Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Happy Endings

Amanda Stern

The Happy Ending Reading and Music Series, hosted by Amanda Stern, requires authors to take one public risk (do something they've never done before) on stage. This is where I'll be tonight. Here's what people have done in the past:
Jessica Anthony sang “What a Feelin’” in sign language
Lucy Corin gave a science lecture without understanding her lecture topic
Michael Cunningham gave a five minute lecture on the entire history of English literature. 
Julie Orringer played “2 second animal,” with the audience, a game she made up on an airplane
Ryan Harty breathed fire
Kevin Wilson read obituaries he wrote for himself in high school. Each one cast him as a man of great importance in fields as varied as football and movie star

Sarah Manguso read her intake form from the hospital
Andrew Sean Greer swapped entire outfits with a female audience volunteer, onstage!
Jonathan Caouette gave everyone his home address and telephone number
Colson Whitehead read pop-culture Haikus he wrote
Tanguy Viel recreated his junior high graph that charted his friendships
Manil Suri did a Bollywood dance number in full costume
Paul Harding read his one star Amazon reviews
Paul La Farge ate a tub of wasabi
Laurie Sandell read her unbearably pretentious college essay, aloud
Brian Selznick recreated a song and dance number from a high school play
Jonathan Ames kissed David Cross on the mouth
David Cross kissed Jonathan Ames on the mouth
Nathaniel Rich played recordings of the band he had at age 9, “2 Live Moo”
Stephen Elliott made out with a stranger from the audience
A.M. Homes speed-dated 4 members of the audience
Richard Price told a personal story about his family
Ian Chillag had a legally blind audience member cut his hair onstage
Benjamin Percy bench-pressed the host, Amanda Stern
Rattawut Lapcharoensap taught the audience Thai cheers.
Aimee Bender improvised a story telling session, by telling a fairy tale in the style of Mad Libs. She used the audience members as the part of speech participants.
Rick Moody sang acapella a song he had written recently.
John Lurie played harmonica for the first time on stage in 35 years.
Danzy Senna took volunteers from the audience to act out scenes from L. Ron Hubbard’s Scientology manual.
Ben Greenman read aloud his pin codes and credit card numbers

Lowell Handler told Tourette jokes

. Lowell Handler has Tourette syndrome.
Laurie Anderson did a Power Point presentation

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