By Alex Eidman
Class of 2013
For the second straight year, students in the CUNY J-School’s Radio News Writing and Reporting class took the stage at nearby dive bar Tobacco Road to hone their storytelling chops. The event is inspired by the Moth series, with each student tasked with telling a five-minute story with no notes.
Kathleen Culliton told the story of a study abroad fling in Italy that ended awkwardly, new dad Jordan Davidson reminisced about the agonizing choice of picking a name for his daughter, and Bobbi Misick told a heartwarming story about her home country Turks and Caicos and her complicated relationship with one of its most popular foods, conch.
Radio instructor Alex Goldmark opened the festivities by discussing the inauspicious start to his radio career as a stringer for NPR in Brazil. Another highlight of the evening was a visit from Julie Polk, a veteran storyteller. She ended the night with a wild story about life on the road in a traveling Shakespeare troupe, and a performance that went haywire–complete with a costume malfunction and near-concussion.
The assignment challenges students to think about structure and pacing. In preparation for the event, veteran Moth storyteller Jim O’Grady visited the class and encouraged students to pick a story with “a clear beginning, middle, and end.”
By the end of the evening, 11 students took the stage, and their stories were recorded for future air on local radio stations.
Instructor Amanda Aronczyk’s section of Radio News Writing and Reporting will also take the stage at Tobacco Road on Monday, May 6 at 5 p.m. All are welcome to attend.