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A Year of Yes: My live storytelling show, New York City’s Secrets and Lies, at CAVEAT on Monday, January 29th

My live storytelling show, New York City’s Secrets and Lies, is happening at 7:30pm on Monday, January 29th at CAVEAT, located at 21A Clinton Street, New York, New York 10002. $12 tickets are on sale now on the CAVEAT website: http://caveat.nyc/event/new-york-citys-secrets-and-lies/. I hope you can join us! Doors open at 7pm. Bar will be open throughout the show. Visit the Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/983548008463724/

Can you tell the difference between a secret and a lie? Five expert storytellers spin incredible tales about the secret pasts of NYC locations you walk by every day. All the stories are true except for one. If you can identify the lie, you’ll be in the running to win a pair of tickets to a secret NYC event.

Stories Include:
“Did you ever wonder what it would be like to live in the New York Public Library?”
“A starlet, a millionaire playboy, and a world-renowned architect take center stage during the trial of the century.”
“An entire building in NYC has been stolen? Yes. Twice, actually.”
“How spite, paranoia, and the quest to throw wild house parties led to the creation of one of NYC’s hottest, most secret nightclubs.”

Host: Christa Avampato has a deep and unabiding passion for New York City and the secrets it holds. She began her career managing Broadway shows and national theater tours, and now works with performing arts organizations and museums to help them use technology to grow their audiences. She’s been an invited speaker on the power of the imagination at SXSW, Games for Change, New York University, and Columbia University. Her writing has been featured in The Washington Post, Royal Media Partners magazines, PBS.org, HuffPost, Megyn Kelly TODAY, and Cheddar. Dedicated to helping young people find their own voices, she’s worked with 826national.org, Sesame Workshop, New York Public Library, University of Pennsylvania (her alma mater), and Cornell Tech. This fall her young adult fantasy novel was published by Possibilities Publishing Co. Christa earned her MBA at the Darden School at the University of Virginia. You will always find her sharing her never-ending curiosity on Twitter @christanycInstagram @christarosenyc, and her daily blog christaavampato.com.

STORYTELLERS: 

Allison Huntington Chase, CEO of Madame Morbid’s Trolley Tours in Brooklyn.  Allison grew up in Hartford, CT and has a degree in Screenplay Writing from the School of Visual Arts. As a child, her father created one of the world’s largest haunted houses, which was featured in New York TimesEntertainment Tonight, and Newsweek as “one of the best haunted houses in the country,” thus making her the 2nd generation of ghost tours.

 

Michelle Young is the founder of Untapped Cities, a web magazine and tour company based in New York City. She is a graduate of Harvard College in the History of Art and  Architecture and holds a master’s degree in urban planning from Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, where she is an Adjunct Professor of Architecture. She is also a graduate of the Juilliard School of Music, Pre-College Division. She is the author of Secret Brooklyn: An Unusual Guide, New York: Hidden Bars & Restaurants, and Broadway. Michelle appears regularly as a guest speaker in documentaries, on television, and at conferences on urban issues. Originally from New York, she has traveled to over forty countries and is always looking for the next adventure.

Sarah Laskow is a senior writer at Atlas Obscura, an online magazine that covers the world’s hidden wonders. She writes about cities, the relationships between people and nature (plants in particular), and obscure histories. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, NPR’s All Things Considered, and many other fine print and online publications.
Alex Neuhausen is an engineer, musician, and venue owner. He holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. He produces music which has been licensed for video games and television. His current project, “Strangers on the Internet,” has a forthcoming EP. He founded the legendary underground venue, Secret Loft, in a Brooklyn auto garage in 2013. Now in Manhattan, Secret Loft hosts a dozen events per month, spanning comedy, poetry, dance parties, live music, and circus and aerial dance shows. You can find a schedule of events (but not an address or phone number) at http://www.secretloftnyc.com, and you can see what you’re missing on Instagram @secretloftnyc.
Bridget Randolph is an NYC-based actor, writer and storyteller from small town Virginia. Bridget studied acting and performance with the Salon:Collective in London, UK before moving to New York; here she discovered the magical world of improv and storytelling thanks to the Magnet Theater (specifically, Rick Andrews and Adam Wade). Bridget has performed in Lady Sketch Show, the Everyone Is Sad show, and will be in Adam Wade’s Storytelling Series on January 6th. She is currently developing her first solo show. You can follow her on Twitter (@BridgetActs), and Instagram (@bridget.m.randolph), and find out about upcoming projects and shows at www.bridgetacts.com.
Carla Katz is Jersey born and bred storyteller and now lives in Hoboken. She debuted her solo show “Body Parts” at this year’s SOLOCOM 2017 at the Peoples Improv Theater. She has performed at numerous Moth StorySlams, at the Magnet Theatre, in “Adam Wade’s Storytelling Series”, and in front of her dog Finn.  Katz likes to get emotionally naked and she tells stories that expose the small dramas that make us laugh or cringe. By day, she is a labor union leader, lawyer, and political animal. By night, she gets naked and howls at the moon over Manhattan. Katz learned storytelling craft from fellow Hobokenite Adam Wade– 20-time Moth winner and
comic extraordinaire.

In the pause: Help me choose a format for a live show about the secrets of New York City

I need your help. I’m pitching the production of a live show in a venue on the lower east side about the secrets of New York City, the secrets that live below our streets, in plain sight, and over our heads. We’re talking wormholes, hidden places, secret passageways, and strange history. I need to choose a format for an engaging evening as a test show. If it gets accepted and is successful, it could turn into a monthly show.

I’ve listed some format ideas below. Which of these ideas appeals most to you, or do you have an idea for a completely different format for the show?

Thank you so much for your input!

1.) Battle of the Secrets – A set of storytellers and secret aficionados battle it out and the audience votes on who has the best secret of New York City.
2.) New York City’s Secret Liar’s Club – A set of storytellers and secret aficionados tell their favorite New York City secrets. All of them are true and one’s a lie. Or all of them are lies and one is true. The audience votes on which one is not like the others.
3.) Secret NYC Trivia Night – Similar to pub trivia, the audience gets the chance to test their secret New York City knowledge to win a fantastic prize of secrets.
4.) The Secret NYC Gameshow – A Family Feud, Price Is Right, or Jeopardy style gameshow that tests contestants’ knowledge of secret New York City.

In the pause: Help my discover the secrets hidden underground and overhead in New York City

I’m completely obsessed with the secrets of New York City. It’s haunted in the best possible ways. As I write Emerson Page’s second book, I’m learning that there is so much here she needs to discover. I need to explore these secrets first-hand, and I want you to go with me! Interested? I’m now amassing a list of tours and places that I’ll be poking around in the coming months. Here’s a sampling of what I’m finding:

  • Hidden places, often in plain sight. Wormholes, secret passageways, and underground art installations.
  • The strange and mysterious history hidden in the architecture that rises up dozens of stories high everywhere we go.
  • Secret ways to get up close to priceless treasures that are usually impossible to access.

This city literally breathes. It’s always whispering to us. I’m listening and getting it all down as best I can. I hope you’ll join me in this pursuit.

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