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Meet Our Readers

In these times, we’re holding out for a hero more than ever. This Wednesday, Allie Kahan, Amy Sumpter, Crystal Lynette, Louise W. Knight, and Deborah Siegel bring us their personal definition of just that, from caped crusaders to feminist icons to family. Meanwhile, I’ll softly hum the lyrics to the Mariah Carey classic, and hope it adds ambience.

Allie Kahan

allie kahanAllie Kahan grew up in the suburban town of Glenview, Illinois. Heavily influenced by Nancy Drew, she was fond of trying to solve neighborhood mysteries, of which there were always none. Now, Allie is graduating in March with a degree in Communications and Media with a minor in Psychology. She has completed two internships working in the communications department of different non-for-profits. Allie writes weekly satirical articles for The Black Sheep, as well as hosts, interns and studies improvisation at iO Chicago. She is a monologist in DePaul University’s Vagina Monologues in February. In her spare time, Allie sees improv shows at iO, tries recipes from Chrissy Teigen’s cookbook, and fruitlessly tries to convince her friends how fun it would be to start a book club.

Amy Sumpter
amy sumpterAmy Sumpter
 is a cast member of the Kates. She can be seen all over Chicago doing stand up. When she isn’t doing that, you can find her high-kicking and rapping with She’s Crafty, Chicago’s all-female Beastie Boy tribute band.

 

 

 

 

Louise W. Knight

louise w. knightA native of Evanston who spent 20 years elsewhere after college, Louise W. Knight eventually found her Midwest roots too strong to ignore. Writing two books about Illinois-born Jane Addams also helped draw her back. After a career in university and nonprofit administration and fundraising, she is a biographer now, working on a third book about two radical abolitionist-feminists of the 1830s, the sisters Sarah and Angelina Grimke.

 

Deborah Siegel

Deborah SiegelDeborah Siegel is the author of two books and a pair of boy/girl twins, and the founder of the public voice consultancy, Girl Meets Voice Inc. She’s also co-founder of SheWrites.com, Senior Facilitator with The OpEd Project, and creator of the Girl w/Pen blog. A Visiting Scholar in Gender and Sexuality Studies at Northwestern University and a lover of all things lake, she’s an ex-New Yorker who bailed on academia but never fully left. Her writing has appeared in venues including The Washington Post, The Guardian, CNN.com, The Forward, Kveller, Slate, The Huffington Post, The American Prospect, Ms., More, and Psychology Today, and she’s been featured on The Today Show, at TEDx, and in the New York Times. Deborah is currently obsessed with a multimedia experiment in thinking out loud, and in community, about gender and early childhood. Learn more at http://www.deborahsiegelphd.com.

Crystal Lynette

crystal lynetteCrystal Lynnette is a lifelong, deep dish-eating, Cubs-loving, no ketchup on hotdogs-having Chicagoan. She is new to storytelling in front of adults, but spends most of her days telling stories to 9 and 10-year-olds as a 3rd and 4th grade teacher. During her free time she is training for a marathon, doing yoga, or watching reruns of The Office, and eating an embarrassing amount of Taco Bell (it is called balance).

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Twenty Seven Theme

Happy New Year! I’m pretty freaked out about our president elect, and pretty excited about our upcoming shows. We’re going to do kind of a staggered release this year (settle down, Beavis), you’ll get the rest sometime in March — something to look forward to during an interminable Midwestern winter. But yes. We’re looking for readers for everything with an asterisk, hit us up at missspokenchicago [at] gmail [dot] com if you’re interested. 

January: Heroes (BOOKED)

February: Basic*

March: Sibling Rivalry*

April: Letters*

May: Breakin’ the Law*

June: Munchies (BOOKED)

-Rose

Rites of Passage

Happy holidays! We hope you had a good Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or day off of work. The last Miss Spoken of 2016 is up on iTunes (and shortly, Stitcher). The theme was Rites of Passage, and featured readers included Sophie Amado, Lauren Catey, Turi Ryder, and Rachel Hyman.

2016 blew pretty hard, and 2017 is going to be even worse if we don’t do something about it. We’re committed to showing up in the coming year, whatever form that takes. As of January, that means our inaugural show. The theme is Heroes.

xoxo and RIP George Michael and Carrie Fisher (what the hell),

-Rose and Jasmine

Meet Our Readers

Walk with us through those ceremonies, formal and otherwise, that mark the passage from one state to another (please read the previous in a “Submitted for for the approval of the Midnight Society” voice). Us is Sophie Amado, Lauren Catey, Turi Ryder, Tamale Sepp, and Rachel Hyman, telling stories about Rites of Passage.

Sophie Amado

Sophie AmadoSophie Amado is a proud Chicago native and she will judge you if you put ketchup on your hot dogs or if you’re still not excited to hear Go Cubs Go since November 2nd. She received her BA from the University of Iowa and spent a year surrounded by Spanish ham and red wine in Madrid, Spain teaching English to high school students with the Fulbright program. Sophie returned to her homeland to go to grad school for creative nonfiction writing at Columbia College where she teaches rhetoric to freshmen and is an assistant editor for Hotel Amerika. When she’s not doing either of those things she likes eating food that requires chopsticks or Googling celebrities ‘birthdays.

