These award-winning storytellers are local Houston artists who specialize in Irish and Celtic folktales, tales from the Irish Mythological Cycles, participation stories, urban legends, ballads and much more. As integral members of the Houston storytelling community, each person offers a distinctive approach to cultural and social outreach. In addition to their myriad festival and conference performances, to document their work these storytellers teamed up with storyteller Marion Besmehn to produce “Céilí House: Tales From Celtic Lands,” a CD of selected stories.
Susan Gallagher, a Brooklyn native, grew up enamored with the traditional tales of her Irish American family. Their deep respect for the beauty of language and narratives inspired Susan to continue the tradition, especially devoted to the tales of the Mythological Cycles of Ireland. She believes that the enlightening power of stories holds the ability to heal, transform and transport, particularly in the unique connection of face-to-face speaker and listener relationships. After practicing law and performing social justice work, Susan began professional storytelling, reaching listeners in workshops, museums and festivals.
Sally Bates Goodroe, recipient of the prestigious John Henry Faulk Award for storytelling, loves telling stories to all ages, and is partial to stories from Ireland, Scotland and England. Her unique specialty in folktales has gathered crowds at museums, schools, libraries and festivals. As a librarian and researcher of variants in the development of folktales, Sally blends her talent and passion in the form of participation stories, urban legends and ghost stories. Her affinity for ballads presents itself when Sally occasionally performs alongside her husband, folksinger David Goodroe. Sally is a co-founder of the Houston Storytellers Guild.
Brian Herod promotes storytelling as a way to create a sustainable community and has helped children create their own stories by weaving together crafts and lessons of the natural world with the transcendent world of stories. His collaborations with countless organizations have brought the art of storytelling to a wide range of audiences. His solo endeavors, Stories Across the Ages and Writers in the Schools, extended Brian’s cultural reach to new audiences. In addition, Stories Across the Ages has earned him two individual artist grants from the Houston Arts Alliance.