How To Build A Fire

How To Build A Fire | Schedule | Videos | Images | Press Release


Beginning in March 2014, poet Terence Degnan curates and hosts “How to Build a Fire: Advancing the Oral Tradition”, a storytelling series at Open Source Gallery, which takes place on the last Thursday of every month through March of 2015.

New York City has seen its share of storytelling series over the years. From The Moth, to Long Story Long, to How I Learned, and everything-in-between, New Yorkers have been upholding the “spoken tradition” since the inception of the boroughs, themselves.

In How to Build a Fire, Terence Degnan explores the course of the narrative, not only as it is heard, but also as it experiences its reiterations.

The title lends itself to two binding concepts: That language, in its primitive forms, must have been used to “pass on” the vital information of fire-starting from one generation to the next; that one story can bind an audience and possibly bolster our common threads.

Each months sees four storytellers (or stories), who will weave tales, ad hoc. Playwrights, actors, poets, bartenders, artists, doctors, social workers, psychologists, barbers, skaters, politicians, and community members from all walks of life will be asked to tell their pivotal tales. Storytellers are not asked to memorize and recite their accounts. “Truth” is not empirical to the stories themselves, as many truths bend with time, and many stories surprise their tellers. Some stories may be told by dual participants in alternating dialogue (spouses, siblings, etc.), whom lived them out; to explore how many narratives can have complex, and oftentimes hilarious, truths.

Storytellers invite their friends, kindred workmates, and families to come listen. In this manner, the oral tradition has an opportunity to advance. An audience is an intricate member of our modern-day folktales. What an audience hears, a borough can know. What a borough knows can become a thread in our braided history, if we tell it well.

Terence Degnan is a poet in Brooklyn. He sometimes edits books of poems for Sock Monkey Press. He’s published a book, and written and released a play. His voice can be heard in a few spoken word albums released in 2006 and 2008. Another book of poems by Terence, entitled “Still Something Rattles” will be released in 2014. He lives in Park Slope with his wife and daughter.

If you have a good story to tell, and would like to participate, contact the gallery for more details.

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In Practice: KoKo NYC Teaching Artist Exhibition

In Practice: KoKo NYC Teaching Artist Exhibition | Press Release | Cook Thugless at Freddy’s | KoKo NYC January 27-February 17, 2018 Opening Reception: February 1, 7-9pm Performance by Cook Thugless: February 7, 8:30pm (Freddy’s Bar, 627 5th Ave, Brooklyn) Gallery open by appointment. Contact to visit: Open Source Gallery presents In Practice, our […]


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Soap Box Derby 2015
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