(photo: Jon Snyder)

Pop-Up Magazine’s fall issue wrapped up its first-ever three-night run at San Francisco’s Curran Theater.

This is a big year for the media show that originated in San Francisco. Not only has it expanded to three nights instead of one, it will also have its first international show in Toronto.

Pop-Up Magazine can be hard to describe to someone who’s never seen the show before. This is because all the stories are kept a secret until the show starts. Then, after it’s over, not a single part of the show is made available again.

It also uses every sort of media available. In the three shows I’ve been to, there were videos, live musical performances, spoken-word, and live illustration, just to name a few. As senior producer Anita Badejo put it, “...it's kind of like a concert, a play, a podcast, a comedy show, a magazine, and a movie all wrapped into one. If you like any one of those things, you will like our show."

The past issues I’ve seen often lean towards more emotional and sad stories — not necessarily a bad thing if, like me, you’re not afraid to cry in the dark surrounded by strangers. And while the Fall issue still delivered some audible tears to the audience, the sadder stories were more evenly dispersed, and always had a light-hearted story immediately after it.

This issue’s highlights started when I was handed the program, which included a cookie with instructions on the wrapper not to eat it...yet.

Other highlights included drunk-dialing customer service lines on the back of alcohol bottles, pondering the morality of yelling at your Alexa device, a leather-wearing vegan, and the history of the thirst trap.

Pop-Up Magazine tours several times a year, and is always worth a visit.

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