LISTEN! Ex Fabula WMSE Radio Show

Two more Ex Fabula Radio Shows are springing up, featuring stories from our last event at Stonefly with the theme of “Emergency!”  Storytellers will include Lauren Poppen, Brooke Maroldi, and Anja Notanja – that evening’s winner.

To catch these radio shows, tune into WMSE for lunch on Wednesday, April 6th, during the Milwaukee Midweek show airing at noon, or for breakfast on Sunday, April 10th, before Dewey’s Radio Show at 8:30am.

Also, don’t forget that the next Story Slam is coming up quickly: Tuesday, April 12th, at 8pm at the Bay View Brewhaus. You won’t want to miss stories on the theme “Theory & Practice.”

WATCH! Spectacular Video “Gifts”

Take a look at this medley of  ‘Gift’ stories that were told at Ex Fabula’s Spectacular event held at Turner Hall ballroom.   Some of Milwaukee’s best; Grant Hagen, Amie Losi, Dan Niederloh, Deaduri Gales, Emmett Gross, Cindy Grover and Lisa Gatewood.

This spectacular video was taped by Cole Quamme,  Ryan Reeve, Li Wang, Adam Presti.  Art Direction and editing performed by Adam Presti and Kara Mulrooney.

See you on Tuesday 1/11/11 at Stonefly Brewery for our ‘It Gets Better’ story slam.

Ex Fabula Spectacular Bits:

LISTEN! Chipmunk “Confession” from Bud Dombrow

Here’s another great story from “Confessions” on Oct 13 at Stonefly. Our next event is TONIGHT at Bay View Brew Haus, 8 pm, with the theme “Neighbors”.

Bud Dombrow had something to get off his chest – about chipmunks…

Click below to listen:

Thanks to WMSE for recording – their pledge drive is going on now! Click here to donate:

Bud. Photo by Kat Berger.


LISTEN! Ex Fabula 6: Dan Niederloh – Stranger in a Strange Land Modern Times Version

Ex Fabula Regular Dan Niederloh told a very close to home Stranger story on April 13, 2010 at Ex Fabula 6, held at Stonefly Brewery.


Dan Niederloh at Stonefly – Photo by Kat Berger

Recap of Ex Fabula6 at Stonefly

Audience at Stonefly (photo by Kat Berger)

The last regular event of Ex Fabula’s inaugural season took place on Tuesday April 13 at Stonefly Brewing Company. 150 people packed the house for true, personal stories on the theme “Stranger in a Strange Land“. The event was sponsored by 91.7 WMSE and 89.7 WUWM. Interspersed with the nine stories, emcee Matt Sabljak read Ultra-Shorts written by audience members during the course of the 2-hour event.

Lane Burns (photo by Kat Berger)

The first storyteller drawn from the hat was Ex Fabula veteran Dan Niederloh; his tale of escape from clinical depression featured a therapist that looked like Pete Townsend of “The Who”. Next, Lane Burns took the stage and shared her own tale of escape- in this case, from a layover in an airport in South Korea. Unable to pay the “Korean currency only” airport tax and unable to contact anyone outside the airport, Lane was saved by the kindness of strangers. Then, sisters Laura Halfmann and Stephanie Halfmann debuted “The Duo”, a new format in which two people tell a single story about a shared experience. Their story of a long journey hiking up a mountain included a sketchy tour guide, a monkey attack, the “click, trudge, trudge” known as the Halfmann trudge, and many other memorable moments.

Conn Hagen (photo by Kat Berger)

After a beer break, the audience was treated to 3 more Solo stories by audience volunteers. Conn Hagen’s story highlighted how a simple sandwich pick-up can turn into a complex circus. Then, Richard Newman told of his travels in Europe while part of a theatre group; to summarize, he does not recommend Air Italia, their fish brothy coffee, or their baggage handling services- unless you are a puppet looking to rack up some miles. Liza Bielby wrapped up the trio of Solos by recounting the time she spent in China, studying a traditional form of opera. When a Chinese man asked for her help as an interpreter, little did she know that she would accidentally become part of a failed attempt to scam some investors from Texas.

