Adults share snippets from childhood
ASHLEY TOKARUK, CONTRIBUTOR
People filled The Park Theatre on Nov. 15 to witness some Winnipeggers explore their creative past. Sixteen performers took to the stage for the event Grownups Read Things They Wrote as Kids (GRTTWAK).
Readings included letters to parents from camp, notes passed between a young girl and boy, hate mail to the Tooth Fairy and nonsensical poems.
Primrose Madayag Knazan, 40, shared three poems she characterized as “the good, the bad and the ugly.”
She read her “bad” poem called “Forgotten Feelings,” laughing at herself throughout the entire piece. She said she wrote her “ugly” poem with the intention of confusing her boyfriend at the time.
“Perspectives,” she read. “The cloudless skies and empty sky and the colour blue is merely the pink of happiness coloured gray.”
The audience howled at how silly the poem sounded.
Madayag Knazan found the GRTTWAK Facebook event page a few weeks prior to the event, but it wasn’t until two presenters dropped out on the day of the event that she volunteered to read.
“I knew it was funny, but when I was actually saying it out loud I was like ‘Wow this is worse than I could ever imagine’,” said Madayag Knazan. “It felt so beautiful when I was a kid, its like ‘Whoa this is the most epic thing I’ve ever written.’”
Audience member Cara Asham, 21, said, “I had no idea what any of the poems meant — I think that’s the point. Anyone can relate to writing things when they were young and thinking its brilliant when really it’s not. That’s what makes this event so great.”
GRTTWAK started in 2007 after creator Dan Misener, 33, and his wife read through their childhood journals and schoolwork.
“We started doing it in a tiny little bar with some friends having drinks and reading this kind of material out loud,” said Misener. “It just sort of snowballed ever since.”
GRTTWAK first took place in Toronto. Now the show travels across the country.
Along with live shows, GRTTWAK is a podcast. Misener has made ten episodes from GRTTWAK events. New events are added to the podcast every other week and the podcast now has almost 2 million downloads.
“We’re going to keep doing it as long as there is an appetite,” said Misener.