Allow me to introduce myself...
Gillman here, a.k.a. The Stand-Up Chameleon. Energy, wit, music,
and wisdom are my stock-in-trade. More than 25 years in the business
of speaking and performing have given me an enormous amount of material
on which to draw as I customize an engaging program of comedy, music,
and oratory for your event.
can enliven and enlighten any group, meeting, or gathering, and
mine is based on a foundation of beneficence, hope, and a belief
in the enduring power of the human spirit.
With performances for groups large or
small, of all age ranges, Jackson incorporates comedy, drama, music,
dance, mime, and sign language into his own intimate style of theatre.
Jackson believes that humor can enliven and enlighten any group,
meeting, or gathering, and his is based on a foundation of beneficence,
hope, and a belief in the enduring power of the human spirit. Whether
for a professional group meeting or school assembly, nightclub audience
or small group, Jackson's performances are always delightful, magical,
inspiring, spellbinding, and thoroughly enjoyable. Talk to Jackson,
and together you can develop a performance program that will be
perfect for your next conference, meeting, banquet, or special event.
for Professional/Adult Audiences
In his rollicking revue of song parodies, no musical form is safe
or sacred with the Stand-Up Chameleon's disorderly conduct. In
fact, it's all folked up, not to mention blues'd, country western'd,
heavy metal'd, and rocked out! Special guests include the Lounge
Lizard, the Plain White Rapper, Slimmer Pickins, Maestro, and
Jackson's other altered egos in this inspired evening of foolishness
"Almost impromptu in format, Gillman's program encouraged
and received a great deal of willing participation. His charming
and informal style makes the performance lively and fun."
Portland Press Herald
Dad's Eye View - from twinkle-in-the-eye stage, to the baby's
For anyone who has helped raise a child, Jackson will have you
laughing and sighing in recognition of the challenges and delights
of baby-rearing in this endearing comedy/music revue.
"In his casual, extemporaneous-seeming style, Jackson
captivated his audience with his new act… Interspersed throughout
his engaging patter are songs Jackson has either written or collected
to sing to his daughter or illuminate the parental condition…very
sweet…funny stuff…not to be missed."
Bar Harbor Times
Jackson musically trips along the rutty road to enlightenment
with many an insightful detour to view the spills along the way.
SwamiRamaYogiBoobooSuchaWindbag and Jackson's other altered egos
promise to warm the chakras of your heart and rattle your funnybone.
"Gillman's sharp-edged satire has audience howling...
With all the jibing and poking fun, one quickly realizes that
it takes one to know one. Gillman is able to affectively land
his gentle punches right where it feels good because he knows
Portland Press Herald
Jackson careens along the roller-coaster ride of love -- from
the dizzying heights, to the plummeting dips, and all the derailments
along the way to happily ever after.
"Gillman is no fool on love and he leaves no romance
unsung. From schoolboy puppy love to downeast adulation, his approach
is quick-witted, intelligent, and tasteful.
Bar Harbor Times
Evening of Maine Humor
Come hear the Lobster Trap Rap and other wicked good downeast
stories. Original, interactive, and in good taste, drawn from
a decade of summer comedy performances.
"Gillman is funny, he's genuine, and he's got the tact
of a tightrope walker. Who else sings comedy about the silly antics
of tourists to a packed room of tourists?...he's a hell of a showman."
The Bar Harbor Times
for Educational & Family Audiences
in the Garden
Fun-filled science theatre, awarded Most Educational at the MOFGA
Common Ground Fair.
"Not only was 'Riot in the Garden' educational, it was
a delightful mix of comedy, music, and stories that delighted
people of all ages."
Susan Pierce, Special Events Director, Maine Organic Farmers &
Doodlebugs, spiders, ants and other crawlies are featured in this
"Jackson's skills as a musician and teacher highlight
the program from beginning to end! His mixture of humor, sensitivity,
and educational content made him a perfect addition here at the
Marilyn Solvay, Director of Education and Public Programs, Children's
Museum of Maine
Nature in action, story and song.
"The presentation is a delight for all ages, but is so
especially for children. Jackson's presentation is gentle, accurate
in wildlife information, and nicely varied with a mixture of songs
and stories with some audience participation."
