The 2018 Ampersand LIVE contributors
Photo by Jen Au

Our Magical Intellectual Circus

Identity. Caribou. Social justice. Brass. Dogs. Climate change. Sasquatch. Hope.

More than 1,300 people joined us at the Moore Theater for Ampersand LIVE, our evening of storytelling about people and place, and there are so many unforgettable moments.

We marveled as Tomo Nakayama lit up the room with his powerful songs full of joy and love. We saw breathtaking shots of the Pacific Northwest and beyond from wildlife photographer Stephen Matera, and laughed at Donna Miscolta’s tale of a few unexpected houseguests that found their way into her attic.

With Tom Banse, we questioned what—or who—could have made the Mimas Mounds. Forterra’s Gene Duvernoy and Michelle Connor implored us to take action on climate change and think about all we have to lose as our planet warms. We opened our eyes to the possibilities of ‘design for positive change’ as Emily Anna Hagen described the role of wood in our future built environment, and we shed a tear as Jéhan Òsanyìn spoke about her most loyal canine companion.

Shall we save the orca? Shall we solve for climate change? Shall we hang on to what we love about our place?
Michelle Connor

We listened to the intricate and emotive music of The Westerlies brass quartet and sat transfixed as Zoe Scofield danced across the stage to the evocative vocals of Kevin Barrans. C. Davida Ingram shared beautiful art tackling subjects of race, gender, and social justice, and Howie Echo-Hawk found dark humor in privilege and oppression and challenged the audience to grapple with these complex issues.

David Moskowitz took us on a journey to the caribou rainforest through the voices of those who know the land best. We experienced Seattle through smell with Drew Christie’s animated short film, and looked towards a complicated future with youth poet laureate, Azura Tyabji. At the end of the night, as all the performers joined together on stage and Tomo broke into song, we celebrated once more the place we call home.


A passionate, insightful, sometimes challenging but ultimately inspiring evening.
Tomo Nakayama

Thank you so much to everyone who made Ampersand LIVE such a special and memorable evening. It was a great reminder of the power of community and the inspiration we can discover when we all come together.

Watch the full show here: