Selected Shorts

By Symphony Space

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Category: Performing Arts

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Reviews: 2

 Apr 5, 2019

Christine W
 Sep 4, 2018


Our greatest actors transport us through the magic of fiction, one short story at a time. Sometimes funny. Always moving. Selected Shorts connects you to the world with a rich diversity of voices from literature, film, theater, and comedy. New episodes every Thursday. Produced and distributed by Symphony Space.

Episode Date
Too Hot For Radio: Tiphanie Yanique "The Special World"
A gorgeous story read by actor Hampton Fluker (The Blind Side, Patriots Day, and Shades of Blue) about race, leaving home, and the dramas of young life. After the reading, host Aparna Nancherla talks with the delightful author Tiphanie Yanique about, well, just about everything.  Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Apr 19, 2021
Make ‘Em Laugh: A Celebration of James Thurber
Guest host Jane Kaczmarek presents a program celebrating the great American humorist in some of the many genres in which he was drop-dead funny. Thurber confesses that he’s all thumbs in “I Break Everything I Touch,” performed by Keith Olbermann. Who knew that The Bard wrote whodunnits? Find out who in “The Macbeth Murder Mystery,” performed by Michael McKean and Susannah Rogers. Kristine Nielsen, Susannah Rogers, and Keith Olbermann perform a selection of Thurber’s fables, and McKean reads “Many Moons,” Thurber’s charming fairy tale about a princess who wants the moon. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Apr 15, 2021
Test the Waters
Guest host Hope Davis presents two coming-of-age stories that mingle memory, rebirth, and water.  Davis herself reads Elizabeth McCracken’s “It’s Not You,” in which a young woman checks into a grand hotel to cure a broken heart.   And from Isaac Babel, the Russian-Jewish author who wrote beguiling tales about the seamy side of early 20th century Odessa, comes "In the Basement.”  It has a familiar premise—the unlikely friendship between a poor boy and a rich one.  But Babel’s lush descriptions and comic energy make it remarkable.  The reader is Richard Masur. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Apr 08, 2021
Guest host John Darnielle presents favorite works that reflect on life, death and what comes next.   He reads Robert Browning’s chilling poem “My Last Duchess;” Molly Ringwald performs “No More Loves,” by Javier Marias, in which a ghost learns to read.  Kirsten Vangsness performs Neil Gaiman’s “When We Went to See the End of the World by Dawnie Morningside, Age 11 ¼.  The heroine of Robert Aickman’s “Le Miroir,” is mesmerized by an antique looking glass.  The reader is Kathryn Erbe.   Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Apr 01, 2021
Gravitational Forces
Guest host Hope Davis presents three stories involving irresistible impulses and twists of fate.  In Shirley Jackson’s “What a Thought” an awful idea threatens a happy marriage.  It’s read by Andrea Martin.  A science teacher has a crush in Jess Walter’s “Magnificent Desolation,” read by Bobby Cannavale.  And “Draft Day” affects the lives of childhood friends from different backgrounds in Rattawut Lapcharoensap’s story, read by BD Wong. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Mar 25, 2021
No Place Like Home: Best American Short Stories
Guest host Maulik Pancholy presents two selections from the 2018 Best American Short Stories anthology, with comments by guest editor, Roxane Gay.  In “Suburbia,” by Amy Silverberg, a young girl leaves home for the first time, and both she, and it, are transformed.   The reader is Martha Plimpton.   “Everything is Far from Here,” by Cristina Henriquez, goes to the heart of the country’s immigration crisis with an affecting portrait of a migrant mother and her son.  It’s performed by Zabryna Guevara. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Mar 18, 2021
Little Rebellions
Guest host Roxane Gay presents three stories about resisting the inevitable, and testing the status quo.  The title tells all in Haruki Murakami’s “On Seeing the 100% Perfect Girl One Beautiful April Morning,” read by Randall Park. A girl is tutored in fly tying by her father in Elizabeth Winthrop’s “The Golden Darters,” read by Ann Dowd, and a boy disappoints his wizard parents in “The Accountant,” by Robert Sheckley, read by Nate Corddry. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Mar 11, 2021
Too Hot For Radio: Kirsty Gunn "Dangerous Dog"
Read by actress Kirsten Vangsness, this Jane Eyre fan fiction imagines Mr. Rochester as a pit bull. After the story, host Aparna Nancherla talks to Jane Eyre expert, author Patricia Park, about the enduring allure of Charlotte Brontë's novel. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Mar 08, 2021
Dance in America
Guest host Jane Kaczmarek presents works celebrating dance.  A domineering mother uses an evening at the ballet to find fault in "My Mother Explains the Ballet to Me,” by Jesse Eisenberg, performed by Patricia Kalember. A pioneering African-American dancer remembers an audition in “Léonide Massine,” by Janet Collins, performed by Carmen de Lavallade. A magical garment transforms its owner in “The Cape,” by Ben Loory, performed by Tony Yazbeck. And the “Tango” undermines a stuffy WASP community in this funny story by Kurt Vonnegut, performed by Tony Shalhoub. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Mar 04, 2021
Too Hot for Radio: Tony Tulathimutte "Saint Pantaleone"
Our story today addresses, or should I say undresses - why snacking on your underwear might not be all that’s promised on the box. In this hilarious story written by Tony Tulathimutte, the narrator, played by actor Maulik Pancholy, is taking on the edible underpants industry. Later host Aparna Nancherla talks to the author about the inspiration for his story. Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Feb 02, 2021
Only Human: Anton Chekhov
Guest host Jane Curtin presents works by Anton Chekhov that were part of a celebration sponsored by Columbia University and hosted by Chekhov scholar Laura Strausfeld.  We’ll hear “A Drama,” performed by Cynthia Nixon—an ambitious writer overwhelms her idol; “Rapture,” performed by Robin Miles, Sam Underwood, Rainn Wilson, and Di Zhu—a young man enjoys his 15 minutes of fame; “Which is Better?,” performed by Rainn Wilson—Chekhov debates the merits of schools vs. pubs; and “Verotchka,” performed by Rainn Wilson—a studious young man confronts romance.  Join and give!: See for privacy information.
Nov 05, 2020