- Ruth Grierson, Nature author, and columnist for The Bar Harbor
A rich tapestry of the colors, sounds, and smells in a heartwarming,
story and song-filled celebration of the season. "His
sense of creative dramatics makes him the best storyteller I've
ever had the pleasure to listen to... He creates an air of enthusiasm
Deborah Freitas, reviewing for the Council of Outdoor Educators
Man Who Planted Hope
An inspiring account of reforestation in Provence, adapted from
the story by Jean Giono.
"Your poignant piece would be an ideal addition to any
Earth Day celebration or classroom discussion of the fragile nature
of the environment."
Andrea Shotkin, Director of Communications, North American Association
of Environmental Education
Tall tales and songs from Maine's woods and waters.
"Here is powerful description and adventure, whimsy an
inch thick, and a foggy aura of mystery and ancient sea lore.
Together they make for an engrossing experience."
John Stansfield, reviewing for the National Storytelling Journal
Mime and stories for the family, airborne exploits and other childhood
flights of fancy.
"Jackson is truly a very unique performer...one who is
as adept and engaging with a group of children as he is with adults.
Further, he can turn a broom into more things and dreams than
you can, well...shake a broomstick at!"
Ed Rice, reviewing for Maine Public Broadcast Network
Magic of Rudyard Kipling: Just So
The classic Just So Stories are brought to life through Jackson's
intimate theatrical style and a score of lively characterizations.
"Jackson's enthusiasm and delight infuses these stories from
beginning to end. He is very entertaining while remaining true
to the stories as Kipling wrote them -- further testimony to the
timeless quality of these tales."
Cynthia Ortiz, reviewing for the national School Library Journal
Lively, interactive songs and stories to move and groove with,
featuring the title story by Ruth Lercher Bornstein. Program performed
with sign language.
"Jackson IS the Dancing Man."
author Ruth Lercher Bornstein
"The use of sign language is integral to the show's presentation...a
lovely aspect of the performance that lends to the sense of dance."
Laurie Schrieber, reviewing for the Bar Harbor Times
and the Gift of Many Colors
Stories of friendship performed with sign language.
"Jackson is a versatile and personable artist with enlightening
messages told in unique and upbeat ways. All of the children and
their parents were enthralled by the quiet elegance of his stories.
I was truly amazed with the fluidity of his communication - spoken,
signed and portrayed through his movement."
Carol Stevens, National Registry of Interpreters with the Deaf
"Excellent presentation! Kept everyone's attention with
his wonderful stories. His use of sign language is a highlight!
Chris Rosinski, sign interpreter for Charlestown NH schools
Heartwarming celebrations of the seasons, holidays and the human
Program performed with sign language.
"Jackson's talent as a mime creates a spell that will
keep you and your children laughing and deeply moved at the same
time. His use of sign language adds another dimension to the action.
We presented the show last year, and it was such a hit we had
to repeat it so more people could experience Jackson's amazing
Arnold Greenberg, impresario of the Left Bank Cafe
An intense one-man drama dealing with substance abuse within a
family, mixing humor with the realities of life. Targeted for
adults, but also appropriate for middle school ages and up. Designed
to be easily incorporated into awareness programs.
A selection of shorter comic sketches dealing with self-esteem,
peer pressure, experimentation, and promoting healthy lifestyle
choices. Mime, music, and participation, along with Jackson's
altered egos, take you for a lighter-side look at the prevention
for Speakers & Other Performers
First 15 Seconds
First impressions count. Hook 'em or lose 'em.
The first few seconds can either intrigue or alienate an audience.
There are lots of options for starting a program. Workshop participants
will share tried and true methods, and we'll explore new and different
ways to engage an audience. Jackson has performed for the whole
gamut - blind, deaf, toddling, senile, incarcerated, and drunk.
Each group presents its own challenges. Consistently establishing
successful rapport with audiences is what makes his job exciting.
Take a look at how those First 15 Seconds can help make that happen.
UCOs, UOs & PAIs
Unidentified Crawling Objects, Under-chaperoned Overexuberants,
and PA Interruptions
Technical disasters, stray children, flickering lights, fire drills,
you name it. It all happens. Some of these performance curve balls
can be prevented, others ignored, and still others simply need
to be dealt with. Jackson offers workshop tips and exercises to
better prepare you for handling all these Great Unexpectations.
