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Smart Arts for Cool Kids

I have been teaching for 18 years and I’ve seen a LOT of cultural arts programs.
This is absolutely the best program I have ever seen!
— Shanna Broders, 5th grade teacher
Wake Forest Elementary School, Wake Forest, NC

     Susana and Timmy Abell combine their unique talents to offer dynamic and highly engaging performances centered around a repertoire of unforgettable original songs and stories.

      Their concerts include an original puppet performance that has captivated audiences around the world, as well as spellbinding storytelling, poetry and award-winning music on seven instruments.

      Silver Trout Arts has achieved a stellar reputation for presenting joyful, down-to-earth and richly varied programs appropriate for any school, festival, library or family concert series.  Susana and Timmy also offer in-depth arts residencies for schools. 

...This is what childhood should be about!
— Washington International School, Washington DC
I never knew my imagenation could do that. Thank you.
— From your friend, Eden W
I have three criteria for school programming;
It must be ENGAGING
... You knocked all three out of the park!
— Jim Emery, Chairman, Education Committee, Savannah Music Festival

"So Many Ways To Share A Story"

Write it...  Show it.... Sing it....  Tell it....

For family concert series, theaters, schools, libraries, churches and festivals, a Silver Trout performance is an enriching and highly entertaining event with more vitality and variety than any audience would expect in a single hour - puppetry, storytelling and award-winning original music played on banjo, guitar, penny whistle, hammered dulcimer and English concertina.

Every concert begins with a couple of songs, usually something familiar and engaging to set the audience in motion and at least one of Timmy's original songs, sometimes more thought provoking, sometimes more playful and always selected to suit the audience at hand.

                                                                                       "The Gardener" is a ten-minute European-style puppet fable, a story without words featuring original music played on Timmy's uniquely outfitted hammered dulcimer (complete with wood-block, cymbal, drum and triangle). This simple story presents a classic struggle between good and evil, ending with a magical surprise and suggesting a simple moral. Audiences of all ages and in many cultures have enjoyed Susana's original puppet production for over 20 years. 

"Quick" is a shy, Spanish-speaking sloth from South America who generally needs a young translator from the audience in order to become part of the show. He has learned a few English words by practicing with a rare alphabet song, so he can hold his own if necessary. One thing is for sure, "Quick" is mightily intrigued with the mechanics of the the English concertina.

Of course Timmy's "puppets" have to get into the act. His ever popular dancing man is as animated as ever, getting better at the "break-dance" part of his routine every season. This viable percussion instrument leads the way into a wildly fun and playful "sit-down square dance" where every member of the audience joins in the fun.

Silver Trout's concert repertoire of songs and stories, is selected for appropriateness to the age at hand, whether it be pre-schoolers, 6th graders, families with grandparents or any combination thereof. School concerts are best focused at K-2 and 3-5.

Susana has written a number of children's stories, notably "The Girl Who Cried Diamonds", which have made their way into Timmy's storytelling repertoire. In the Silver Trout 3-5 programs Susana addresses the students as an author, with Timmy playing the part of her imagination as she writes, occasionally interrupting the story to describe the writing process and reminding the students of the necessary elements of a well-constructed story.

There is a special moment in each concert when the audience is encouraged to listen to a simple melody, played on the Bb Penny Whistle, all with eyes closed, drifting to the quietude of an inner silence which is the source of all imagination. It is an amazing and magical silence which reminds listeners of something of themselves sometimes forgotten.

Silver Trout concerts are generally concluded with an uplifting folk song to encourage group singing and to honor our traditions, something familiar and uniting, played purposefully to enliven an appreciation for simplicity and its precious place in our lives.

“The whole show was beautifully written and perfectly presented.
It had everything!”
— Craig Fuller, ESL Lead Teacher
Pickett Elementary School, Lexington, NC
“These two amazing artists have created an excitement beautiful to see among our students, our faculty and our parents.”
— Diane Adams, Principal
Providence Spring Elementary School, Charlotte, NC
“A Class Act”
— Marie Reidesel, Music Teacher
Moore County Schools, Pinehurst, NC
“I was thrilled at how well the children responded!
Your blend of music, storytelling and puppetry flowed effortlessly
and had a tremendous impact on our students.”
— Lisa Winslow, Executive Director
Arts of the Albemarle, Elizabeth City, NC
“.... a once in a lifetime experience!”
— Beth Harding, 2nd Grade Teacher
H B Sugg Elementary School

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