Friendly and professional staff. Their coaches and shows are great. I would recommend the Story District to anyone!
Story District is an inclusive, equitable, thought-provoking capacity-, confidence- and connection-building experience posing as a fun collection of stories.
I participated as a storyteller with Story district in 2019 and it was so awesome! I learned so much about how to tell a story effectively and bonded so much with my fellow storytellers!
I started attending the shows several years ago with my daughter, in college at the time, when they were using the Temple on U St. Have brought many folks into the experience & have volunteered for a while. This is an experience that shows that we are so much more alike than we are different. It is inclusive of all ages, races, experiences and a true gift to the DC region, especially now. The shows, the audience & the volunteers all are exhibiting the truth - that we are much more alike than different.
This organization cares about highlighting the humanity of our collective stories. They help guide people to having their voices heard. And their shows are always impeccably produced & run. So much fun!
A treasure in DC! One of the best and most entertaining ways to connect and stay connected to others.
I saw one of Story District's Tuesday evening shows in 2014 and I was hooked. I signed up for their "storytelling 101" class and had a ball. Last year, I was lucky to partner with them on a fundraising show with the nonprofit I work for in Montgomery County, MD. We had never done anything like that before, but it was a huge success and is now our signature fundraising event. Our bilingual director, Stephanie Garibaldi, was incredible and really went the extra mile working with the cast. This year, our show had to go virtual because of the Covid-19 pandemic, but it turned out to be even better than last year's show. Story District has been wonderful to work with, and I look forward to partnering with them on more shows for many years to come!
Story District taught me that everyone (even an ordinary guy like me) has a story to tell. Their collective knowledge and expertise afforded me several one of a kind coaching experiences and the ability to tell "my story, my truth". They even provided various platforms and unique opportunities for me to do so. Like so many others; I went from being an audience member at a live show, to viewing pre-recorded performances online at home to becoming a grateful storyteller. Story District changed my life!!!!
The people at Story District have been nothing but kind and grateful towards me and everyone else that has worked with them. They are patient and truly care about who they are working with and will truly nurture them. One of the best!
I love Story District. I attended a show 10 years ago and was hooked. I took their storytelling class, I told stories on stage, I volunteered for them. Very inclusive, creative, fun, heart warming.
Story District is a nonprofit organization that brings people together through the art of true story storytelling. The storytellers at Story District break down barriers and biases through their personal stories. And from there, listeners are enlighted, educated, and inspired. I was introduced to Story District when it was called SpeakEasyDC and I eventually took the Storytelliner 101 course and told a few of my stories on stage. It is an amazing organization that brings people together and it is exactly the kind of organization our community and our country need right now.
Story District is the standard in DC for the best story telling shows. I'd known about them for years and had seen a couple of their shows at the Black Cat. They're curated in such a way that every show promised something different and surprising. Funny and touching. This past year, I was lucky enough to perform in one of their shows and from the performer's perspective it was a great experience. The staff are excellent story coaches and they know how to put a show together and do it all will giving diverse members of the community the opportunity to tell their stories. An irreplaceable part of DC culture.
This group changed my life by providing a safe, creative space to tell my story and be my authentic self. It also opened my eyes to my community and makes me feel part of something.
I am a doctor. I have an NGO name: - "Uttara Unnayon Songstha", Dighapatia, Natore, Bangladesh. We have been providing free medical care to ensure the future of poor, sick, orphaned, helpless, dying, underprivileged, and old people in the society, with good reputation for 6 years. In Bangladesh, where helpless, poor sick people are conducting free medical care camps.
There is no source of income for this organization, I manage to provide full medical care in my own sense. I want to provide free treatment to the poor, sick, orphan, helpless, dying, underprivileged, and old people in the society. But with sadness it is said that I have no money to help this helpless poor people in my hand.
I am requesting various organizations or individuals, "Uttara Unnayon Songstha", you need help with your help. You will be benefited greatly if you extend your support to a small amount. The poor, sick, orphan, helpless, dying, infant, and inferior paths of children and old people in Chalanbail area of Natore's Singra Upazila.
To contact me:
E-mail: - firstname.lastname@example.org
Facbook ID: - Uttara Unnayon Songstha
Skype: - faruque.khan98
Phone: - +880 1716 830 527
Bank Address: -
BRAK BANK, NATORE, BANGLADESH.
