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Best storytelling shows in New York City

Where to hear great storytelling as the city's gifted raconteurs spin yarns

Photograph: Matt Bresler
Moth’s StorySlam
If there are indeed eight million stories in New York City, these storytelling shows represent the best way to eavesdrop on a few. These performances are often more serious than the city's best comedy shows, less fictional than the best reading series, and the eclectic themes range from music to truth-telling to butts. And whether it's your downstairs neighbor on stage or one the funniest women in NYC, the storytellers at these events offer their hearts and histories to you in displays of utter fearlessness.

The Moth StorySLAM!

Critics' pick

Ten stories. Three teams of judges. One winner. The outrageously popular series—and podcast—pits local yarn spinners against one another, challenging them to deliver a tale based on a specific theme.

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Housing Works Bookstore Cafe Until Tue Apr 14

The How I Learned Series

Critics' pick

Blaise Allysen Kearsley stuffs this hip, energetic evening of readings with writers, comics and bloggers, each of whom recounts a story tied to a specific lesson, like "How I learned it's not me, it's you (or maybe it's me)."

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Union Hall Wednesday April 29 2015

RISK!

Critics' pick

Kevin Allison (formerly of the State) invites noteworthy New Yorkers to share stories that are daring in either content or the way they're told. Upcoming themes include "how bizarre" and "butts."

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Peoples Improv Theater Until Thu Mar 26

The Liar Show

In this theatrical performance, four storytellers detail events from their lives, ranging from the merely interesting to the revelatory. The catch: One of the four is fabricating everything.

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Cornelia Street Café Until Sat Mar 7

The Story Collider

Critics' pick

Erin Barker (a writer, copy editor and Moth GrandSLAM winner) and Ben Lillie (a TED contributing editor and physicist) curate this monthly roundup of science-themed stories.

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Under St. Marks Until Sat Jan 10

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