Jackson has been pitched many curves in his performing career.
He's been hit by some, struck out at others, he's walked, he's
fouled, and he's deftly slammed some back -- but he's always learning.
Learn along with him.
Your Own Critic
In this field, we often serve as our own director. Are you too
hard on yourself sometimes? Not hard enough? Jackson will share
tips and disciplines that will enable you to hone your craft,
strengthen your repertoire, and broaden your performing horizons.
Yet you'll proceed gently, so you'll enjoy the challenges and
the growing process. By constructively processing inner and outer
feedback, Jackson has developed methods for becoming a keener
self-critic, and a continually improving performer.
Language & Storytelling
Jackson's introduction to the beauty of sign language in performance.
Many performers like to incorporate signing in their presentations,
and this can be very effective. Jackson is well respected by the
deaf for his several sign-interpreted shows. In this workshop,
he'll discuss how to use signing responsibly, and you'll explore
this bilingual (verbal and visual) approach to storytelling in
a sign-along workshop.
= mc+ (Event Equals Emcee, Plus)
Being the Host or Hostess with the Most or Mostest
Sometimes you'll find yourself cast as the "glue" that
holds a show together. Other times, you simply have to introduce
the next performer. Each is an important role that should be approached
responsibly. Jackson will share guidelines, tips, and exercises
that will enable you to be as supportive and effective as you
can be in the roll of emcee. Being a host or hostess is always
a challenging role. The better one gets at it, the better for
Landscaping/Interior Decorating Your Story
How clearly do your see your own stories' physical settings? How
well are you able to create the imaginary "stage set"
to help your listeners visualize the supporting landscape and
actions? Jackson offers concrete exercises to assist tellers in
transferring, by gesture, their internal landscapes to the stage.
people are saying about Jackson ...
"Gillman is a masterly storyteller" able to "carve
out entire street scenes with single gestures and the fewest of
words. Everything about him -- his body, his voice, his choice
of movements -- has a breathtaking economy that lets the simplicity
of the story speak for itself. He has a quietly demanding presence."
Christian Science Monitor
"All in all, the incredible scope of Mr. Gillman's talents,
the love of nature and Mt. Desert Island that permeates his routines,
and the warmth of his relationship with the audience make an evening
with Jackson well worthwhile."
Bar Harbor Times
"No garden variety performer."
Maine Sunday Telegram
"Jackson Gillman is a very funny fellow... a zany kind
of comic mutant -- what you'd get if you worked up a mold for
an entertainer that was one part mime and actor, one part stand-up
comedian, and one part sheer storyteller."
Maine Public Broadcasting
"Your hour-long musical comedy routine was very well
received by MADA conventioneers. Audience reaction was great,
and you even managed to get some to participate in your routine
-- not an easy accomplishment with our group. Your humor was a
very good cap to the first day of our convention. Some were even
heard to repeat portions of your routine the next day, generating
another round of laughter."
Thomas T. Brown, Jr., Executive Vice-President,Maine Automobile
Dealers Association, Inc.
"Jackson is a perennial favorite at the Common Ground
Country Fair, both he and his material have grown during the fair's
21 year history. His consummate skills and warmth as an emcee
ensure that the programs he hosts are a hit. No one has a chance
to get tired of Jackson's material because it is fresh every year.
Not only was "Riot in the Garden" educational, it was
a wonderful participatory mix of comedy, music, and stories that
delighted children of all ages. Our participants, who are career
farmers, really enjoyed the customized version. Jackson added
material about cranberry, potato, and apple farmers, details we've
come to expect from him. As 'The Stand-Up Chameleon' Jackson can
be relied on to do his part to make any event an unqualified success."
Susan Pierce, Special Events Director, Maine Organic Farmers and
"The entertainment that you provided for us was 'right on
the mark.' Your many characters, funny stories, quirky skits,
and musical spoofs really helped to 'lighten us up' after a long
day of work. Engaging the audience was attention getting and quite
lively. I especially appreciated the way you customized your program
to address our requirements; the final song about the Internet
was hysterical. I must say your title of 'The Stand-Up Chameleon'
is most appropriate."
Karen K. Keefe, Organization Development & Education Manager,