Join award-winning queer writer and comedian Michelle Tomko as she explores the personalities of Atlantic City as told in their own words.
In 2019, Michelle Tomko was honored to be awarded a fellowship with Images and Voices of Hope. Under the guidance of IVOH’s coach, Pulitzer Prize winner Jacqui Banaszynski, she was trained in a technique called “restorative journalism”. The project she produced was based on Anna Deavere Smith’s acclaimed show “Notes From The Field”. Like Smith, through interviews, volunteering, and attending community events, information for the production was obtained. Tomko interviewed eleven diverse residents and performs their interviews as a one-woman show.
“Yo Eleven” is a scripted performance that contains both improvisation and quotes from hours of interviews with numerous members of the Atlantic City community: a famous singer, a person in recovery, a Stockton student, a yogi, and a pillar of the community who was raised here in Atlantic City when the North and South sides of town were racially divided, just to name a few.
She elected to entitle the show “Yo Eleven”, after the craps term: as a bettor announces “yo eleven” at the table so not to confuse their wager on eleven with a similarly sounding bet on the seven, this production seeks to differentiate the people of this gambling town from its problems and tumultuous leading industry.
Everyone has a story. This piece contains eleven of them.
Directed by Heidi Mae. Written by Michelle Tomko, with the valued help of her interviewees.
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