Custom programs available upon request.
Contact via the contact link at the top of this page.
Lets Build a Story
Using improvisational theater techniques, Susan Marie guides the audience to create and develop characters, setting, conflict, and plot right before their eyes. In essence, we all become authors on the spot - and learn in the process how to create a complete story from our own imagination. (Even more powerful when combined with Susan Maries classroom workshops in Creative Writing and/or Improvisational Acting.)
Dressed in Scottish costume (either highland kilt, lowland aboyne), Susan Marie tells legends and folk tales of Scotland and Ireland. As a finale, she demonstrates a highland fling or Scottish step dance. Optionally she can teach a simple highland fling.
Ghosts and Goblins
Experiencing, confronting, and conquering fear is the theme of these entertaining legends and adventures.
How did Turtle get cracks on his back? Why do Zebra and Skunk have stripes? What misadventure gave Whale its baleen? Enjoy these and other explanatory tales from many cultures that explore how our world came to be the way it is today.
Finding the Fun in a Story
A behind-the-scenes look at how to make a story come to life on stage. Children come out of this performance with educated eyes and ears; they can appreciate and articulate what works in performance art: including use of body language, imagination, emotions, and the five senses.
Through a set of folk tales and personal experiences, Susan Marie guides children to recognize bully behavior, whether physical or verbal, and learn strategies for dealing with it constructively. She also addresses group behavior that ostracizes a child. The program ends with a fable that promotes cooperation.
Here's for the Holidays!
Celebrate the gift of giving with tales of the season, drawing on Christmas, Hanukah, and Solstice traditions. Help a kid foil the schemes of the Christmas Cookie Sprinkle Snitcher, count the days of Hanukkah as the candles are lit, and find out how the Precious Herbs of Solstice conquer fear of the dark.
Dressed as a medieval lady, Susan Marie shares insights to a time and place known as the Dark Ages. She opens singing a mesmerizing traditional ballad, Twa Sisters, which speaks of the jealousy and revenge that come of loving the same knight. Next she tells The Pied Piper, by Robert Browning, set in 1376 and based on evidence inscribed on the walls of some old houses in Hamelin, Germany about the sudden disappearance of 130 children. This tragic tale of a broken promise is an effective base for discussion of Justice. Finally we learn "what women most desire" in the chivalrous tale of Sir Gawain and the Lady Ragnell.
Firsthand Accounts from the Nineteenth Century
How Rattlesnake Got His Name, by Larry Helburg. This mountain mans yarn dares to pull your unsuspecting leg while placing the trapping/trading era into an accurate and memorable historical context.
Kentucky Belle, by Constance Fenimore Woolson. A young farm wife gives her account a terrifying experience during the Civil War and how she acted for humanity in the face of destruction.
What Stumped the Bluejays, by Mark Twain. Twain describes he antics of a misguided but determined blue jay through the eyes of a retired California miner.
A collection of well crafted characters, plots, and adventures is selected for the age group at hand. Authors on tap include Mark Twain, Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickenson, Robert Browning, Robert Service, Don Marquis, Stephen Vincent Benet, Christina Rossetti, and others. Treat your students to the best a writer can offer, brought to life.
The Secrets behind Performance Art
A behind-the-scenes look at how to make a story come to life on stage. Students come out of this performance with educated eyes and ears; they can appreciate and articulate what works in performance art including use of body language, imagination, emotions, and the five senses. Teacher handout available for follow on exercises linking performance art with writing skills.
Through an uncanny pairing between world wisdom tales and personal experiences, Susan Marie demonstrates how we all win when we treat one another with respect. Humorous and poignant, pithy and memorable, these stories stay with you for the time you need them most.
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303-442-4052 Boulder, Colorado