Lauren Catey

Lauren CateyLauren Catey was raised on a farm in Indiana. Her best friend was a horse. She moved to Chicago 10 years ago to go to art school, which made her parents deeply uncomfortable. Now she spends her time writing and teaching 3rd graders in West Humboldt Park. She writes stories that they probably shouldn’t hear.

Turi Ryder

Turi RyderTuri Ryder has spent most of her working life where almost nobody can see her: on the radio. You may have heard her on Chicago’s WGN or WLS (AM or FM}. She has also offended people over the airwaves in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Minneapolis (where she was voted Best and Worst of the Twin Cities by the same entertainment weekly in the same year), and Seattle. Turi recently emerged from her soundproof room with a memoir, “She Said What?”.

Rachel Hyman

Rachel HymanRachel Hyman is the author of the poetry chapbook Dear S (Big Lucks, 2015). She co-edits the literary journal Banango Street and co-runs the Welcome to the Neighborhood reading series. She was born in Chicago and will probably die in Chicago.

 

 

 

Tamale Sepp

Tamale SeppTamale is a stand up comedian and interdisciplinary performer who splits her time between Chicago and the rest of the world. She also travels internationally with her fierce eyebrows. Voted runner-up for Chicago’s Best Stand Up Comedian for The Reader, Tamale is a regular at The Laugh Factory, Zanies Comedy Clubs, and countless local and national showcases. With a BS in Agricultural Education and an MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts and Media, her comedy occupies a wide spectrum, and never disappoints. Tamale also loves to shoot guns, skydive, and ride her giant motorcycle with an eyelash …because she has a lot to prove. Check her out at TamaleRocks.com and around town as she rides her motorcycle (often in costumes) with her pals in Bikes and Mics!

 

Road Trip, Wedding Bells, and Gossip Are Live

To kick off the holiday season, we’ve added the Road Trip, Wedding Bells, and Gossip shows to the podcast. Enjoy.

PSA: Resubscribe on iTunes

Sometime later this week, current subscribers will need to resubscribe to Miss Spoken on iTunes. Back when we started, I didn’t know much about podcasting. I still don’t. I do know that switching over to Libsyn gives a better UI, more options, analytics, you are probably bored so here it is again: We’re switching over to Libsyn. If you are currently subscribe, next time you go to Miss Spoken you will see a dead feed. You will need to resubscribe. Okay. Thank you.

 

 

 

 

Meet Our Readers

This Wednesday, we’re talking about you. The theme is Gossip and the readers are Jasmine Davila, Anjali Waikar, Josephine Yales, and Takelya Weathers. You heard it from them first.

Jasmine Davila

Jasmine DavilaJasmine Davila is the fast-talking, thoroughly charming co-host of “Vital Social Issues and Stuff”, a podcast about pop culture from a lady’s point of view. She has read in venues small and medium sized for shows such as Tuesday Funk, 20×2 Chicago, That’s All She Wrote and this very show. You can find Jasmine on the web by Googling “Jasmine Davila” and on Twitter as @jasmined.

 

 

Anjali Waikar

Anjali WaikarAnjali is thrilled to be back in her hometown of Chicago after living on the east coast for the past two decades. She was a member of a comedy improv troupe in college until she quit to play Division 3 tennis until she quit to join a hip hop dance troupe until she quit to volunteer in Guatemala until she quit to find herself. She believes in trying everything once. She’s a virgin storyteller to the stage, but regularly practices the art of storytelling in her day job as a lawyer.

 

 

Josephine Yales

Josephine YalesJ[osephine]. M. YaLes is the author of ‘A Coven in Essex County’, a writer, a poet, and ex-museum educator. She currently lives in Chicago after a life time in Wisconsin and a brief stint in Utah.

 

 

 

 

Takelya Weathers

takelya weathersHailing from the south side of the city, Takelya “TK” Weathers is an eternal dreamer with the heart and soul of a poet. She’s an avid writer who can oftentimes be found with a pen and paper in hand. While writing and theater are her first loves, she comes to us as a graduate of The French Pastry School’s L’Art du Gateau program and a lover of all things deliciously sweet. In her spare time, she works on building her MsBijou Sugar Artistry brand, being a student of the Second City Theater Training Center, and dreaming in full, living color.

Meet Our Readers

She said yes! This Wednesday, Mary Fons, Rebecca Makkai, Veronica Vidal, and Rebecca Duxler bring us stories of Wedding Bells at Gallery Cabaret. No hole in the wall’s gonna ruin our special day (no really, that happened last week):

hole in the building

But onto the readers:

Rebecca Makkai

Rebecca Makkai

Rebecca Makkai is a fiction writer who does occasional live lit so that her inner high school theater geek never dies. She has two novels, The Borrower and The Hundred-Year House, and a story collection, Music for Wartime. The story collection was printed on special paper made from that one tree that fell in the woods when no one was there to hear it. She teaches at Northwestern University and StoryStudio Chicago, and she lives on the North Shore, where she enjoys alarming all the Republicans.

