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Flatball Radio | Kelly Hansen – “Why I Hate Self Officiation”

by | July 27, 2015, 7:00am 0

I thought I knew the majority of people in the Portland ultimate community until I started researching storytellers for this project. I solicited storyteller suggestions for months and took coffee meetings with numerous people I had never met. Kelly was one of those people who someone else recommended as  “a good person to talk to.”

In the spirit of making good impressions, I was 30 minutes late the first time we met. We mostly talked about the project, who she thought might be good and briefly about her own desires/qualifications to tell a story on stage. My tardiness cut our encounter short and I didn’t leave with a solid sense of her ability to craft and tell a story in front of an audience. Fortunately, she sent me a follow up e-mail saying that she would like to be considered for one of the seven slots. It wasn’t until a subsequent hour long phone call where I dipped out of work and realized I would rather listen to her stories than collect my hourly rate.

At our first dinner meeting with all the storytellers, we used the first half to talk about story and the important building blocks of creating a good one. The second half was used for each storyteller to pitch some ideas that could be fleshed out for the show. Sitting in a circle of eight people and sharing very personal anecdotes is a difficult proposition – I’m glad that I picked Kelly to go first. Kelly’s first story idea invoked recent tragedy in her life, and after she talked about it, nothing felt out of bounds. Kelly made it immediately possible for us to share honestly as a group. It set the tone for the rest of our workshopping sessions.

The following two months revealed a lot about Kelly. She sent me multiple drafts of her story on the same day, and spreadsheets comparing the structure of her story to another story she liked. Kelly cared deeply about crafting something profound and entertaining for the stage. Her enthusiasm went beyond just leaving the audience’s jaws on the floor (which she did). Kelly can be heard in the intro and outro of most Flatball videos yelling each storyteller’s name at the top of her lungs. I am thrilled to have her story added to this project and feel lucky to have her as a member of this Portland team.

More about Kelly: Fugue/Natural 20s/Schwa player. Runs her own consulting business, Vox Siren. On stage since birth. Lives for the audience. Unabashedly loves attention.

Photo by Gene Buonaccorsi — www.eugenebuonaccorsi.com

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