Janis Mackay tells traditional Scottish tales and world stories, including Native American stories and fairy tales. Stories that include the physical or mental transformations of characters into other beings are also a favourite theme.
Janis loves telling stories to children and adults and is equally at ease with both. Her style is gentle and atmospheric, with poetry and singing often included in her performances. She is interested in storytelling with a therapeutic intent as well as the art of spontaneous storytelling.
Born in Edinburgh, Janis has been working with stories for 20 years. After training in speech and drama she performed as a storyteller, touring around different schools and communities. During her career she has also specialised in voice coaching and teaching the art and craft of storytelling. She believes very strongly in the power of storytelling to help develop confidence, variety and strength in speaking. For several years Janis also worked at the Artemis School of Speech and Drama in Sussex and at Emerson College in Sussex where she has been facilitating storytelling workshops in organisations, helping people in business to invigorate their approach to work, working relationships and creative ideas. Her past clients also include The Body Shop, Hewlett Packard, The Environment Agency, and others in the UK and abroad.
Janis is often to be found performing stories with storyteller David Campbell and is currently working with him on a programme of stories and songs from Scotland. She ran Saturday workshops at the Netherbow Theatre for children for several years and has worked in Germany and South Africa, where she performed at an international conference for storytelling in business and works with the University of Witwatersrand delivering, together with colleagues, an annual international storytelling in business conference.
Janis is a storyteller and author, winner of the Kelpies Prize 2009 with her novel - Magnus Fin and the Ocean Quest, first of a trilogy comprising Magnus Fin and the Moonlight Mission and Magnus Fin and the Selkie Secret. The winner of the Scottish Children's Book Awards with her novel 'the Accidental Time Traveller' Janis visits schools offering author, creative writing and storytelling workshop.
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Everyone is a storyteller! Find out how you can learn a few tales to share with friends or how you can become a professional.