Hailed a “cultural phenomenon” by Newsweek and celebrated by This American Life, Entertainment Weekly, Time, Wired, The AV Club, The Today Show (twice), and beyond, Mortified celebrates stories revealed through the strange and extraordinary things we created as kids.
Witness adults sharing their most embarrassing childhood artifacts (journals, letters, poems, lyrics, plays, home movies, art) with others, in order to reveal stories about their lives. Hear grown men and women confront their past with tales of their first kiss, first puff, worst prom, fights with mom, life at bible camp, worst hand job, best mall job, and reasons they deserved to marry Jon Bon Jovi.
These readings capture just how wrong-headed we can be
back when we were teenagers.”– This American Life
The largest & longest-running project of its kind, there are lots of ways to enjoy Mortified:
STAGE. Mortified Live is the heart of what we do– a grassroots storytelling event where adults share their childhood writings/art/media in front of total strangers.
FILM. Mortified Nation is an independent documentary that captures Mortified events across the country. Available on Netflix, iTunes & beyond.
PODCAST. A weekly podcast produced in partnership with PRX and Radiotopia.
BOOKS. There are two Mortified anthologies published with Simon & Schuster.
TV. The Mortified Sessions is an offbeat interview series that ran for 2 seasons on Sundance TV, where artists and innovators shared the childhood mementos that shaped who they became.
WEB. Getmortified.com is where fans can find out upcoming events, join our mailing list, or watch our videos.
Origin & Mission
Mortified began curating material in 2002 when the discovery of an unsent teenage love letter led to an email asking people if they knew anyone who wanted to share their childhood writings on stage. That email went viral and soon, responses poured in from strangers near and far. Over a decade later, what started with a single letter transformed into a movement that included a range of participants (ad execs, architects, stand-ups, salesmen, writers, receptionists, actors, and attorneys) excited to “share the shame” from LA to DC to Amsterdam. We encourage people everywhere– even those with no interest in appearing on stage– to unearth the strange stuff they created as kids and share them with at least one person. You’d be surprised what you discover in the process.
There are a million stories buried in the pages of people’s lives.
Our mission is to help people find them.
FUN FACT! Kids who were born when Mortified began are now old enough to be keeping their own adolescent diaries.
“Unbearably intimate… completely funny!” – The AV Club
Student Body Government:
Mortified DC & Baltimore: Caryn Sykes, Adam Ruben, Jennifer Clark
Mortified Chicago:Shay DeGrandis, Annette Ferrara, Victoria Rodriguez
Places Where People Have Delightful Accents
Mortified Amsterdam (Lief Dagboek):Jessica Villerius, Remco Garcia
Mortified Guadalajara: Stefy Garcia
Mortified Sweden (Skambryan): Linda Backlund, Lotta Lewandowska
Press & Praise
(for Mortified stage shows, books, TV, podcast or film)
“A Cultural Phenomenon!”– Newsweek
“Enlightening!” – Esquire
“Captivating!” – Entertainment Weekly
“Excruciatingly funny!” – Marie Claire
“Funny… a cathartic experience.”– TimeOut London
“Some of the juiciest real life tragedies!” – TimeOut NY
“Comic genius!” – LAist.com
“Funny and horrifying” – USA Today’s Pop Candy
“Embarrassing, hilarious and just plain wrong” – Bust Magazine
“Riveting!” – Jane Magazine
“Wildly entertaining!” – Instinct Magazine
“A litany of mortifying moments” – LA Times Magazine
“Spreading the new gospel of awkward all over the land.” – Daily Candy
“Self-deprecation taken to a whole new level” – New York Press
“Go laugh at how marginally better your life is than theirs.” – Gawker
“Heartbreakingly hilarious tales of personal woe & social catastrophe!” – Flavorpill NY
“Never laughed so hard!” – Los Angeles Confidential
“Genuinely entertaining, but also subversively profound and surprisingly moving.” – Washington Post
“Comedy gold… funny, touching, and intensely relatable… (a) celebration of the maelstrom of emotions, careful posturing, and naked vulnerability that make up adolescence.”– Wired
“Funny… inspiring” – LA Weekly
“Everyone who had a childhood needs to see Mortified Nation.” – Huffington Post
“Why would anyone ever volunteer to do something so humiliating? As it turns out, there are lots of answers.”– TIME
“I love this”– USA Today’s Pop Candy
“Spills your deepest darkest teenage secrets”– The Guardian
“You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll wince!”– GOOD Magazine
“Remarkable”– Los Angeles Magazine
“Hilarious… like giving your teen self a big old hug.” – Rookie Magazine
Named 1 of “10 podcasts that will change your life in a single commute” – Food & Wine