The Moth and PRX Launch “Grown,” A New Podcast with True Stories About What It Means to Grow Up
“Grown” is Co-hosted by Moth Storytellers Aleeza Kazmi and Fonzo Lacayo
The acclaimed nonprofit storytelling organization The Moth and public media organization PRX today launched “Grown,” a new podcast featuring stories about what it means to grow up. “Grown” is a podcast about the journey of the in-between: the nebulous, the liminal, and the just plain weird time between those awkward teenage years and full-on adulthood.
Audiences ages 16 and up are invited to listen to “Grown” for true stories about the challenges and joys of growing up — because no matter how old you are, you’re never fully grown. The show is co-hosted by Moth storytellers and The Moth’s Education Program graduates Aleeza Kazmi (age 25) and Alfonso “Fonzo” Lacayo (age 25). Kazmi and Lacayo will guide listeners through Moth stories — true, and told live — of first crushes, culture and identity, secrets, mental health, and more, while also reflecting and sharing their own personal stories of navigating adulthood, such as post-college jobs and moving out of their parents’ houses for the first time. “Grown” will also feature on-the-street interviews and audio diaries from young voices who are going through it all, too.
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Episodes of “Grown” will be released every other Wednesday through May 3, available on-demand across all major podcast platforms, including Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music, Spotify, Overcast, and PocketCasts. Named one of the most anticipated new podcasts of 2023 by “Vulture,” “Lifehacker,” and “Forbes,” the first two episodes are available today via the “Grown” podcast feed, including stories of complicated school dances and expectations as well as navigating mental health, and loss.
In addition to serving as co-host of “Grown,” Kazmi has served as a digital manager for the Center for Reproductive Rights and her personal work has been featured in “Teen Vogue” and in The Moth’s NYT-bestselling book of stories, “Occasional Magic.” Lacayo graduated as a theater major at the DreamYard Preparatory School in the Bronx, and has also served as a teaching assistant for The Moth.
“Working on ‘Grown’ has been a dream come true,” says co-host Aleeza Kazmi. “As an adolescent, The Moth provided me with the tools to hone my own voice and empowered me to share my stories with the world. I hope ‘Grown’ serves as a source of inspiration for other young people to do the same.”
Co-host Fonzo Lacayo adds, “Bringing ‘Grown’ to life with The Moth and Aleeza has been such a full circle experience. I never would have imagined that getting on that stage in high school would have led me here. We’ve worked so hard on ‘Grown’, and I can’t wait for people to hear the stories and hopefully relate to them in ways they never expected.”
The Moth and PRX also bring audiences the cornerstone public radio program “The Moth Radio Hour,” heard on hundreds of public media stations nationwide, as well as “The Moth Podcast.” The Moth and PRX are also collaborators on “The Confessional with Nadia Bolz-Weber” podcast, launched in 2020.
“We began working on this new podcast format over three years ago, because we believed that by elevating true stories that centered on the unique and often complicated perspectives of young people, we could inspire a new generation of storytellers while also giving our faithful listeners a bit of nostalgia,” says Catherine Burns, Artistic Director of The Moth. “‘Grown’ is a podcast for everyone, no matter your age, because deep down, we’re all still figuring it out.”
Grown: Search and Rescue: Feeling lost and getting found on Apple Podcasts
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“The Moth delivers some of the best storytelling in the world, cutting to the heart of what it means to be human.” said Jason Saldanha, Chief of Business Development and Content at PRX. “PRX is a proud partner of The Moth on ‘The Moth Radio Hour,’ and we’re thrilled to now help to bring audiences ‘Grown,’ which is full of the creativity and complexity that Moth fans cherish.”
For more about The Moth, visit themoth.org.
For more about PRX, visit PRX.org.
About The Moth
The Moth is an acclaimed nonprofit organization dedicated to the art and craft of storytelling. For 25 years, The Moth has presented over 50,000 stories, told live and without notes to standing-room-only crowds worldwide. The Moth conducts eight ongoing programs: The Moth Mainstage, which tours internationally, has featured stories by Elizabeth Gilbert, Hasan Minhaj, Kathleen Turner, Malcolm Gladwell, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, John Turturro, Molly Ringwald, Boots Riley, Krista Tippett, Damon Young, Mike Birbiglia, Rosanne Cash, Danyel Smith and Tig Notaro, as well as an astronaut, a pickpocket, a hotdog eating champion and hundreds more; The Moth StorySLAM program, which conducts open mic storytelling competitions in 28 cities: 25 in the US plus Melbourne, AU and London, UK; The Moth Community Program, which offers storytelling workshops and performance opportunities to adults who are too often overlooked by the mainstream media; The Moth Education Program, which brings the thrill of personal storytelling to high schools and colleges in New York, and educators around the world; The Moth Global Community Program, which develops and elevates true, personal stories from extraordinary individuals in the global south; “The Moth Podcast” — the 2020 Webby People’s Voice Award Winner for Best Podcast Series — which is downloaded 100 million times a year; MothWorks, which uses the essential elements of Moth storytelling as an empathetic communication tool; and the Peabody Award-winning “The Moth Radio Hour” which, produced by Jay Allison at Atlantic Public Media and presented by PRX, The Public Radio Exchange, airs weekly on over 572 public radio stations nationwide. To date, The Moth has published four critically acclaimed books: “The New York Times” Best Seller “The Moth: 50 True Stories” (Hachette Books, September 2013), “All These Wonders: True Stories About Facing the Unknown” (Crown Archetype, March 2017) — described as “wonderful” by NYT’s Michiko Kakutani and New York Times Best Sellers “Occasional Magic: True Stories of Defying the Impossible” (Crown Archetype, March 2019), and “How to Tell a Story: The Essential Guide to Memorable Storytelling from The Moth” (Crown Archetype, April 2022). The Moth has released its first card deck, “A Game or Storytelling”(Clarkson-Potter). On February 8, 2023, The Moth will release its second podcast, “Grown.” Listen to the trailer now available on all streaming platforms. Learn more at themoth.org.
PRX is a non-profit public media company specializing in audio journalism and storytelling. PRX serves independent producers and organizations by helping them connect to their most engaged, supportive audiences. One of the world’s leading podcast publishers, PRX works in partnership with TED, PBS, the Smithsonian, Futuro Media, GBH, Religion of Sports, and more. PRX is also home to Radiotopia, known as one of the most creative and successful podcast networks. In addition, PRX distributes trusted public radio programming to hundreds of stations nationwide, including “The World,” “The Moth Radio Hour,” “This American Life,” “Snap Judgment,” “Reveal,” “The Takeaway,” and “Latino USA.” PRX programs have been recognized by the Peabody Awards, the duPont-Columbia Awards, the IDA Documentary Awards, and the Pulitzer Prizes. In 2022, Futuro Media and PRX won a Pulitzer Prize.