The Red Umbrella Project was founded by Audacia Ray on the belief that storytelling is a building block of movement building and solidarity. People who have spent time in the sex industries know all too well the social and legal stigmas that prevent us from being treated with the dignity and respect we deserve. While researchers, the media, and myriad others fill up page after page with stories about the sex business, the voices of sex workers are consistently denied and erased.
Everyone has a story, and the people who are best equipped to tell the stories of people in the sex trade are the people who have personal experiences in the industry.
The Red Umbrella Project has several elements:
- The Red Umbrella Diaries is a monthly storytelling series in New York, where people whoâ€™ve tangled with the sex industry tell personal stories about the complications that arise when you mix sex and money. The event takes place on the first Thursday of every month at Happy Ending, 302 Broome Street between Forsyth and Eldridge. Doors at 7 pm, stories from 8-10.
21 and up, always FREE.
- The Red Umbrella Diaries Blog Carnival is a way for people who can’t attend the events in New York to share their stories, or for people who are too shy to share their stories onstage. Every month, host Audacia Ray selects a piece from the carnival and reads it at the event.
- Podcast: Recordings of stories told by performers at the monthly series, plus occasional guest stories. The audio podcast will debut in mid-July. You can watch the more than 50 episodes of the video podcast I produced for Sex Worker Literati, an event formerly co-hosted by Audacia, here.
- Coming soon, Audacia will be leading storytelling workshops for community based organizations.