Don't Tell My Mother!

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Don't Tell My Mother!
Genre Comedy, Storytelling
Date of premiere October, 2011
Location Los Angeles
Creative team
Executive Producer & Host Nikki Levy
Producer Jake Webb
{{{creatortitle3}}} Hamish
Official website

Don’t Tell My Mother! is a monthly live-storytelling event where writers and performers from film and television share true stories they’d never want their mothers to know. The show was co-created by the show's host, Nikki Levy, and executive producer Lizzie Czerner. The show is performed in Los Angeles, but has also been staged in New York and Chicago. The first show was in Los Angeles in October 2011. Past performers include Traci Lords, Laraine Newman, Justin Halpern, and Mary Lynn Rajskub.

About the show[edit]

Don’t Tell My Mother! was created in 2011 by film producer Nikki Levy and Lizzie Czerner, the artistic director of the Bang Comedy Theatre. In October 2011, they launched the first show in the lobby of the Bang Comedy Theatre, with a cast of unknown performers. The show gained in popularity, and in 2012 it was covered by The Huffington Post[1][2] and the Los Angeles Times.[3]

Nikki works with comics, actors and award-winning screenwriters to share honest, funny, and poignant true stories that they wouldn’t want their own mothers to know. This process, dubbed “creative therapy” by film producer Lynda Obst, allows each performer to craft their story into a 10-12 minute piece to be read on stage. Nikki’s mother, Judi Levy, makes frequent appearance in person or via Skype.

Don’t Tell My Mother! has a podcast featuring past performers; the podcast is produced by Joe Slepski.


Executive Producers: Hamish Tildesley, Jake Webb

Bandleader: Abby Posner

Production team: David Bornstein, Valarie Phillips, Mary Colleran, Bryce Fishman, Bart Gold, Lauren Gural, Emily Kirk, Julie Neumark, Jared Noble, Alexandra Zelle Rettman, Patrick Skelly, Andy Wagner

Photographers: Megan Hiles, Lowell Hiles


There is a different cast of storytellers for each show—sometimes with returning guests.


October 13
Wendy Hammers (The Sopranos, Curb Your Enthusiasm)
Evan Susser (What's Going On? with Mike Mitchell
Stirling Gardner (You're Thinking of Someone Else)
Cornell Womack (Night of the Living Dead: Darkest Dawn, The Newsroom)
Claire Titelman
Nikki Levy
November 10
Lauren Weedman
Aaron Mendelsohn (Air Bud, Secret Diary of an American Cheerleader)
Josh Weiner (Code Monkeys, Manswers)
Susan McMartin (Two and a Half Men)
Debbie Jhoon (The Inbetweeners)
Adam Shapiro
Nikki Levy


January 12
Erin Foley (Chelsea Lately, Curb Your Enthusiasm)
Claire Titelman
Suzanne Whang
Greg Levine (Arrested Development)
Leah Hanes (Modern Love Essays)
Nikki Levy
February 9
Jill Benjamin (Community, My Name Is Earl)
Melinda Hill, Reno 911!, Sarah Silverman Program
Jen Kober (Curb Your Enthusiasm, Anger Management)
Carlos Kotkin (Please God Let It Be Herpes)
Nelson Ascencio
Mark Miller (The Huffington Post)
Nikki Levy
March 15
Drew Droege
Jessica Golden (The Adam Carolla Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live!)
John Grady[disambiguation needed]
Patrick Hamilton (The Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo)
Margot Leitman
Debbie Jhoon (The Inbetweeners)
Nikki Levy
May 10 (Mother's Day Show)
Mary Birdsong
Shelagh Ratner
Mara Shapshay (The Huffington Post, Junk American Princess)
Jen Kober (Curb Your Enthusiasm)
Nikki Levy
June 7 (Performed at Comedy Central Stage)
Cornell Womack (Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, State of Play)
Claire Titelman
Jen Kober (American Reunion)
Nikki Levy
June 28 (Father's Day Show)
Ryan Knighton
Amanda Marks (The Hangover, WALL-E)
Tom Lenk
Ari Shaffir
Nikki Levy
July 19
Gary & Larry Lane (Jack & Jill, Hollywood to Dollywood)
Jack Plotnick
David Dean Bottrell
Jen Kober (The Mindy Project)
Nikki Levy
September 13
Laraine Newman
Tracee Ellis Ross
Dave Ross
Jackie Kashian
Margot Leitman, Moth GrandSLAM Championship (Stevie TV, Late Night with Conan O'Brien)
Tom O’Connor (Doctors)
Nikki Levy
October 11
Jason Stuart
Cindy Chupack
Betty Goldstein (The Moth)
Jen Kober (Happy Endings
Nikki Levy
November 29
Lizz Winstead
Kate McKinnon
Chris Gethard
Jen Kober (Treme)
Nikki Levy


