GOING SOLO: Performing Your Own Words

GOING SOLO: Performing Your Own Words

Monday, July 25, 2011

As a writer, you may have the urge to say your own words out loud.  If you are brave, or just want to have fun, it can be illuminating to hear your own words reflected off an audience.

The panel will discuss one-person shows, stand-up comedy, and storytelling. (Book readings will be covered at a later program.)

The panel will discuss:

  • The courage needed
  • How to take the first step
  • How to get your work produced
  • Whether or not you need to have a director
  • How to polish your work, both in the privacy of your space and through input from test audiences
  • Some of the basics of both disciplines
  • Dos and don’ts
  • Rules, and how to break them creatively
  • Connecting with an audience
  • Expressing your truth in a way that captivates an audience
  • Dealing with multiple characters and narrators

…and more, as time allows


MARK W. TRAVIS is known internationally for the solo shows he has developed and directed over the past 15 years, including “Time Flies When You’re Alive,” “A Bronx Tale,” “Undressing New Jersey,” “Insomnia,” and many others. Mark has been credited in the LA Times with having created a “new theater genre.”

His book on film directing, “The Director’s Journey,” became an instant bestseller (L.A. Times); it was followed by “Directing Feature Films,” required reading by hundreds of film schools worldwide. “The Film Director’s Bag of Tricks” will be published in September 2011.

Since 1992 Mark has been sharing his techniques on writing, acting and directing worldwide. USA: The Directors Guild, American Film Institute, Pixar Animation Studios, UCLA Extension, and extensively in Japan, Germany, Poland, England, Brazil, France, Netherlands, Ukraine, Norway, and Ireland. www.markwtravis.com.

TERRIE SILVERMAN, MFA, is a writer/performer, artist-in-residence at Beyond Baroque Literary Arts, and founder of Creative Rites Workshops & Coaching.

She’s been teaching writing, storytelling, and developing the one-person show for over a decade. Additionally, she has directed highly praised solo shows. Her students have been featured on “This American Life,” NPR, the Huffington Post, popular local storytelling series, and have had their memoirs published. They include Susan Isaacs’ “Angry Conversations With God” and Andrea Askowitz’s “My Miserable, Lonely, Lesbian Pregnancy.”

Solo shows developed with Terrie include Ann Randolph’s “Squeezebox,” produced by Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft; Off-Broadway and Obie-award winner Heather Woodbury’s “Desmond Nanni Reese, A Stripper’s History Of The World.”

blog: Creativeriteing.blogspot.com

MARK MILLER started his performing life as a part of the San Francisco stand-up comedy scene, where he wrote and performed his own stand-up act, sharing the comedy club stages and often doing improvisational comedy with the likes of Dana Carvey and Robin Williams. Encouraged by his mentor, Jay Leno, to move to Los Angeles, Mark became a stand-up fixture at the world-famous Comedy Store and Improvisation nightclubs. TV soon beckoned, and Mark became the first 4.0 perfect-score-from-all-three-judges winner on “Star Search.” Several TV talk show appearances followed.

Mark then segued into a comedy writing career, with numerous sit-com and variety show writing/producing positions. He has also been a humor columnist for the Los Angeles Times Syndicate and currently writes a regular humor blog for The Huffington Post. In addition, Mark performs his original spoken-word humor essays at many theaters and clubs in the Los Angeles area, including Sit ‘N Spin, I Love A Good Story, Tasty Words, Pinata, and Story Salon.

LAURI FRASER is a writer, voice-over actress, storyteller, and creator/producer of “I Love A Good Story,” a monthly live show and podcast featuring true personal stories, spoken word and live original music. She has written and performed three one-person shows.  Her stories have been published in “The Story Salon Big Book of Stories,” “How to Make it in Hollywood,” Aromatherapy Magazine,” “Raw Magazine,” and “Real Authentic Women.”

Lauri has performed at most of the story salons around town. She is the voice of Jane Jetson and can be heard on cartoons (“Superman,” “Batman,” “I Am Weasel,” “101 Dalmatians,” “A Boy Named Q”), games (Play Station 2, “Rosey the Riveter”), animated features (“Rocky and Bullwinkle,” “Open Season 2,” “The Eye of the Future” (voice of EARTH), and commercials.

MICHAEL KEARNS The first openly gay actor in Hollywood, Kearns established himself as a mainstream actor in the seventies and eighties (“The Waltons,” “Murder She Wrote,” “Cheers,” “Body Double,” “Beverly Hills 90210,” “And The Band Played On”) while immersing in the worldwide theatre scene.

He has achieved international acclaim as a brilliant solo performer (“intimacies,” “more intimacies,” “Rock,” “attachments,” “Tell Tale Kisses,” “Make Love Not War,” “Once Upon a Time in South Africa”).

Kearns is the author of six theatre books published by Heinemann, including his most recent: “The Drama of AIDS, My Lasting Connections with Two Plays that Survived the Plague.”

HEATHER WOODBURY’s convention-bending solo and ensemble works combine the immediacy of performance art with a novel’s scope. Her new episodic drama “As the Globe Warms” was performed in front of a live audience and online over three seasons (34 episodes) in 2010-11.

Woodbury’s 10-hour, 100-character solo play, “What Ever: An American Odyssey,” toured from Chicago’s Steppenwolf to London’s Royal Festival Hall. Hailed by the NY Times as “a masterwork of the solo form,” it is published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux as a novel and was broadcast on public radio with host Ira Glass.

Her play “Tale of 2 Cities: An American Joyride” won a 2007 OBIE and is published by SemioText(e). She is a recipient of the Spalding Gray Award, Kennedy, NEA Awards for Playwriting, and C.O.L.A. (City of Los Angeles) fellowship, awarded to individual artists for sustained achievement in their discipline.

GARY YOUNG’s plays have been produced at the Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, the White House, the Smithsonian, and venues throughout the US and Europe. His one-person play, “ON HOLD: The MYTH of Male Maturity,” premiered in England and he will perform the show in LA, “soonish,” with a companion book, “The Immature Male Handbook.” His book, “Loss and Found: Surviving the Loss of a Partner,” co-written by his wife, Kathy, is used in colleges throughout the country.

Gary has been IWOSC’s Director of Professional Development, creating our programs for several years. He is the President of the Publishers Association of Los Angeles, the Executive Director of the Lifetime Achievement Foundation, and a Vice-Chair of the Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights.

His newest books, ”Slingshot,” “Glimmer the White Moonshine,” and “Social Networking for the Anti-Social,” will be coming out soon.