Named the “gold standard” in storytelling by the Washington Post, voted one of the top 3 open mics in DC by the Washington City Paper, and nominated for the 2012 DC Mayor's Arts Awards for Innovation in the Arts, SpeakeasyDC has been entertaining audiences in Washington, DC since 1997. In that span of time, SpeakeasyDC has mastered the art of turning good stories into great performance. Typically, a SpeakeayDC show features six to ten storytellers performing heartfelt and humorous true stories on a common theme in a conversational style.
A big part of our mission is to get more people telling stories, so most of our shows have an open call for the general public to pitch a story on a given theme. We welcome everyone to give it a try knowing they will be supported through the process. All of the stories that end up on our stage are workshopped with a SpeakeasyDC story coach in advance, from one to several rehearsals. Note that your story must be autobiographical and have a complete narrative arc. See upcoming events | Pitch your story
We pride ourselves on our special shows that give voice to particular populations andperspectives --- such as Born This Way: Stories about Queer Culture in America, Bad Mommy Moments: A Storytelling Play-date for Moms; My So-Called Jewish Life, Crank & Groove: A Go Go Love Story, and Wetbacks, Aliens, & Towelheads: Stories from the First Generation -- and innovative collaborations and experimental formats -- such as SpeakeasyShorts Film Contest and SpeakeasyDC's Story Showdown: A Storytelling Game Show that parodies the Price is Right.
You can book a show that we have already created or hire us to customize a show that meets your goals. A customized show may include a cast of seasoned storytellers that we choose, a cast of members within your own community or company that we coach, or a combination of the two. For instance, we have remounted First Generation at Montgomery College and Born This Way at Reston Community Center. We have been commissioned to develop two shows for Patagonia on outdoor-related themes with a combination of SpeakeasyDC storytellers and members of the environmental activist community. The Peace Corps commissioned SpeakeasyDC to coach Returned Peace Corps Volunteers to perform stories for a 50th anniversary event; two events for synagogues around the themes of Purim and Passover; and we have been contracted by Washington Regional Area Grantmakers and Humanities Council of Washington to coach individuals they selected to present for an Annual Meeting and a special event.
SpeakeasyDC's signature style of storytelling focuses on helping you identify meaningful narrative events in your life and turning them into entertaining "performance-ready" stories. With seven years in the field, a unique curriculum, and seven talented teachers, SpeakeasyDC is a leader in teaching the art of contemporary autobiographical storytelling. We offer ongoing educational opportunities that accommodate different levels of experience, interest, and time contsraints including our comprehensive five-week Storytelling 101 course and our acclaimed one-day Storytelling Boot Camp. Both classes maintain a ration of 6:1 and allow for a significant amount of personal attention. Our teachers are experienced, knowledgeable, and compassionate and will do their best to meet the needs of each student. New classes are added regularly. Go to upcoming classes to what is currently scheduled and stay informed by joining our mailing list or following us on Facebook and Twitter.
Trainings & Consulting
SpeakeasyDC's trainers are experts in the art of storytelling. We have been invited to design and lead on-site storytelling trainings and presentations for companies and organizations including the Inter-American Development Bank, American University, Georgetown University, Peace Corps, Meyer Foundation, and Deloitte &Touche. We have also coached individuals identified by an organization to prepare them to present a story at an event. For instance, Washington Regional Area Grantmakers hired us to coach three of their grant recipients for their Annual Meeting; and the Humanities Council of Washington hired us to coach four people being honored at a special event. We can also be hired to curate and direct a show from scratch that relates to your brand and/or mission for a fundriaser, conference, or special event.
Youth & Community
SpeakeasyDC has designed and led programs for youth at the SEED School, DC FLY program, and the Dream Project and for patients at St. Elizabeths. We have led workshops for Young Nonproift Professionals Network, Nonprofit Rondtale, Stone Soup Films, Docs in Progress, and Feeding America, among others, and we have raised money for other non-profits such as Potomac Riverkeepers and the Rock Creek Conservancy.
Podcast and Video
We publish a free podcast called The Speakeasy Storycast and host video channels on Vimeo and YouTube. On these, you will find recordings of our live performances, promotional videos, and a handful of produced “radio-style” stories (not performed live).