Cindy Grover (photo by Kat Berger)

The last person drawn from the hat was Jeanie Dean, whose Solo focused on her brief journey into a world of violence and addiction; as a shooting was about to happen, Jeanie told herself that “this will not happen in my presence” and eventually found herself being a human shield. Then, Cindy Grover told of a mishap in Costa Rica, where “I need bus. You go fast.” in broken Spanish was sufficient to get her back on track; “reunited with my luggage and it feels so good,” she quipped. Finally, Melissa Kingston, a member of the comedy troupe Broadminded, and her brother’s wife Kerri Ladu took the stage for the Terkel, an interview format. Melissa asked her sister-in-law what it was like to join her loud, liberal family after growing up in a quiet, conservative family that didn’t even go to movies. “My mom made June Cleaver look like Sharon Osborne,” Kerri mentioned. Over time, she’s no longer shocked by the loud passionate arguments and she loves the family’s honesty and openness.

At the end of the night, storytellers who had thrown their names in the hat but did not get to tell a story had a moment to come up on stage and share the first line of their stories; there were hints of many more fascinating tales, and we hope to hear those stories at future events.

To round out the evening, the audience members voted, and Laura and Stephanie Halfmann were selected as the Audience Favorite storytellers. In being selected, the sisters have earned a spot at Ex Fabula ALL STARS which takes place Friday May 14 at Turner Hall. The night’s theme is “Epic Fail” and will feature new, longer stories from all the Ex Fabula Audience Favorites. $10 tickets can be purchased here.

Laura and Stephanie Halfmann being crowned (photo by Kat Berger)

More photos from this event can be found on the Ex Fabula facebook page.

And, the Theme for our April event is…….

‘Stranger in a Strange Land’

Milwaukeeans will undoubtedly be relieved to see Winter vanquished in the coming months, but saying goodbye to Ex Fabula’s first season will be a bittersweet affair. That’s right: Ex Fabula’s next event—8pm, Tuesday April 13th at Stonefly Brewery, 735 East Center Street in the Riverwest neighborhood—will mark the second-to-last event in this spectacular inaugural season. So be there or be square! The theme is “Stranger in a Strange Land.”

April’s event at Stonefly Brewery will be the sixth and final opportunity for our audience members to take the stage and show off their storytelling chops. On May 14th, we will be bringing the season to an official close with a bang: “Ex Fabula All-Stars, Theme: Epic Fail” will bring back audience favorites and a few special guests for the storytelling event to end all storytelling events. Are you ready for this, Milwaukee? We hope so.

Let’s take a moment and recap all the yarn-spinning action that’s occurred since Ex Fabula first coalesced in October of last year:

· Six events at six different locations in four distinct neighborhoods from Bay View to Wauwatosa

· 70 different storytellers who shared 70 very different personal experiences, from sex changes drunken bicycling

· Nearly 700 happy listeners served

And lest we forget, Ex Fabula didn’t even exist seven months ago. In a little over a half of a year, we’ve gone from nary an idea to a full-fledged event series! During our summer break, we’ll be producing a regularly scheduled radio show on WMSE. You didn’t think we’d just leave you hanging for three months, did you?

Like the previous events, this sixth event at Stonefly Brewery will feature three different storytelling formats:

· “The Solo.” Individual storytellers—some selected in advance, and some drawn at random from audience volunteers—tell true, five minute stories without notes.

· “The Rashomon.” This format is named after Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa’s classic that explores multiple perspectives. Two storytellers take the stage to share their versions of the same story.

· “The Terkel.” A question and answer format featuring one interviewer and one interviewee.

As always, audience members will crown their favorite storyteller at the end of the night.

Those who are interested in vying for a storytelling spot should put their names in the hat by 7:45 pm. The volunteer storytellers for the evening will then be randomly drawn to compete side by side with storytellers arranged in advance. Would-be storytellers should choose stories that tie in to the theme “Stranger in a Strange Land”. They should practice without notes and to the five-minute time limit as they will be cut off if they run over five minutes. Storytellers should pay particular attention to the first and last lines of their stories and ensure that they are vivid and compelling.

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