All stories aside: Jokes take center stage at storytelling event

The Brooklyn Paper
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Did you hear the one about the clairvoyant colon doctor?

Fifteen of the city’s best storytellers — who usually tell compelling personal narratives — are joining forces for a comedy showcase featuring short stand-up routines.

“I Like You, Maude,” a lottery-style improvisational storytelling series, is staging a special edition evening in which top-notch performers ditch the personal narrative and prepare three-minute comedic performances.

“There’s a gray area between comedy and storytelli­ng,” said organizer Kerri Doherty. “This gives us a chance to tell a one-liner or make a funny observation.”

Many performers also participate in the legendary The Moth StorySLAM series and have in the past told tales featuring an apocalyptic cockroach, a deadly Caesar salad and a colon doctor who could predict the future.

Past storytellers have included “Blue’s Clues” star-turned spoken word master Steve Burns — who won’t be telling punch lines at this comedic event.

Doherty said most participants are taking a first swing at stand-up in a comfortable setting because comedy routines come with a different, arguably more demanding, set of audience expectations.

“Comedy can be daunting,” Doherty said. “But we wanted to be brave — and try something different.”

I Like You, Maude at Tea Lounge [837 Union St. between Sixth and Seventh avenues in Park Slope, (718) 789–2762]. July 17, 7:30 pm. Free.

Reach reporter Natalie O'Neill at or by calling her at (718) 260-4505.

Updated 10:06 am, July 12, 2012: Updated for correction: Steve Burns will not be performing at the July 17 event.
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Reader Feedback

Kerri Doherty from Park Slope says:
Hi, this is Kerri, the host of I Like You, Maude. This article is actually mistaken -- Steve Burns will NOT be on the July 17th Storytellers Doing Stand-up show (he was a featured guest on a past show), but there will be 15 other fantastic storytellers on the show, and a proper stand-up comedian opening for us!
July 12, 2012, 8:31 am

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