If you love West Virginia Public Broadcasting’s The Moth Radio Hour, you’ll love The Moth Mainstage, which is bringing a troupe of storytellers from across the country to the West Virginia Culture Center in Charleston this Thursday, March 5, at 7 p.m.
The theme of the night will be “We The People” and will feature a Mountain State storyteller. W.I. "Bill" Hairston has been a storyteller since 1985 and many of his stories are based on his experiences growing up on the Coal River in rural West Virginia. They embody the rich Appalachian culture and authentic African American culture he was exposed to as a child. Hairston has performed at concerts, festivals, libraries, corporate meetings and schools throughout the region and across the country.
The production will be hosted by Jon Goode, an author, poet, and playwright who hails from Richmond, Va., and currently resides in Atlanta, Ga. He has been a featured performer on HBO’s Def Poetry, TVOne’s Verses & Flow, and BET’s Lyric Café. His stage play Khalas was showcased in the 2013 International Festival of Arts and Ideas. In 2006, Goode’s work with Nick @ Nite earned him an Emmy nomination alongside the Promax Gold for best copyright North America. Goode’s debut collection of poems and short stories, Conduit, was published in 2015; has received to date 47 five-star reviews; spent 12 weeks as the No. 1 title in its category on Amazon.com and is the best-reviewed book of poetry on Amazon.com for 2015-2016. He is the host of The Moth StorySLAM in Atlanta.
Other storytellers include:
- Jackie Andrews. She was raised in Western Nebraska in the 1970s. After college, she served as an Army officer and now lives in Columbus, Ohio. She is a glass artist and tutor and spends her days building her home next door to her daughter and grandchildren.
- Andrea Collier. She is an award-winning author, journalist and photographer based in Lansing, Mich. She has been married to Darnay Collier for 38 years and is the mother of two adult children. Her favorite title is “GoGo” to her two grandsons.
- Muneesh Jain — Originally from Kalamazoo, Mich., Jain has lived in New York City for 12 years. His biggest passions in life are baseball and Broadway. Between the months of April and October, you will most likely find him in one of the 30 MLB ballparks across the country, catching a ballgame, talking to strangers and eating ice cream out of a mini-helmet. During the offseason, he’s probably at a musical or a play. He is the co-host of The Clubhouse Podcast where he and his friend, Anthony Rapp, interview celebrities about why they love baseball. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @RoundingThirdMJ. Jain was recently nominated for a 2020 Emmy Award.
- Trevor Nourse — He grew up on the Kentucky side of the Tennessee border in a little place called Tuckessee. By day he is busy climbing trees as a forestry technician in Louisville, Ky. By night, he is a ramen noodle connoisseur. During travels to new cities, he loves to hunt down the perfect bowl of pork tonkatsu. And just for kicks, he is also an expert at misplacing his slippery iPhone and frantically dashing around new cities tracking strangers down to retrieve it with the handy dandy Find My Phone app. Nourse says he’s the luckiest man alive.