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STORYTELLERS: April

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Phyllis Porché

Phyllis Porché was born and raised on the south side of Chicago. She teaches English composition at a small technical college and writes fiction (MFA from Columbia College in Chicago).
An avid listener of NPR’s The Moth Radio Hour, Phyllis mustered her nerve to compete in a Moth StorySLAM last year – and won! She went on to compete in the Moth Grand Slam, and has participated in other storytelling shows around Chicago.
Phyllis credits her parents for her love and reading and writing, and is regularly inspired by her muses: strong coffee, meditation, and milk chocolate Hershey’s Kisses.

Steve Glickman

Steve Glickman has been telling stories at weddings and funerals his whole life to wide critical acclaim. He is the co-host of the monthly open-mic storytelling show Do Not Submit at Uptown Underground in Chicago, and has performed at the Laugh Factory, the Moth, the Evanston Storytelling Festival, This Much Is True, Story Club, OUTspoken, and other shows in Chicago. 
Steve is a software engineer by day and a proud nerd. He loves classical music and can often be seen air-conducting whatever symphony or opera is playing on his iPod or in his head.  He lives in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago with his partner Mark and their imaginary dog Ruffles.

Marion Deal

Marion Deal is a published poet, recognized artist, and passionate student who attempts to alchemize the ordinary into the extraordinary through the power of art and science. When she’s not attempting to explain quantum physics to her cats — the only ones who will listen — she can be found acting in the Bristol Renaissance Faire, where she plays a mischievous pickpocket with a propensity for trouble, or working on her nonfiction book, a first-hand examination of the faults of the public education system and the solutions that must be implemented to save the spirit of learning. 

Diane Kastiel

Diane Kastiel is the host of First Person Live, and a writer and storyteller from Chicago. She’s a three-time Moth StorySLAM winner whose work has been featured on NPR’s Moth Radio Hour, its podcast, and at live events for NPR’s Chicago affiliate, WBEZ.
Diane has performed stories on stage at the Park West, Victory Gardens, Second City, Mayne Stage, Athenaeum, and Lifeline theaters in Chicago, and at legendary rock bars Martyr’s and Fitzgerald’s. She’s also told stories in more unconventional settings, including art galleries, bookstores, the basement of a tattoo parlor, the middle of the woods, and homeless shelters. 
Diane works as a freelancer writer specializing in the nonprofit sector. She’s also an alumna of The Second City Conservatory, the University of Chicago's Great Books program, and Northwestern University.

Don Hall

Don Hall is an events consultant, artistic mercenary, and pirate king. He also edits and contributes regularly to the digital magazine “Literate Ape."

 

In his 30-year career, Don has worn many hats - public school music teacher, beloved Moth StorySLAM host, off-Loop theatrical producer, and decade-long Director of Events for WBEZ and House Manager of NPR’s megahit show, “Wait Wait...Don’t Tell Me!” He’s also a former professional trumpet player and homeless busker. Each of his random gigs is a chapter in a truly strange novel written by a lunatic. Don currently lives above a bar in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago with his wife, the poet and musician Dana Jerman.

 

Sheri Reda

Sheri Reda is a writer, editor, and performer whose three Master’s degrees – in Modern Letters, Religions and the Arts, and Information Sciences – support her voracious appetite for creative endeavor. Sheri is also a certified Master Life-Cycle Celebrant whose personalized weddings, memorials and other ceremonies have been rated among the best in the United States. Her stories have energized programs at storytelling venues throughout Chicago, and her work with the experimental theatre company Neo-Futurists has fed her soul.

Kevin D'Ambrosio

Kevin D'Ambrosio is a motivational speaker, storyteller, and actor. Kevin has performed with the acclaimed Piven Theatre in Evanston and at the Ragdale Foundation, one of the largest interdisciplinary artists’ communities in the country.  He has told stories at venues around Chicago and is a Moth StorySLAM winner. Kevin also teaches self-expression through storytelling to detainees in Cook County Jail.

Kevin hails from what was once known as the tanning capital of the world: Peabody, MA. He moved to the midwest at the turn of century to pursue improv, then he realized he wasn't funny. Years later, he attended a live storytelling show and was blown away by the performers, yet swore he would never get on stage to tell a story of his own. At First Person Live, he tis living out his nightmare by telling a personal story on stage - now that's funny. 

Anne Abel

Anne Abel moved to Chicago from suburban Philadelphia in January 2016, for what she thought would be four months, with her husband Andy, a visiting professor at the University of Chicago. Anne has a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Tufts University, an MBA from the University of Chicago, and an MFA in creative non-fiction from The New School for Social Research. She was a columnist for Main Line Welcomat and has been published in the Philadelphia Daily News, Lilith, Jewish Exponent and Main Line Today. Anne recently jumped into the storytelling scene, performing in Chicago and the suburbs. She also discovered Bruce Springsteen late in life and is trying to make up for lost time.
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