SWIFT: - BRAKBDDH
Account - 4501203275328001
I enrolled in the Speakeasy Storytelling 101 class because I wanted to learn how to better tell my story. Stephanie and Kevin did an amazing job of coaching our class of 12 to storytelling fame! The time they spent with each of us offering feedback and recommendations to continually improve our stories was incredibly valuable and in the end, I was able to go on stage and tell my story to a packed house. I now understand the true art of storytelling and am a better storyteller thanks to this class. I would recommend this to anyone who desires to improve their presentation and storytelling skills.
Speakeasy DC was contracted by the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies to design and deliver a four hour session for 50 state arts agency arts education managers as part of the 2012 Professional Development Institute (PDI).
The session goals were: 1. gain an understanding of story structure and the qualities of a good story, 2. share stories with one another and find potential “story seeds”, and 3. observe the coaching and story development process.
The first two hour session included several activities where managers built on and developed their skills in understanding effective narrative storytelling and how it can be used as a tool to communicate the value of arts education.
A one hour session with four individual managers followed. During the one hour session, four randomly selected arts education managers worked one on one with two Speakeasy DC teaching artists to fine tune their stories to present to the full group the following day.
The session concluded the following day with an hour of storytelling. Each of the four selected managers were asked to tell their refined stories to the group. After each manager presented their story, the teaching artists and managers spoke about the process they went through to refine their storytelling techniques.
The Speakeasy DC session at the PDI was very well received by many of the arts education managers. The participants noted the Speakeasy DC session as a hi-light of the PDI, stating that the teaching artists were very skillful, a pleasure to work with, and had high energy; that the session was not only a creative activity, but meaningful; and that the skills the managers learned in the session were easily transferable to other areas of their work.
Amy at Speakeasy DC was a pleasure to work with. She listened to our needs and thoughts and developed a very thoughtful session that was appreciated by the arts education managers.
Nonprofit NoVA hosted an event for nonprofit CEOs and Executive Directors and Amy Saidman was a fantastic speaker on this topic. Often, nonprofit leaders need to tell their own story and their organization's story in a short period of time but in a very compelling way. Amy broke down the parts of a story and used a great sample story from our audience. These busy CEOs were very engaged in the discussion and were eager to learn more after the event. Amy did a great job of putting structure to something that our members have to do every day, and breathing new life into something that can get redundant for those who have been at their jobs for many years. Thanks to Amy and SpeakeasyDC for a great event! We look forward to working together in the future!
SpeakeasyDC recently created and performed at our university for a group of approximately 60 first-year students. Amy, the Executive Director, worked with our programming staff to ensure the program would connect directly to the outcomes of the other Welcome Week programming happening around this evening. As clients, we felt our feedback and desires were considered and could see these play out in the event itself. The storytellers the group brought told engaging, funny and poignant stories and spurred conversation from the students on being a new resident in the District. Every student thoroughly enjoyed the event and a few even got up and told their own story!
SpeakeasyDC coached me by phone to tell a story for one of the Peace Corps' 50th anniversary events. Amy did an amazing job of pinpointing key entry points for my story, key elements that brought out my motivation for telling the story, and appropriate opportunities for humor. SpeakeasyDC was also clear about the format and expectations for the event itself. It put me at easy and gave me confidence to tell my story well.
At the event, I enjoyed hearing other stories, and seeing the range of emotional responses elicited. It gave a good feeling for Peace Corps' range itself.
SpeakeasyDC truly added value to Peace Corps’ 50th Anniversary Story Slam event. Amy Saidman, the Director of SpeakeasyDC, was wonderful to work with and her coaching helped our story-tellers to provide entertaining, dynamic and high quality storytelling performances. We are grateful to have had the opportunity to work with SpeakeasyDC!
During a Peace Corps-sponsored story telling presentation, the staff of SpeakEasyDC provided a considerable amount of instruction and constructive input to enhance my public-speaking skills. In a short period of time, I was able to stand before an audience of 60 people and tell a 10-minute story with the right amount of clarity, humor, and sincerity. Thanks to the folks of SpeakEasyDC!
As part of the Peace Corps story slam event, I was connected with Amy to refine my personal story. She was extremely helpful in helping me figure out what made my story compelling, as well as giving me ideas to make my telling of the story a bit more entertaining. We spoke on the phone for about a half hour and throughout the conversation I felt like she asked all the right questions and even better, let me respond and talk out my ideas and experiences.
