the living art of storytelling in Massachusetts

Mike Sweeney
  • Male
  • Somerville, MA
  • United States
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  • Marvin Novogrodski
  • D. Adriane Spunt
  • H.R. Britton
  • Mary Jo Maichack
  • Daniel Gewertz
  • Debbie Block
  • Norah Dooley
  • Doria Hughes

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What is your outside web or blog site URL ? Please post at your page - this helps connect you to the world looking for story!
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Are you a performer of story or listener, both, other? Tell us a bit about yourself...
story performer and writer
"So, what do you want to get out of storytelling?"

I've already gotten so much! What more could I ask for?

"How did you get started?"

By the most random of chances. As near as I can tell it, this started when I was a teenager. Through a show called "Alive From Off Center" that aired on PBS, I was exposed to two very different performance artists that I would appreciate and want to emulate: They were Eric Bogosian, who does character monologues that are hilarious but dark and uncompromising; and Spalding Gray, who did long, autobiographical monologues.

In August of 2008, I found out about an open-mike night at The Center for the Arts in Natick (TCAN), and thought it would be an ideal place to workshop a Bogosian-esque character monologue that was very confrontational, but not yet short enough or funny enough to satisfy the expectations of a comedy audience. On that particular summer night, the audience was uncomfortably small, and mostly women. There were barely enough people to make up a show. So, in the spirit of helping out, and not wasting my trip, I volunteered to tell a story I had been working on for several years as a written piece. I got halfway through it that night, and got encouraging feedback. I sought out some venues that were closer to home, and on my first night at the Lizard Lounge, I met Mike Cohen, and he invited me to Brother Blue's storytelling night.

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Mike Sweeney's Blog

The Onion Lampoons "This American Life"

This is great; a sly send-up of the star machine that got me into storytelling:,2188/

Posted on June 30, 2010 at 4:00pm — 1 Comment

Comment Wall (5 comments)

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At 2:25am on January 31, 2010, Kafunda Banks said…
At 4:00pm on January 13, 2010, Daniel Gewertz said…
Hi Mike. Great chattying with you, and a wonderful tale the other night. We should talk about the art of editing and shortening someday, in relation to your desire to re-route your tale for commercial and/or radio purposes. Maybe coffee in Somerville. -- Daniel
At 4:03pm on October 8, 2009, Norah Dooley said…
Why thanks MIke! Nice of you to say so.... I have a bunch of stories from that time that I want to work up.
At 3:54pm on October 8, 2009, Doria Hughes said…
Hi Mike, I want to see that photo, where is it?? I'm so glad that Olga liked "Bess", that was really fun the other night. I've got to make it to Blue's more often!
- Doria
At 9:11am on July 3, 2009, Norah Dooley said…
Hey Mike - Welcome to story world come and mouthoff some time!
Finding ways to create larger more comfortable audiences is my passion


Grand Prize for South Shore Grand Slam Story Slam generously donated by Nicolette Heavey and Stories In The Streets (A Maine Get Away)

Stories in the Streets in an outreach literacy program that focuses on families in at-risk areas and fosters community engagement in storytelling by: 1) Creating opportunities for public storytelling wherever families gather — a farmer’s market, laundromat, or food line; and, 2) Offering storytelling workshops that raise family engagement in literacy, cultural awareness and community understanding.  The program is currently active in Lawrence, Brockton and Randolph.


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What is a story slam? Get the FAQs! 9 Replies

Started by Norah Dooley in Uncategorized. Last reply by Tamara Safford Feb 4, 2014.

Press Clippings 2012-2013 - Links and as a Pdf

Started by Norah Dooley in Sample Title Jun 26, 2013.

Storytelling is front page news in Boston...12/22/12 2 Replies

Started by Norah Dooley in Sample Title. Last reply by Brendyn Schneider Dec 23, 2012.

Grand Slam Story Slam Fuller Craft Museum May 7th

The South Shore story Slams presents The GRAND SLAM STORY SLAM MAY 5TH @The Company Theater 6:30PM the winners of Doyles and SS Story Slam Season compete for Maine Getaway valued at  $1,000. Get your tickets before they are gone $25.00 in advance $20.00 members at door $30.00 non members 



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