Programs and Rates
Why me? Why should I be YOUR storyteller? I want to make sure I am the right guy for you, so here's a little about me. My background is varied, and experience wide. I began telling tales for free but people told me I was good and I should charge, so I did. And now this is how I make my living and support my family.
If you want someone upbeat, someone flexible to work with, someone who can easily identify with kids and adults, then we are off to a good start. I have always written, and some of my work has been published. I have a book coming coming out in early 2018 called "Under the Oaken Bough," published by Parkhurst Brothers. I studied photography at college and that was my career for a long time. I ran budget accommodation and meals establishments working for the Youth Hostel Association (a kind of b&b with evening meals for students and families). And I have worked for corporate America. I have recorded four storytelling CDs, an audio of Gilgamesh, and over six audio books. If you want someone who brings a lot to the table, then I am your man!
I have been likened to a traveling one-man show with my humour (I'm British!), physical antics, comedy and pathos. I work hard on my craft, on the voices and sound effects I use to the point where you will lose yourself in the story as you might in a great movie - no matter your age.
I will travel anywhere you need and at most times, when I am available. I cover the whole of New England and have been to other states, such as Arizona, Indiana and Missouri, to perform and teach my craft.
Looking for something special like a package, or have a budget to work with? Please call about pricing. Each performance is unique in its time, place and requirements and I would like to accommodate you. Below are some guidelines.
*Rural libraries and schools with tight budgets, please call for special rates.
Because each and every performance is unique, each venue is different, and your needs differ to others, please call to discuss what you want, so I can make a personal quotation for you.
My rates vary from $350 - $1,500 depending on your needs and time I am with you.
Single performances can be between 40-60 minutes in length.
Want a full day? In any environment, I can present performances and/or workshops.
Looking for full week or month-long residences? I have you covered.
I provide workshops and residencies for any organization.
Additional evening performances are often added.
Program Themes (a selection):
I have a large and always growing repertoire of tales to pull from. Sometimes it is nice to gather a number of stories together, like friends, for a program that might follow a theme. The following are only suggestions that work. As I said, I can create a program For You. Here are some ideas you might wish to use or be inspired by:
A World of Tales: Great stories from all over the world including the often requested How Ananzi Gave Us Stories. Tales of love, long journeys, shape shifting girls battling dragons are often included. Great family entertainment for the home, library, camp, or school. All ages.
Nature: These tales come from American, African, European and other World sources. They include the story of beaver's race with turtle (with permission from Joseph Bruchac), how Raven brought light to humans, why the salmon swim out to sea, why bear's tail is short, tales of trees, and more. All ages.
Fright Night: These tales are stories that will chill listeners to the bone. But don't worry - I provide age specific programs! A Fright Night can be suitable for children aged 4 and up, but works REALLY well for older listeners (11 plus). Programs can be family friendly, or broken into 'acts' or parts: I do half a presentation for younger kids and then half a presentation for older kids. This allows me to cater to both younger children and older children, and by having a break where the younger ones leave (snacks, games etc) and can I continue telling more chilling tales to the remaining adults and older children, or move to a different location. I also do programs for adults with longer, way more chilling, and in some cases slightly disturbing stories (like Poe's Black Cat). Let me know what your chill factor is!
For a list of stories I tell, visit my blog post Halloween
Winter Tales: stories from all over the world that celebrate winter and the coming of spring. Great for the winter holidays.
Treasure: Stories of treasure found in unlikely places, pirates, and a Greek myth can all found in this entertaining program for those 4 years old and up.
Celtic Tales: Stories from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, told by a Briton! It doesn't get much more authentic than that!
Loves Labors, Loves Lost: It's not Shakespeare! Sometimes the happy ever after takes hard work, sometimes it comes naturally, and sadly, sometimes it is lost. In these tales, a princess needs to get married but cannot choose to whom (or what!); Henry has to overcome a great test to marry his true love; a burly Scot falls in love with and marries one of the fay (one of the good people); and we will hear of a misunderstanding between a happy couple and how they reconcile.
Where the Ravens Feed: Ravens are smart, are sometimes seen as creatures that forebode dark times, but ravens also like to play. All this is brought to the table with intimate telling of the 1st Century Anglo-Scandinavian story of Weyland Smith, bawdy tales, funny stories and darn good yarns that might leave you yearning for more. From ancient ballads told in story form to dark tales I learned in my youth, I will share stories you'll never forget.
A program of adult tales. This program is not for children. High school and older recommended.
Above are examples of programs I offer. Sometimes you might want a performance filled with ghost tales; you might want a series of creation stories, or tales from Scandinavia, Greek myths, or British tales of King Arthur. You may want water stories, animal tales, or just a number of ripping yarns for a given audience. Whatever your needs are, please let me know, but remember, the more notice I get, the better program I can offer. If there is something you definitely have in mind that is not in the above list of ideas, please talk to me in advance so I can work with you to create your own personal program at no additional cost.
*Fees for NH rural libraries can be obtained from New Hampshire State Library performers list (special reduced rates apply).
For a list of some of my past clients, and to find available grants, please visit my Creative Ground page: http://www.creativeground.org/profile/simon-brooks-0
And the NEFA website: http://www.nefa.org/
Grants through the New Hampshire Council on the Arts
I am on the New Hampshire Artists Roster as part of the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts which allows schools and other institutes to apply for grants to have me perform or do residencies. For more details, please visit: New Hampshire State Council on the Arts.
Grants through New England Foundation of the Arts (NEFA)
New England States Touring (NEST) provides support to nonprofit organizations based in New England for community-related activities by select New England performing artists from outside of the presenter's state. Any nonprofit, school, or government entity based in New England (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont) is eligible to apply for a NEST grant.
The nonprofit organization does not need to be an arts organization. An organization that does not have a federal tax identification number (such as a national historic park) may apply as long as it is part of an official government agency (such as the National Park Service).
Nonprofit organizations who are interested in bringing cultural arts programming to its community may apply for NEST funding. Examples of eligible applicants include: libraries, schools, theaters, service agencies, and arts organizations. Applicants may only receive NEST support for presenting select NEST artists.
Contact program staff with questions regarding eligibility.
* First-time applicants are encouraged to call NEFA.
Programs are tailored for YOUR needs and wishes! Addition mileage and/or travel expenses may occur.
Call for details and to discuss what I can do for you.
Or shoot me an email: simon at diamondscree dot com
Artwork by S. Aidan Brooks © 2015
Cold River Radio Show, 2015
Residency in Henniker, January 2016
Photo with permission by Mike Munhall
Where Ravens Feed
Photo by Simon Brooks, © 2016
The Poisoned Apple
Photo by Simon © 2016
Artwork by Rob Brookes © 2015