I have attended about 20-25 SpeakeasyDC shows over the past 4 years. For 2 hours of solid entertainment, the $10 price of a ticket can't be beat anywhere in the DC area. The stories are always highly entertaining, often thought provoking, and have helped me to appreciate the perspectives of people that come from very different backgrounds that are substantially different from mine. I have never participated in their storytelling lessons (which they call "boot camp" or something like that), however, a couple of my friends have, and I have been very impressed with the results, as have they. Although I haven't necessarly liked literally every single story I've ever heard at SpeakeasyDC shows, I can honestly say that I have never seen anyone on stage who had not clearly put a great deal of time and effort into crafting and polishing their story.
Review from Guidestar
I saw a storytelling show last spring, and really enjoyed it. My friends encouraged me to give open mic storytelling a try, and I really enjoyed it! Not only have I found a regular place to enjoy one of my favorite types of performance, but I've had the opportunity to participate too. I can't say enough about how great this organization is.
Review from Guidestar
I've been to many of the performances and am always astounded at the clever story telling of the performers. It is apparent that the guidance and coaching they receive from Speakeasy staff enables them to have the confidence and skill to make the story lively.
I told a story at speakeasy DC last year, and it was a lot of fun. I wasn't naturally the greatest at it, but my story was true and they were super helpful at helping me hone it into something approaching entertaining. Every time I've been back since I am amazed by how well organized and diverse their organization is--they are a great asset to the community, and the only thing like it in DC.
This is by far one of my most favorite things to do in DC. The art of storytelling is one of importance that I don't think people think too much about. The stories are engaging, thought-provoking, humorous, and heartfelt. It's one of those events that seem to draw different types of crowds that are all there for one thing: to listen to the stories. This is a great organization led by passionate people that you just can't help want to get more involved.
I love SpeakeasyDC! I go there with friends all the time and I bring my out of town friends there too whenever they visit and it's always a hit.
Storytelling is the heart of the communicative power of art. To do this well requires organizations like Speakeasy DC. Speakeasy DC garners appreciation in the oral tradition and human experience. It provides an avenue to learn the craft of narrative.
I attended the Valentine's Day show with my girlfriend and I was thoroughly entertained. I didn't know exactly what to expect since it was a surprise but I found the stories to be very engaging, sometimes invoking poignant regret and lots of reflection. I could identify myself as a person who vacillates between 'logic, luck, and love' throughout my 33 years. The show also provided a great conversation starter. Bravo to the cast. They were great!!!
The Speakeasy is an INCREDIBLE resource that I was so lucky to have stumbled upon. I am a middle school theatre teacher, and professional theatre performer/director. With a background in playwriting, and 15 years of experience, I was curious what the Storytelling 101 class would really have to 'offer' me that was new/fresh/interesting/compelling. Honestly, my school paid for it, so I went.
I was BLOWN away by several things.
1. The teaching staff (namely Kevin Boggs and Vijay Nathan) was warm, constructive, enthusiastic, and a WEALTH of experience, ideas, and information.
2. The format was packed, well structured, and challenging. This class really forces you to "do the work" and dig in. I found myself challenged mentally, time-wise, emotionally, and creatively. I loved it. The schedule of 5 weeks, including watching a pro performance, rehearsing our performance, and performing our stories, was well crafted and filled to the brink. I hate to waste my time, and the Speakeasy folks respect our time, money, and intelligence.
3. The "community". I found (without knowing I was looking for) a tribe. I found people from all walks of life comign together once a week for a few hours to share stories, make mistakes, and listen and support one another. I was excited and inspired by my classmates, I looked forward with great anticipation to each class, and I was truly, honestly, deeply moved by their performances. The "result"- sharing a well crafted, personal, and honest story with others was touching enough- but the process to get there- watching the story and the storyteller grow and arrive at art- was astounding.
4. The resources! They offer fantastic handouts that I was able to adjust to fit the needs of my students. The opportunity for one-on-one coaching just seems too generous- even in a class, the faculty really make you feel as though they are personally, deeply committed to your success.
Overall the class, the experience, and the artists have motivated me to continue to attend performances, take additional classes, make personal connections, and find my stories. What a gift this has been.
