xanax sometimes,  make the most of time with my children who are growing up so fast and enjoy more of being in the right now/the moment. I am going to think about the women I've met and the stories I've heard and the lessons I've learned. I've listened to all the mothers and I know that whatever happens next, is going to make a great story someday.

Our first cast in 2014!

Cast number 2 circa 2015!
Cast number 3 last year!

This year's show is heavy and powerful. After the rehearsals I couldn't stop thinking about these women and what they've lived through. It is about loss, but also about surviving. It is about the beauty of moving forward with compassion and community and love. It is about finding light in the darkness and letting go and being okay. It feels like the perfect last show for this Listen To Your Mother journey and moving into whatever the next phase is.

One of our rehearsals for this year's show.
These women are incredible.

It's never to late to discover something that you love to do. 

This year's show is on Sunday, April 30, at 3 p.m. at St.Andrew's Hall in Detroit. To buy tickets for this year's show click here:

Check out these wrap up posts from LTYM shows in Detroit over the years:



  1. Finally making it to a show this year - my first and apparently last LTYM. Thanks for all you do - can't wait to see the production!