John‘s Great Great Grandmother Meg immigrated from Ballymena north of Belfast with the magic of the fairy, and the gift of telling stories which got passed down generation after generation until it came to his mother Shelagh and then to him.
He had studied his trade with: the Second City Fire hall, University of Victoria, UCLA Musical Theatre Program and finally graduating from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in California.
Recently thrilled 200,000 people at the Vancouver Celtic Festival 2011 and St. Paddy’s day parade.
Also seen at Vancouver Island Music Festival 2010 & 2011, Surrey Children’s Festival, Vancouver Children’s Festival Outreach, Young Music Festival, Bella Coola Discovery Music Festival, Veteran of 2 Western Canada Children’s Festival Tours, headline in Canmore, Saskatoon and the Regina Children’s Festival also performing at the Vancouver International Airports Grand Opening, 2000 millenniums First Night Victoria, Make a Wish Foundation’s Corporate Fundraiser , Canada Day Celebration Sechelt, Vancouver Museum, Illuminates and Whistler Blackcomb Ltd.
John also has performed his Story’s in Zutphen & Wagenigen in the Netherlands, Wrote, Directed and Performed 2 shows in the Beach Side Theatre in the Dominican Republic and Wrote, Produced and Directed 5 shows with Critical Acclaim in Western Canada.
He’s performed 88 shows a year for the past 7 years to children, families and schools all across greater Vancouver area and the Sunshine Coast.
A whirlwind of positive infectious Irish magic, he makes even the impossible seem possible and has been telling original ancestral “Earth Wilde Story’s,” professionally for the past 25 years.
He has appeared in a multitude of forms and made himself known by many names to nearly every culture throughout time. He is perhaps best known to us now in his Celtic aspects of the untamed leaf-covered Green Man, Guardian of the Green World, but He is much older. He has worked his magic when the first humans were becoming. Our prehistoric ancestors knew him as a shape-shifting, shamanic god of the Hunt. He is painted in caves and carved everywhere, on cliffs, stones, even in the Earth Herself. Yet he is older still. In the time of the dinosaurs, the great swamps and subtropical forests of cycads, seed ferns and conifers, and later in the time of the deciduous plants and flowers, when the pollinators came and the first tiny mammals were creeping up from beneath the ground, the Green Man was the difference and diversity of life, the frenzy and ferment of evolution. But, He is much older still. He is oldest of the Ancient Ones, first born of the Goddess. At the time of First Earth, the Green Man grew in the womb of the All Mother, Anu, waiting to be born, to come forth to initiate the everlasting, unbroken Circle of Life.
by J. M. Reinbold
From far, far back, Graham’s family lineage had come from the Celtic musical magic of the fierce frolicking Pixs. They descended from the misty moors of a wee town called Bonnyrigg just south of Edinburgh Scotland, then immigrated to Canada with the gifts of the silent golden mistrals which were passed down from generation to generation until it finally found Graham.
At a wee age of 3 he began playing the flute in 1959 and the saxophone in 1968. He has studied with David Whiteley, Doug Pullen, David Branter, David Liebman, and Pat LaBarbera. Ord has attended workshops with Dave Liebman, Steve Lacy, Sam Rivers, Steve Coleman, Joe Lovano, Dave Douglas and Kenny Werner.
Major events in Graham Ord’s career have been performing at: The Knitting Factory in New York City, tours in Japan and Belgium with the Uzume Taiko Ensemble featuring Ord on Flute and electronic effects, Tenor and Soprano Sax. Amsterdam and the East Coast of Canada with the Hard Rubber Orchestra and performing in the Chicago Jazz Festival with George Lewis and the NOW Orchestra with special guests Fred Anderson, Billy Brimfield and Roscoe Mitchel. Following Chicago, NOW, with Mary Oliver and Achim Kaufmann, played at the Bimhuis in Amsterdam, the Jazz Gallery in Nickelsdorf and the Berlin Jazz Festival. In 2007 Ord moved to the Sunshine Coast and organized two annual shows with Tony Wilson, Barry Taylor and Giorgio Magnanensi. He is currently the conductor of the Creek Big Band and performs in Vancouver and the Sunshine Coast with Anagram and other highly critically acclaimed ensembles.
Graham excels in improvisational performance Jazz and has an incredibly diverse ability and innate talent to play everything from, Flutes, Penny Whistle, Tenor and Soprano Sax, Drums, Rain Forest Flute, to anything else that will make a bang, bing, pop, twirl, twit, swish, slosh, or plop. If it makes a sound, he can play it…including Beat Boxing and incredible animal noises spontaneously expound out of his mouth!
What people are saying …
“The Green Man is a truly delightful festival entity and he will lift
your heart. He is collaborative, kind, gentle, respectful, stunningly
beautiful and completely magical. It is amazing to watch him build
friendships with other performers and guests, tell stories, celebrate
the music, dance and smile, play with the kids and encourage other to
respect the earth and each other. I would highly recommend that you
invite him to your festival, wedding, birthday or garden party – you
will not be disappointed.”
-Meaghan Cursons, Associate Producer, Vancouver Island MusicFest 2010 & 2011
“The Green Man’s presence on site was pure enchantment: children were reaching up, eager to enter his world.”
-Marie-Soleil Bergeron, Festival Organizer, Surrey Children’s Festival
“The GreenMan was a huge hit with the Celtic Fest Vancouver crowd. Not only did the GreenMan entrance capacity crowds at the Kid’s Tent with his magical story-telling, but he could scarcely move down Granville Street Celtic Market for being mobbed for photo opportunities. His fantastically clad and painted 8-foot character was an amazing sight that stood out even in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. But however larger than life the character, the very best thing about the GreenMan is that the performer behind him is personable and accessible, not just a strange looking person on stilts.”
-Ross W. Powell, Director of Programming and Production
“Before I met the GreenMan I was a lost soul in this huge universe and he helped me find my spirit…”
-Sophia, age 10“ Excellent performance & interactive stories! ”- D. Waite – ESL Teacher – Calgary“ Brings delight to all those who come within his spectrum of hilarity. ”- D. Hopkins – Artistic Director: The Public Dreams Society – Vancouver
“ Energetic & filled with entertaining antics, he involves the audience in the stories which carry a gentle message. ”
- M Gillis – Royal City Record – New Westminster
“ A circus of visual & emotional stimuli … an inspiration … has the courage to do something unique & wonderful. ”
- J. Zallen – Teacher – Vancouver
“ … the children were touched by his tales and wisdom. ”
- L. Belo – Project Manager – Holland
“ Hilarious … an endearing treat that will have you giggling for days … 5 Stars … a must see. ”
- D. Bernhardt – Star Phoenix – Saskatoon