Review from Guidestar
I have watched SpeakEasy DC grow from a local unstructured open mike format to what it has become.....a premier event with educators and tutors to provide the public with a rare opportunity to tell your story with professional guidance. Any SpeakEasy DC event is professional, intersting, mostly humorous and the best bargain in town for a night out. Can't wait for the next show.
I've taken two Speakeasy workshops and been on stage twice. Speakeasy coaches have given me great advice and tools on how to craft a meaningful story that is worth telling. In the process, I've made great new friends and heard some amazing stories by amazing storytellers. Speakeasy is certainly a unique DC organization that I'm grateful to have stumbled upon when I moved here a couple years ago.
Review from Guidestar
My husband and I attended "Logic, Luck, and Love" for your first Valentine's Day as a married couple.
It was the perfect evening - edgy, funny, touching. We hope to see many more of these shows in the future!
I'm an English teacher who took a Speakeasydc course to help with my curriculum story telling unit. The experience did far more than enrich my teaching. It was a deeply meaningful time that sold me forever on the almost sacred act of sharing true stories. A very talented and professional staff.
I would recommend Speakeasy DC for a great night out or to anyone who has ever wondered how to tell a story. I was introduced to the monthly format a couple of years ago when it was at the old location. Every show is well organized and professionally produced. I was inspired to take their storytelling bootcamp as well. What a rewarding experience!
I went to my first SpeakEasy event and heard absolutely fantastic stories about totally normal life events. I laughed. I cried. I wanted to be on stage. So I participating in their storytelling 101 boot camp--it was fantastic. To help people tell their stories and cut through the crap to bring out a narrative amidst the mundane is so valuable.
had heard lots about speakeasy and whenever i tried to attend, they were sold out! finally got in and was amazed at the quality of material and organization of the show. met the director amy, who is just amazing. she was searching for bigger venues to accomodate the ever growing audiences and she found the perfect venue. i tell all my friends to go to each speakeasy and love to repeat the stories i heard. amy is super organized and has the speakeasy group appearing in every possible venue (aka fringefest), constantly bringing more lovers of speakeasy into the fold. she has top notch staff to keep the on-line stories and info up to date, video folks, volenteers, especially performers, teachers,you name it~all fabulous and totally top notch. i am happy to be a donor and supporter of this most orginal group. truely a gem in washington dc where the usual entertainment fare can be so hoo-humm. i am also amazed at how each show crosses all socio-ecomonic, racial, age...all demographics are represented and there are so few places where that happens in such a wonderfully creative yet organized way~LOVE, LOVE, LOVE SPEAKEASY!
Review from Guidestar
SpeakeasyDC rocks! I attended one of their performances on Valentine's day, which was thoroughly entertaining, drop-dead funny, and quite inexpensive. Great organization: I would recommend them to anyone!
SpeakeasyDC rocked my world. I was loosely calling myself a creative writer, with no aspirations to get up in front of a room full of people (thought of it made my stomach turn inside out and all pores commence sweating), when I signed up for Storytelling 101 in order to improve my writing skills.
The curriculum and instructors taught me how to not only relay my stories to connect with an audience better and evoke emotion, suspense, excitement, etc...they also taught me, through baby steps, how to have the confidence to get up in front of people and share, overcoming, at least in the moment, the insane nerves and nausea.
Beyond that, SpeakeasyDC has brought new supportive/funny/interesting friends into my life and welcomed me into a new community.
I enjoyed the class and continue to enjoy the salons and performances, as well as the improvement in my writing and public speaking.
SpeakeasyDC has exposed me to the wonderful world of storytelling. It is not just telling stories, it is sharing a part of a person's life experiences. The warm and friendly atmosphere is always welcoming to all who attend the shows.
Speakeasy DC, to the best of my knowledge has never done anything about homelessness, poverty, disease, or substance abuse. In fact*, they may actually encourage alcoholism, because its so much fun to drink at their shows. They have not furthered humankind's understanding of the universe, supported scientific discovery or even enven encouraged a child to participate in the science fair. In fact*, they told him it was for nerds. Yet, this is my favorite non-profit in DC. I can't really justify all the money that I think you should give them, so check out a show and see for yourself.
* - not a fact.
Review from Guidestar
I attended a SpeakEasyDC performance last summer during the 2010 Fringe Festival. The stories were wonderful and well told, and served as a reminder that we all have amazing things to share. In this age of "soundbites" and speedy communication, it is also gratifying to know that the ancient art of storytelling is still alive.