January 24
Diane Neal
Baron Vaughn
Annabelle Gurwitch
Hasan Minhaj
Claire Titelman
Nikki Levy
February 28
Mary Lynn Rajskub
Barry Rothbart
Alison Becker
Teddy Margas (Blind Dinner Party)
Hasan Minhaj (Failosophy)
Nikki Levy
April 11
Ron Morehouse (The Amazing Spider-Man, She's Living for This)
Arden Myrin (Orange Is the New Black, Psych)
Adam Shapiro (1600 Penn)
Jackie Kashian (Conan)
Jen Kirkman (Chelsea Lately)
Nikki Levy
May 9
Nancy Lee Grahn
Davy Rothbart (Found Magazine)
Tom Lenk (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Argo)
Diane Neal (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit)
Jen Kober (The Mindy Project)
Nikki Levy
June 20
Traci Lords
Steve Agee
Grant Cotter (Rated R for Radical)
Lynda Obst (Hot in Cleveland)
James Adomian
Nikki Levy


  1. ^ Bartolone, Tony (7 June 2012). "Everybody's Talking About Don't Tell My Mother". Huffington Post. 
  2. ^ Steely, Jon (17 June 2013). "There Are Things Traci Lords Doesn't Want Her Mother to Know". Huffington Post. 
  3. ^ Wetherbe, Jamie (19 July 2012). "'Don't Tell My Mother,' but ...". Los Angeles Times. 

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  1. "Featured Entertainer: Nikki Levy." Science and Entertainment Exchange, 1 August 2012.
  2. Bartolone, Tony. "Everybody's Talking About Don't Tell My Mother." The Huffington Post, 7 June 2012.
  3. "Don’t Tell My Mother! Some Funny Sh*t You Won’t Wanna Keep Quiet About.", 28 April 2012.
  4. Lustick, Adam. "Embarrassing Family Stories, Expertly Told, Take Center Stage in L.A. Show." Jewcy, 5 June 2012.
  5. Wetherbe, Jamie. "'Don't Tell My Mother,' but ...". Los Angeles Times, 19 July 2012.
  6. Nelson, Cori Clark. "Don't Tell My Mother!" Los Angeles I'm Yours, 16 July 2012.
  7. Ziemba, Christine. "Five Questions: Meet Nikki Levy of the Live Storytelling Show 'Don't Tell My Mother.'" LAist, 10 September 2012.
  8. Torok, Ryan. "Q&A with Nikki Levy." Jewish Journal, 27 September 2012.
  9. Webb, Jake. "Don’t Tell My Mama: Reviewed[permanent dead link]." WeHo News, 18 October 2012.
  10. "Comedy Listings for Nov. 23-29." New York Times, 22 November 2012.
  11. Sass, Megan. "Tell Everyone About Don’t Tell My Mother!" Heeb Magazine, 11 December 2012.
  12. Ziemba, Christine. "Pencil This In." LAist, 24 January 2013.
  13. Taylor, Leah. "The Flavorpill Guide to the Week’s Top 10 LA Events." Flavorwire, 25 February 2013.
  14. Steely, Jon. "There Are Things Traci Lords Doesn't Want Her Mother to Know." Huffington Post, 17 June 2013.
  15. Goldstein, Gregg. "Art or Commerce? Some Execs Balance Both." Variety, 13 July 2013.