If you’re just looking for brilliant, authentic stories to fill your days, then “The Moth” is absolutely where you should turn. An absolute classic, “The Moth” podcast has been around since 2008, but its true origins actually go all the way back to 1997. The podcast is actually a recorded live show in which the storytellers stand alone under a single spotlight and tell whatever story is on their minds. It’s a podcast about the human experience as told through thousands on thousands of stories.
The podcast has released around 350 episodes that you can listen to. Episodes are typically 20 minutes long except for “The Moth Radio Hour” episodes which are, of course, an hour. The shorter episodes consist of one or two people telling their stories, while the hour long episodes are filled with more people and more of their stories.
“The Moth” describes itself as “high-wire act of shared experience” as people from all walks of life, all professions, all social statuses, can come and do what’s essentially a TedTalk about themselves. Well, not themselves themselves, but some pivotal moment or journey that changed their life and could potentially change yours.
“The Moth” actually began in the living from of George Dawes Green, a novelist living in New York at the time. A native of Georgia, he missed the nights where he and his friends would meet up and tell gripping tales of life. He named his New York living room event after a moth attracted to a light – that single spotlight beckoning others to join and spin their yarns of life, love, loss, and hope. The events quickly spread through venues across the city and eventually, the country.
The shows, what are open-mic nights in a sense, each start with a theme, and storytellers are invited to come up and tell a story that explores it. It often results in unexpected stories from unsuspecting people – each one true, unique, and desperately authentic. “The Moth” calls their program a mix between documentary and theater.
Literally thousands of stories, told live and without any notes to aid them, have been told at Moth events around the world. Interestingly, the lack of structure and production (don’t get us wrong, we love a beautifully produced podcast) is what makes this podcast so invigorating. Every single story will make you laugh and/or cry. “The Moth” is based entirely in making all of us feel not only more connected to one another but more human. Between the differences of every story are grounding similarities that remind us that we are all in this together.
“The Moth” is a decadent and moving experience that everyone should try just a little bit of. What started as a small experiment with a deep meaning has spread across the globe and attracted people like, well, like moths to a light. Be sure to dip your toes into all of the stories this world has to offer.