I love Speakeasy because its the chance to see regular people so skillfully telling the most amusing, touching, serious stories about their lives, and in ays that I can often identify with. Its like a conversation with a friend, and yet with the warmth of an audience in live performance!
My friends and I love going to Speakeasy DC. The stories are funny and we leave the evening thoroughly creatively nourished. Most of the storytellers do an excellent job of building suspense and sharing some very intimate and poinent experiences in a humorous way. We like the venue too.
I was a student of their Storytelling 101 course, and it was a terrific experience. The instructors were helpful, constructive and generous with their time. It helped build my confidence in public speaking and it was a fun way to do it.
My son and I have attended several Speakeasy event and through the fringe festival and just loved the hilarious and poignant stories that the participants shared with us. We like it so much in fact that I gave my 18 year old your day long workshop as his birth day present - he loved it!
I've attended three SpeakEasy shows, and they all have been great! The stories are always interesting, and the storytellers are engaging. SpeakEasy provides an important service by teaching people how to tell their stories and providing them a safe and welcoming space to share them.
Review from Guidestar
I went to the most recent speakeasydc show and all the stories had certain levels of humor, poignancy and pathos. It was enjoyable and very well set up. I'll definitely go again soon.
Since moving to the DC area I have been fortunate to attend several Speakeasy events and have had a wonderful time at each one! I really value the opportunity to see young, up-and-coming talent and look forward to sharing a story of my own one day.
In a world of constant electronic connection, Speakeasy brings actual people together to tell and hear personal stories. I guess I started with This American Life, then discovered Porchlight in San Francisco through friends, the Moth in NYC through a guidebook, and Speakeasy through... years ago I heard somehow about the Washington Storyteller's Theater, and they used to have an International Storytelling Festival. I trekked out to the Finnish Embassy where I heard the tale of the Barking Mouse, and that's still one of my favorite stories. I keep hoping I'll meet a cute single guy at one of the events, and maybe someday I will. In the meantime it's a great way to build community and reconnect with live humans having the courage to stand up in front of a crowd and share their stories. Great social event/excuse to get together with people, too, with the option of drinking but not just a boring happy hour where you have to talk. Sometimes it's good just to listen.
At the Church of the Pilgrims, to which I belong, we often include personal storytelling in worship. One of our members told me about a SpeakeasyDC course she had taken. Intrigued, I signed up for a 1-day storytelling boot camp. Fantastic! Eighteen strangers spent 6 hours helping each other find and develop personal stories. I was convinced that training like this could enhance the storytelling we do in worship -- and build community! I pitched idea to our regional denominational office, and they contracted with SpeakeasyDC to offer two, one-day storytelling workshops for member of our congregations. Now we have about 30 people, clergy and lay, in about 8 churches, who are trained in the basics of effective personal storytelling. If you're in a faith community, check this out!
I took storytelling classes offered by Speakeasy DC, and it was a fantastic experience. The things I learned about structuring and delivering a story have helped me professionally as a marketer. I think the classes could benefit people in all fields. Everyone needs to be able to express themselves persuasively and stories do that best.
I first encountered SpeakeasyDC when it was still part of Washington Storytellers Theater, maybe in 2005. I began telling stories immediately, and Speakeasy became a homebase for me. I have performed more than 10 times on stage, and taken several storytelling classes. This experience led me to other storytelling experiences including appearing in the Capitol Fringe Festival. What is most admirable about SpeakeasyDC is the clear decision and commitment taken to be an educational venue for all, a place where non-tellers could try it out, gain skills and coaching, all in front of a very generous audience, and all while assuring the top quality possible -- a very difficult formula indeed, but one that's been met and more. The staff, board and volunteers are extraordinarily loyal - and their energy, charisma and talent continue to sustain a high quality endeavor that now has deep roots in the community and increasing connectivity nationwide.
I have been attending SpeakeasyDC events for over a year and I took their Storytelling 101 class.
SpeakeasyDC creates a sense of community and humanity, in a city where that can be very difficult to do. With every event, I feel closer to the city that I now call home, and to the many different people who share it with me.
I am a huge fan of SpeakeasyDC!!!
Everytime I go to a SpeakEasy event, I am never disappointed. Great people. Great stories. Great venues. I feel more connected to my community when I attend these events. All of the storytellers are really open and honest and relateable. Great job, guys!