Project Write Now would like to extend a heartfelt THANK YOU to our sponsors, special guests, performers, and attendees. We hoped you enjoyed the show! We certainly had a blast. We are already looking forward to CringeFest VI!
Thank you to our CringeFest V sponsors!
By sponsoring CringeFest, these individuals and businesses supported PWN’s mission of transforming individuals, organizations, and communities through writing. Since 2014, we’ve partnered with more than 75 organizations impacting more than 5,000 youth, teens, and adults.
CRY WITH LAUGHTER
The Chauhan Housley Family
Elyse & John Kehoe
The Honorable William G. Bassler
Jaspan Brothers South
The McMullan Family
Town & Country Design Studio
The Baret Family
Maria & Rob Wood
Thank you to our performers!
“Here Comes the Sun” by Kathleen McKitty Harris
Kathleen McKitty Harris is a fifth-generation native New Yorker who was transplanted as a middle schooler to the Connecticut suburbs in the early 1980s, and frantically memorized The Official Preppy Handbook to try and fit in. (Dear reader: she didn’t.) Her essays have been published in The New York Times, Longreads, Creative Nonfiction, McSweeney’s, and The Rumpus, among others. Kathleen also performs as a storyteller and has been featured on The Moth Podcast and on such stages as Joe’s Pub at The Public Theater in New York City. She also co-hosts the “What’s Your Story?” reading series in northern New Jersey, where she lives with her husband and two children. Learn more here.
“Keeping Up With Shatiera Kardashian” by Shatiera Porte’e
Shatiera Porte’e is a proud Red Bank, New Jersey, native who has been working in the mental health and education fields for almost two decades. Affectionately known as “your favorite school counselor,” Shatiera has turned her life’s adversities into empowerment lessons and now empowers others by sharing her story and the tools she used to overcome challenges. To further facilitate a space of encouragement, Shatiera has created and optimized more than a dozen initiatives for businesses/communities empowering youth, extensive experiences in various counseling capacities, corrections, emergency crisis, and psychiatric screening services. She enjoys cooking, creating new recipes, which includes finding new places to travel, and becoming an international foodie. She enjoys dancing while listening to her favorite selections of 90s music. Learn more here.
“What the Nose Knows. Or Does It?” by Anndee Hochman
Anndee Hochman is a journalist, essayist, storyteller, and teaching artist. Her column, “The Parent Trip,” appears weekly in The Philadelphia Inquirer, and her commentaries, essays and reviews have also been published in Broad Street Review, Purple Clover, on WHYY’s website, and in numerous other venues. She’s the author of Anatomies: A Novella and Stories and the essay/interview collection Everyday Acts & Small Subversions: Women Reinventing Family, Community and Home. Anndee is also a seven-time Moth Story Slam winner and recently tied for first place in Philadelphia’s Moth GrandSlam. She teaches creative nonfiction, essay-writing, memoir, and poetry to writers of all ages. Learn more here.
“Are You There God? It’s Me, Cynthia ” by Cynthia Becht
Cynthia Becht …
- Was born
- Grew up in Lincroft
- Survived grammar school, junior high, and high school
- Graduated college by the skin of her teeth
- Moved to New York City
- Waitressed in a jazz club
- Worked in an after-hours club and auditioned a lot
- Got married
- Moved back to Monmouth County
- Opened two women’s clothing stores
- Had a baby
- Survived marriage
- Got divorced
- Raised her beautiful daughter
- Work full time
- Live by the ocean with Ophie The Cat
- The End
“Meet the Etras: She Said, He Said” by Amy & Michael Etra
Amy Etra earned her BFA in industrial design/jewelry from Parsons School of Design 20 plus years ago and has been working in the fashion accessories business since. For the past 12 years, she has worked with Patricia Nash Designs and earlier has designed for fashion houses such as Andrew Marc, Kenneth Cole, and Marc Fisher. Her early years were, however, split between dance, theater, and design. She appeared in community theater productions and dance exhibitions, later shifting into costume and set design. A jewelry-making class changed her career path from the performing arts to the visual arts and she decided to focus on jewelry design instead of theater or cinema studies. But she never lost her passion for theater and movie production. At the beginning of the pandemic, Amy joined the Screenwriting Incubator with her husband, Michael. The two have won screenwriting awards for their TV pilot “Old Daddy” and are working on several other projects together.
Michael Etra has had a long career in the fashion accessories industry but his passion has always been to entertain. After years of running his own successful accessories company as well as working for many others in the industry, he wrote and sold an original screenplay to Danny Aiello’s production company over 20 years ago, which did not get produced at that time. The draw of Hollywood has been in the back of his mind ever since. At the beginning of the pandemic, he joined the Screenwriting Incubator with his wife and together they re-wrote his screenplay and started on many other new projects. They recently wrote an award-winning TV Pilot about becoming a father at an advanced age called Old Daddy—something he has intimate knowledge of as he raises his eight-year-old son together with his partner in writing and in life, Amy.
Thank you to our special guests!
Master of Ceremonies – Craig Baldo
Craig Baldo is a writer and comedian. His stand-up has been featured on Late Night with Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, and NBC’s Late Friday. Craig has warmed up dozens of TV shows, including seven seasons of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. Currently, he spends his days as a freelance copywriter penning ads for big brands out of his home office in Montclair, NJ. Learn more here.
CringeFest Band – Kül d’Sack
Kül d’Sack, featuring Chris Jannuzzi, John Lecesse, Rich Morris, and Jim Willis, gathers its diverse musical influences into a homegrown harvest of original songs and fresh takes on classic bluegrass, rock, and country. Learn more here.