East Greenwich has restaurants galore, the Odeum is reopening soon, and now we have The Living Room, a storytelling series that debuts this Thursday at the Kentish Guard Armory on Peirce Street.
These are not children’s stories. These are personal stories told in a performance setting a la This American Life radio show, the Moth in NYC, and Providence’s own Live Bait. That’s right, big city stuff right here in East Greenwich.
It’s the brainchild of Deb Walsh, who for years has been envisioning meaningful ways to bring people together.
“There aren’t really many spaces where people can connect one-on-one,” said Walsh in a recent interview. “I want people to feel connected again.”
Walsh said it’s especially important these days, where the constant roar of everyday life threatens to drown out real thought.
“Because we’re running around so crazily, people are finding it harder and harder to carve out spaces and time to intentionally reflect on the larger questions,” said Walsh. “We have all these clubs that we put together around activities. Why not have a space for people to look at their own life, where they’ve been, where they are, and where they might want to go?”
The Living Room’s first evening will feature five “storytellers” – their names have not been made public – who are not professional storytellers. Instead, they are people who’s live experience, either by design or circumstance, has given them a story to tell.
“It’s how people went through transitions in their live and were changed as a result,” Walsh said.
According to Walsh, we all have stories. It’s a matter of uncovering them, recognizing them, sharing them. That’s where the Living Room comes in.
The Living Room is built on three foundations: consciousness, creativity, and connection, she said. In the future, Walsh said she hopes to bring in people to talk about world-changing humanitarian work they are doing as well as authors and other artists.
On Thursday, the event – "Beginnings and Endings" – starts at 8 p.m. and will last about 90 minutes, with each speaker talking for six to eight minutes, and an opportunity for conversation afterward. The cost is $10, $5 for students with ID. Doors open at 7:30.
Email to reserve your tickets: email@example.com or take your chances at the door.