by Ex Fabula blogger Krista Lanphier

photos courtesy of Kat Berger.

Ex Fabula’s most recent storytelling event was held on Tuesday April 12th at the warm and inviting Bay View Brewhaus. The theme of the evening was “Theory and Practice,” and the event quickly became an example of storytelling theory in practice!

Paul Crowley, Grant Hagen, Amie Losi, Michael Heider, Rebecca Segal, Patrick Schmitz, Linda Muza,  Alicia Wahl and Kristia Wildflower had their names picked out of the hat, thus earning the chance to share a true tale on stage. In the end, it was an extremely close race for a chance to appear at the season finale event, Ex Fabula ALL STARS.

We were entertained by Paul’s story of his endless attempts to quit his job working for a Renaissance fair. Quitting should have been easy, but his boss who couldn’t take no for an answer.

Next came Grant – who talked about his and his wife’s memories of how they saw their first two daughters married off to wonderful men. He then went on to share the story of his third daughter who, while teaching English to monks in Nepal, decided upon an impromptu marriage to a local man.

Amie reminisced about her sunny beach days in her home state of California….and then shared how she moved to Wisconsin with her three children all under the age of 6, in the middle of heavy snow, to help her husband fulfill his dream. In the end, Amie dream of having someone to love and cherish her also came true in its own special way.

After reading Jack Kerouac’s On The Road at the ripe age of 16, Michael ran off to New York City in search of a new, exciting life. He found himself shacked up in an apartment in Greenwich Village with no heat and a drunken owner. One day he wakes up to an Irish Setter taking a poo just 6 inches from his head, and decides immediately to find a way back to Milwaukee. He makes it, but only after many days “on the road” –which included getting arrested in Chicago.

Rebecca shared memories of studying in France along with a group of students that hailed from all over the world. On one sleepy night, an Irish student decides to stage a party at an abandoned factory. Rebecca was sure it was going to be a boring night, but after a night of drinking alcohol, jamming to music and running away from the police, it ended up being the party of her life.

Patrick then recounted the time he came into the big city for an audition and accidentally ended up at Art’s Performing Center instead of the Performing Arts Center; after an amusing encounter with the bouncer, Patrick eventually realized that Art’s was actually a strip club and made it to his real audition.

Linda told her angst-ridden story of how her only son out of 6 children, who grew up in a “world of women,”  decided to join the army. After he was stationed in Iraq, she is heartbroken by the irrevocable changes she sees in her beloved only son…and only wishes she could have him back, away from the “world of men.”

Alicia reminisced about how, as a technician for the Santa Fe Opera, she and her roommates couldn’t get any relief from a pestering neighbor until they devised a cop-proof strategy of living – and partying – that involved tie-dye, pajamas, pizza, root beer and muppets.

And finally, Kristia told of her story of how she had planned for months to attend a writer’s workshop in Oaxaca, Mexico, but after missing her flight, found herself making new friends at Chicago O’Hare over the course of 10 hours. She never made it to Mexico…but she did find new friends.

At the end of the night, the audience voted and selected Amie Losi as the evening’s Audience Favorite.

In theory, you’ve wanted to be at every Ex Fabula event this season, but we know that in practice, those intentions don’t always work out. But don’t fear! At Ex Fabula ALL STARS, you can hear new tales from the storytellers that were voted Audience Favorite as each event.  Ex Fabula ALL STARS will take place Thursday June 2nd, 8 pm at Turner Hall Ballroom. The appropriately mysterious theme will be  ‘Secrets & Lies’. Last year’s event was packed, so buy your tickets early!