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Stories Take The Stage At The Stoop

By Staff in Arts & Entertainment on Jul 31, 2014 6:00PM

The Stoop hosts Lily Be and Clarence Browley, photo by Tamara Matthews

The stoop is a shared, casual space. People come and go. If someone’s telling a crazy story maybe you’ll stick around and tell one of your own. That’s the concept behind The Stoop story series at Rosa’s Lounge.

The Stoop, formerly Stoop Style Stories—an alliteration that proved too much of a tongue twister—is not like other performance series. It’s more like “city council meeting meets the hood” according to co-host Lily Be. “We’re not out to be Chicago’s best lit show,” she said during the June performance. “We just want people to tell stories, connect with each other, talk to each other—be a part of something real.”

The show format, like the newfound name, keeps it simple. Featured storytellers take part without pretension. People who appear to be frequent audience members jump onto the open mic spots. People trickle in. The starting time is more of a general suggestion than a scheduled appointment or, according to co-host Clarence Browley, “It’s the stoop; it just starts when it starts.”

The community feeling is real and Lily Be and Clarence are the perfect hosts to cultivate it. Not to mention the family-owned blues mainstay Rosa’s Lounge being the more than appropriate gathering spot.

Folks will gather on The Stoop again tonight, July 31. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 8 p.m. The theme will be “The Shit” and featured performers include Bill Drew, Darren Bodeker, Paul Whitehouse, and Daniel Ramirez. And even if you can’t make it, you can always view the live stream on

By: Tamara Matthews