The pandemic disrupted many facets of our daily lives, but, for the most part, publications were able to continue reaching their audiences, both online and on newsstands. That wasn’t the case for Pop-Up Magazine, the groundbreaking live show that brings journalism to stages in L.A., New York, Oakland, and Washington D.C.
But even with in-person performances kiboshed for upward of a year, Pop-Up Magazine innovated.
“We didn’t know when we could be back onstage,” says co-founder and EIC Doug McGray. “But when we do perform onstage, we tell stories in so many different ways: Sound, animation, music, photography, illustration, film, and more. So we decided, let’s keep doing that, let’s keep making stuff in different ways.”
The team released an “Issue in the Box,” an at-home experience full of books and other objects, and also launched an audio show called Field Guide, which Spotify picked as one of the best podcasts of the summer.
In November, Pop-Up Magazine finally makes its return to the stage, with a show at L.A.’s Theater at Ace Hotel on November 14.
Of curating the magazine’s Fall Issue, McGray says, “We’ve always gathered a mix of funny stories and thought-provoking stories. Intimate stories and stories about the wider world. Timeless stories and topical stories. Our Fall Issue reflects that. None of the Fall Issue’s stories are about the pandemic, exactly. But we think people will find the show feels right for right now. It will be a meaningful, memorable, fun night out.”
Contributors to the fall show include Emmy-winning TV writer Cord Jefferson (Watchmen, Succession, Master of None, The Good Place); comedian Sudi Green (L.A. only); writers Ingrid Rojas Contreras (debut novel Fruit of the Drunken Tree, named a NYT Editors Choice), Jon Mooallem (The New York Times Magazine, author of Wild Ones and This is Chance!), and Ian Urbina (Pulitzer Prize–winner, New York Times bestselling author, founder of The Outlaw Ocean project, New Yorker, New York Times); radio producer Shima Oliaee (Dolly Parton’s America, Radiolab); filmmaker Ben-Alex Dupris (director, Sweetheart Dancers); and comedian Sudi Green (Saturday Night Live, Shrill); author and artist Chanel Miller (NYT bestselling memoir Know My Name) won’t be at the L.A. event, but will be at the D.C. and New York shows.
“There’s nothing like a live show,” says McGray. “I can’t wait to hear that first big laugh or that pin-drop silence in a suspenseful moment.”
Tickets are on sale now at popupmagazine.com.
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