– Lip Service is true stories out loud. Every quarter, Books & Books hosts the most popular literary event in South Florida. Eight people, eight stories, eight minutes each. The stories are hilarious, heartbreaking, embarrassing, inspiring, and all true. –
The program is a mix of theater and literature. Seeing a show is like reading a person’s diary, or better, having that person read his or her diary to you. The stories are edited and rehearsed, but you never really know what you’re going to get until you get it. You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll cringe. And you are guaranteed to feel inspired to tell your own story.
Five years ago, Andrea Askowitz (Lip Service founder and co-producer) was sitting in the café at Books & Books. She’d just moved to Miami from Los Angeles where she spent many years listening to and telling stories to live audiences in bookstores, bars, theaters, wherever. She started a conversation with a bearded man in black jeans and a button down. Andrea asked him where someone could tell or hear live stories in South Florida. The man turned out to be Mitchell Kaplan, the owner of Books & Books. Mitchell suggested doing it at Books & Books. And so, on November 2, 2006, Lip Service was born.
Lip Service has grown considerably in its five years. Today, you can read a Lip Service story in our monthly print and online column in the Sun Sentinel’s City Link Magazine and starting May 7, 2011 at 11 p.m., you can watch our show on WPBT2. Lip Service is also collaborating with WLRN’s Under the Sun to bring South Florida stories to a live audience, April 23, 2011 at the Miracle Theater and a radio audience in May. And if you want to try your hand at storytelling, Lip Service Institute is now offering writing classes.
Esther Martinez is the co-producer of Lip Service. Esther is a writer, storyteller and graduate student in MFA at FIU. Her work has appeared in various publications including Newsday and the Daily Beast. She grew up in Miami and says that Lip Service is the cultural event we’ve all been missing.
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