‘A Band Of Mothers’

‘A Band Of Mothers’

Comics find the funny side of new parenthood


Shayna Ferm says she is a member of the biggest club in the world. She’s a mom.

Sharing some of the universal — and hilarious — truths about motherhood started as a way for Ferm and longtime friend Tracey Tee to support each other. Both had had big-city careers as comedians, writers and actors, then both found themselves back in Denver, married with children.

“We were both in the throes of new parenthood, and we were miserable,” Ferm says, laughing. “We felt like we needed to get out of the house and just have a glass of wine.”

“The Pump and Dump Show” — if you’re a mom, you’ll get the title — started as a free evening of stand-up comedy at a bar in Denver. The friends were amazed but not surprised to see moms coming in groups of 12 or 15 and laughing until they cried.

That was in 2012. The show has been touring since 2014 — Ferm’s kids are now 6 and 7; Tee’s is 7 — and the audiences are bigger and more varied. Ferm says they see lots of older moms and adult daughters who have a whole new understanding of each other — and a few dads sometimes brave the experience. With original songs that have titles like “If Daddies Made Milk” and “I Wanna Come Back as a Dad” and games like “Cervix Says” and “The Most [Messed] Up Thing My Kid Has Done,” some male audacity is required.

That’s not to say the evening is about bashing men; it’s not. It’s about being part of a “band of mothers,” Ferm says, and “realizing that as isolating as motherhood is, you’re not alone. Just being surrounded by your tribe for one night, not on a computer, is such a cathartic and validating experience.”

It can also be deeply emotional. Ferm says she and Tee meet the audience after the show, take pictures, talk, laugh, cry and hug. She’s always surprised how many moms are having their first night away from home post-partum.

“They come out, laugh it all out, then they’ve got to go back and start over,” she says. “It’s those first months and years [after a baby] when you really, really need this show.”

That said, Ferm knows she and Tee may someday — although not anytime soon — age out of their on-stage personas.

“But we would really love to see ‘The Pump and Dump’ live on beyond us,” she says. “In every city, it should be the thing you go and do when you have a baby.”



‘The Pump and Dump Show 2018

Parentally Incorrect Tour’

WHEN — 7 p.m. Sept. 22

WHERE — Walton Arts Center in Fayetteville

COST — $30

INFO — 443-5600

BONUS — Celebrating the release of a new book, this tour also features a segment where audience members can submit their own parenting horror stories — “completely unscripted, 100 percent authentic and unbelievably hysterical.”

Categories: Theater