Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail Partners With Who Hijacked My Fairytale? Starring Kelly Swanson

April 19, 2023

We’ve heard the saying: “Laughter is the best medicine.” Award-winning storyteller, comedian, motivational speaker and author Kelly Swanson personifies this saying, demonstrating to audiences how effective laughter is in creating your own personal fairytale in Who Hijacked My Fairytale? Starring Kelly Swanson on April 20, 2023. In a humorous and heartfelt story, Kelly offers a fresh perspective on life, joined by her best friend, Chardonnay. The show’s Community Engagement Partner Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail also knows Chardonnay very well and welcomes ticket holders to enjoy a pre-show mini wine lesson. Talking about the excitement around this perfect “girls’ night out” (but really for all adults) show and its partnership with the downtown Appleton wine bar is Jane Oliver, co-owner of Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail and Who Hijacked My Fairytale?’s own Kelly Swanson.

Jane Oliver co-owns Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail with her husband, David Oliver. The pair met in the restaurant industry in Chicago and before opening Mondo! together in December 2017, David spent 11 years in wine distribution. Jane commented that they wanted “to share their love of wine and provide a bar experience in downtown Appleton that they felt was missing.” Jane and David offer events where guests can learn more about wine in a relaxed, nonjudgmental atmosphere which includes a free monthly wine tasting, Mondo! Matchups, their version of March Madness held annually from January through March, and Wine Camp, their series of beginner level classes designed to give guests more confidence selecting and talking about wine and more.

Before Who Hijacked My Fairytale? Starring Kelly Swanson on April 20, stop into Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail from 6:00 – 6:30 p.m. for a mini wine lesson based around the Periodic Table of Wine, a visual aid developed by owner David Oliver to help wine lovers navigate the world of wine with more confidence. This event is free for Who Hijacked My Fairytale? Starring Kelly Swanson ticket holders with community support from Community First Credit Union.

While there, enjoy a special Chardonnay flight for $15. Also available will be a special cheese and charcuterie platter that makes a great meal for one or hearty snack for 2. Normally, a la carte price would be $19, but ticket holders can enjoy it for just $15. The Chardonnay flight and special charcuterie board will be available Thursday, April 20 – Saturday, April 22.

Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail stopped their bar service through 2020 and into 2021, focusing more on retail wine as a way to keep their doors open before reopening bar service in May 2021. “Although giving up half of our revenue stream was very challenging financially, it introduced the value and quality our retail wine selection to many people who had not purchased from us before,” Jane remarked. She added, “People tend to assume our retail wines will be expensive and are pleasantly surprised when they find nearly every bottle on the shelf is $20 or less. Every bottle has been tasted and selected by David who is always looking for wine that tastes more expensive than it is.” Many people who discovered this Appleton gem during the pandemic are now loyal to the wine bar because they love the value and the wine advice that they can’t find anywhere else.

To partner with the Fox Cities P.A.C. and Who Hijacked My Fairytale? Starring Kelly Swanson was an easy decision for both Jane and David Oliver. This partnership works well for both parties with Mondo! benefitting from its close proximity to the Center by welcoming customers who are looking to do something before attending a show at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center. Supporting the arts feels natural for Jane and David since Jane is a professional artist, working a day job and the Creative Director for New Leaf Paper while David is a trained actor studying in New York City and Chicago. Both have participated in local theater in the past and are thrilled to find new ways to keep the arts as a part of their life.

David and I both believe in the power of the arts to provide an avenue of expression that can lift people up, bring communities together, provide new insights and sometimes even save lives.
Jane Oliver - Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail co-owner

Kelly Swanson wears many hats and is not only an award-winning storyteller, comedian, motivational speaker but also the author of several books. Her books include “Who Hijacked My Fairytale” for which the show is named, “The Story Formula” “The Land of If Only” and “The Affirmation Journal for Positive Thinking.” Kelly has also created the Story Impact Academy, online courses including The Persuasion Principle, designed to discover the power of personal storytelling. Her presence extends to the screen and the stage as she was a cast member of the “The Fashion Hero” TV show (Season 1) and was a featured entertainer for Holland America Cruise Lines. Currently, Kelly is an editor of the Prides Hollow Gazette where she shares stories from towns people. After traveling from coast to coast for more than 20 years as a keynote motivational speaker and storytelling expert at numerous conferences, last summer, Kelly was inducted in the National Speakers Association Hall of Fame. She is now pleased to present the one-woman show, Who Hijacked My Fairy Tale? in theaters all over the country.

With the show being based off her book, I asked Kelly how the book came about in the first place. She relayed to me, “I realized that many of us are not happy because we are hanging on to an unrealistic belief of what we think our life should be. This belief for many of us, started with the fairy tales. I decided to poke fun at all the “lessons” the fairy tale taught us and encourage people to see that not everybody is going to be a princess, and that’s okay.” Since Kelly was already a storyteller when the book came out, businesses began approaching her to speak at events. Kelly saw that people needed to laugh, be encouraged and inspired to see beyond their obstacles.

Enjoying the pure beauty of being creative and “playing” on stage, Kelly loves to express herself through her powerful stories, making people laugh. As a professional speaker, Kelly has “talking points” that she sticks to, but when it comes to theater, there’s an energy created between her and the audience that steers away from lecturing and into entertainment. Digging into her college experience where she encountered something that “hijacked her fairytale,” Kelly shares how she came back and wrote a new chapter in her story. “It’s not really just a comedy show,” Kelly commented. “You get all the feels and walk out feeling amazing, knowing that your story is not over; you can still pick up the pen and write a new chapter…This show is perfect for anybody who just needs to laugh and get a fresh perspective on life. If you’re going through something tough, then these may be the words you need to hear.” Through Who Hijacked My Fairytale? Starring Kelly Swanson, Kelly will connect with each audience member, ensuring they feel seen and heard.

To those who are going through a dark time…You are enough. You are stronger than you realize. Hope is closer than you think. And while today may be dark, there is ALWAYS the promise of the sun again.
Kelly Swanson

Commenting on the partnership with Mondo! Wine Bar & Retail, Kelly said, “Well, in case you didn’t know, my best friend, who comes to all my shows, is Chardonnay. She has a front row seat to this performance. Need I say more? What’s girls night without wine? I’m just saying!”

Laughter is a powerful tool that Kelly uses, and she sees it as a way to recognize pain points in life and strip them of their power. Kelly also allows her imperfections to motivate people, giving them the courage to embrace their own. She hopes that audience members walk away from this experience changed, leaving with “courage, hope, laughter, healing, a soul lifted and a memory with friends they won’t forget.”

Ticketholders for Who Hijacked My Fairytale? Starring Kelly Swanson are invited to stay after the show and join Kelly in the Main Lobby at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center for a mix, mingle and meet and greet. Don’t miss out as the party continues… the bar will be open after the show for you to enjoy your favorite beverage (chardonnay, perhaps?), take photos with friends and have Kelly sign your merchandise.

To learn more about the Center’s 2022-23 Season Community Engagement Partners, click the link and read more blogs about each partner throughout the season.

Written by Philomena Dorobek, Brand Storyteller
Fox Cities Performing Arts Center