Originated in New York City, The Moth is an open-mic storytelling show that has spread across the country, all the way to Los Angeles, where there’s certainly no dearth of performers. There’s a pre-announced theme for each Moth show (“nerve,” “grudges,” “shifting gears,” “fall from grace,” “taking sides”). Participants put their name in a hat for a chance to present their piece onstage. If chosen, you get five minutes to tell a cohesive (and true!) story—with beginning, middle and end—that falls under the theme. The story (and its telling) is scored from 1 to 10 by preselected audience-member judges. It’s a friendly competition that helps to shape emerging storytellers, and the quick turnover (ten storytellers per show at five minutes each) keeps the audience attentive. A tip for viewers: Look at the schedule beforehand and pick a show with a theme that interests you; if you just went through a breakup, it would suck to show up at “true love” night.