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Email: jxsong@comcast.net
Phone: 508-295-0886
For grades: programs are adjusted for any grade level
Fees for live visit: blockbooking fees start at $375+
Funding: Has been on the NOFA touring artist roster for 3 decades

 

Interactive songs and stories »

Terrific! You held the attention of 150+ children and adults for over an hour - without any hi-tech stuff! Loved the way you wove the stories & songs together with movements & laughter.
--- Beth Wiseman, Loudon County VA Library




Sparkling with energy, wit and whimsy, "Stand-Up Chameleon" Jackson Gillman draws on his many talents as storyteller, songsmith, mime and sign language artist to engage audiences of all ages in his unique style of personal theater. He has developed a score of different assembly programs over his 34 year career. While the themes vary, they are all highly visual and interactive.  Many are nature-oriented and reflect his ecology background from the College of the Atlantic. Thematic programs include:  Riot in the Garden - fun-filled farm science, awarded Most Educational at the MOFGA Common Ground Fair.  Nature in Action, Story and Song - an educational romp on the wild and crazy side of natural science.  BUGS! - doodlebugs, spiders, ants and other crawlies are featured in this low-life revue.  Once Upon a Tide - educational songs and stories from the sandy beach to the briny deep.  On a Wing and a Song - a birds-eye view of the cycle of seasons. Songs & Stories for a Small Planet - environmental awareness come to life.  The Magic of Rudyard Kipling: Just So - the classic "Just So Stories" brought to life (video available).  The Man Who Planted Hope - inspiring environmental activism.  Levity in Motion mime and stories for the family, airborne exploits and other childhood flights of fancy. A Family Cabaret - an intergenerational look at daily rituals, wake-up to bedtime, from all perspectives.  Moon Crazy - captivating songs and stories to take you far away and pilot you happily home.  The Dancing Man (with ASL) - lively, interactive songs and stories to move and groove with.  Harlequin and the Gift of Many Colors - stories of friendship performed with sign language. Swamp Cake and Cattails - assembly program about anti-bullying and social acceptance, fancifully disguised as a prehistoric comedy with dinosaurs and dragons. Autumn Wonders - a rich tapestry of the colors, sounds and smells in a heartwarming, story and song-filled celebration of the season. Halloween Silly Willies - songs and stories to tickle your funny-bone without scaring your pants off. Winter Wonders (or Holiday Huzzah if Christmas and/or Chanukah is included) - heartwarming celebrations of the seasons, holidays and the human spirit. Spring Into Action and Song - celebrates spring in all of its song-filled wonder.  Hard Knocks has been presented hundreds of times and unfailingly engages even the toughest audiences. It is an intense, insightful journey into the lives of Scrapper, a feisty adolescent; Angela, his light-hearted deaf sister; and Frank their widower father, as they all struggle to cope with the family's sudden misfortune and Frank's increasing alcoholism. This healing story is gripping in its reality, touching in its humanity, and hopeful in its conclusion. The program is designed to be followed by a discussion period with small groups.  The Perfect High, my other health awareness offering, consists of shorter comic sketches each with clear messages dealing with self-esteem, peer pressure, experimentation, and a "lighter-side" look at the prevention of addictions. Prior to any reference of alcohol and drugs, our common habits concerning breakfast, sugar, caffeine, and tobacco are healthfully satarized. This show does not require a discussion period and can be presented independently. It is most often used as either a fun ice-breaker for an awareness day or as an upbeat closing.


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Jackson has been performing as the Stand-Up Chameleon for over thirty years. He has been featured at many regional and national festivals, and has thrice been Teller-in-Residence at the International Storytelling Center. References galore can be found on the family/educational page of his web site.  Perhaps his best sales pitch is that the majority of his work comes from repeat booking. 

While generally known for his comedy and interactive performances, a more serious side is reflected in programs such as Hard Knocks and The Man who Planted Hope.

Annually since 2000, he devotes a week portraying Rudyard-in-Residence at Kipling's historic VT home. He also hosts an annual Springboards for Stories workshop there, assisting others in developing and crafting their own personal stories.  

He has either keynoted, coached or presented workshops at most all of the 30 annual New England Storytelling Conference, Sharing the Fire.  He has similarly been an annual presenter at nearly every Children's Music Network Conference since 1992. 


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