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About the Artists
MATTHEW DICKS is an elementary school teacher in the West Hartford Public Schools and author of six novels, including Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend and Twenty-one Truths About Love, as well as the nonfiction titles Storyworthy: Engage, Teach, Persuade, and Change Your Life Through the Power of Storytelling and Someday Is Today: 22 Simple, Actionable Ways to Propel Her Creative Life. Matthew is a 59-time Moth StorySLAM and 10-time GrandSLAM champion whose stories have been featured on The Moth Radio Hour and This American Life. He’s the founder of Speak Up, a Hartford-based storytelling organization.
JENI BONALDO lives in Bethany, Connecticut, with her husband, Mike, and their daughters, Ella and Charlie. She has been teaching English and Creative Writing at Amity High School for 20 years. She has told stories for The Moth, Speak Up, Tell Me Another Story, The Mouth-Off, Songs and Stories, and The International Festival of Arts and Ideas in New Haven. You can also find her on the Speak Up storytelling podcast. She is also a writer and is currently seeking representation for her first novel. She hopes that one of the millions of agents she has queried will see that it isn't terrible and worth publishing. This is the first time Jeni has done storytelling improv, and she's really angry with Matt for making her do it.
ELYSHA DICKS is the co-founder, Executive Director, and host of Speak Up and also the co-host of the Speak Up Storytelling Podcast. Elysha is a kindergarten teacher who spends her days singing songs about the weather and teaching kids to read and count to 100. Elysha likes dark roasts, hates cilantro, and can regularly be found strumming her ukulele or baking a challah.