Veronica Vidal

Veronica VidalOriginally from the land of Happy Days, Harley Davidson, and THE BEST fish fry, Veronica Vidal was born and raised in Milwaukee but has called Chicago home for 19 years now. She has performed at Is This A Thing and a couple of open mics. In her free time, she is slowly trying to rid the world of acronyms.

 

 

 

Mary Fons

mary fonsMary Fons is a writer and designer who loves Chicago a lot, especially downtown Chicago, which is where she lives. She is a proud Chicago Neo-Futurist and is currently pursuing her Writing MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She teaches writing at the University of Chicago Writer’s Studio and if you want to take her “Stories Onstage: Writing To Perform” class (four weeks long) you should do it. Mary writes a blog called PaperGirl and it’s loads of fun.

Rebecca Duxler

Rebecca DuxlerYour Friendly Neighborhood Uber Driver by day, literary artist and athlete by night, Rebecca Duxler is always hungry for adventures. As a super nerd and a black belt, she is usually found taking people’s breath away on a Dance Dance Revolution Machine, in the kitchen cooking way too much food, giving people glove and orbit light shows, on the computer writing and making websites, on the fighting field, and on stage. She has performed at various open mic nites, literary shows, variety shows, and local “Got Talent” contests across Chicago and the surrounding area. She is the proud owner of several blogs, such as “Your Friendly Neighborhood Uber Driver”, a blog documenting the (mis)adventures of being a rideshare driver. Rebecca’s ultimate goal is to be able to make a difference in the world with healthspiration (health and inspiration), spread positivity, enjoy randomly spontaneous moments, and share her contagious laughs! Someday, she will be a game show winner, the “Got Talent” queen, and the next million dollar winner on Wheel of Fortune!

 

Meet Our Readers

Hit the road tomorrow with Shay DeGrandis, Jenn Sodini, Roberta Miles, and Amy Eaton, who bring you tales of wrong turns and lost loves and mountain lions, oh my. Then there’s my story, which is mostly about not throwing up. There might be more to it. There’s definitely more to theirs. See you at 7.

Shay DeGrandis

shaygasShay DeGrandis is an artist, writer, well-meaning amateur therapist, accidental comedian, hospice volunteer, and soon-to-be funeral director. She produces and hosts the Chicago edition of Mortified, a comedy show of “personal redemption through public humiliation.” Helping performers bring to light their most awkward adolescent writing, she persuades them to excavate the hilariously embarrassing artifacts of their past and share their shame with strangers. She thinks it’s good to expose yourself. Learn more at getmortified.com.

Jenn Sodini

imageJenn Sodini grew up in Pittsburgh, went to school in Amherst, and then moved to Chicago and never looked back. She passionately hosts and co-produces CHIRP Radio’s The First Time, a live-music-and-storytelling series (quarterly at Martyrs’), and Psychotic Break, Chicago’s premiere mental-illness-themed variety show (first Wednesdays of every month at Schubas). She has been featured on The Moth Radio Hour with a story about running around with no pants on, which has surely helped her career as an analyst for a medical consulting firm. Jenn has also been featured on The Stoop, That’s All She Wrote, Blackout Diaries, Therapy Sessions, and Collector’s Edition, and is pleased to be a part of Miss Spoken. She’s finally moving out of her loft, so let Jenn know if you’re interested in purchasing a 7-foot-tall paper maché yeti.

Roberta Miles

934667_10151516665493773_1008715403_nRoberta Miles’ award-winning autobiographical monologues touch on growing up in Chicago in the 70’s and her life’s indiscretions and romantic regrets. Roberta chronicles her quest for mental and physical health with brutally hilarious candor. She has crafted her monologues into the one-woman show, I Want a Banana, and Other Desperate Love Stories, which she has performed at Strawdog Theatre and BoHo Theatre.

As the co-creator and producer of Loose Chicks and producer of Cafe Cabaret, Roberta continues to push the envelope with a wide range of memorable performances.

Amy Eaton


Amy Bio 2016Amy Eaton has performed original work with Tellin’ Tales Theatre and is a 2-1 Write Club winner (though she swears that 1 was really a tie).She has performed as an actor with Curious Theater Branch, Thunder Rd Ensemble, Mary-Arrchie and others. She served as Artistic Director for Evanston Children’s Theater and founded Mudlark Theater Company.
She lives with her two beautiful giant size teenagers who are being homeschooled, her incredibly patient husband and three jerky cats.
She comes from the Twilight Zone. But that’s another story.

Consent

On July 27th, 2016, our theme was Consent. Featured readers included Ada Cheng, Sarah Meltzer, and Caitlin Brecht.

-Rose