Today we’d like to introduce you to Joseph Pagliuca.
Joseph, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I got a degree in teaching from Wheelock College in Boston. I taught preschool for 8 years. During that time, I used to tell stories to my kids. I toyed with the idea of being a storyteller for many years. I started doing it on weekends at parties and events. Soon, the demand for bookings was too great and I left teaching and became a full-time storyteller. I decided my professional name would be “Big Joe”. That was the name they gave me my 1st year teaching. We had a boy named Joe, and they called him “Little Joe” and me “Big Joe”. I figured it would be easy to remember and very catchy.
At first it was a struggle to get my name out there, but soon a lot of people knew about “Big Joe”. I am now 20 years into my storytelling career and the name of “Big Joe” has spread far and wide. I now do shows around the country, in other countries, and of course right here in MA! I do shows for big clients (such as The Boston Red Sox and “Life Is Good”), and small clients, and I tell tales anywhere a good story needs to be told!
Has it been a smooth road?
Starting out, it was hard to generate recognition and get my name out there. I did marketing on my own (cold calls, mailers etc.), and put ads in parent publications such as the Boston Parent Paper to get myself out there. It was hard because there aren’t a lot of storytellers out there, so I had to sell myself a lot more than other performers. Adding to my struggles was that I had a very limited set of business skills. I knew how to tell and write stories, but I didn’t know much about running the business side of things. I picked up a lot of information on the way, but it was a very steep learning curve for me. Had I had more business skills the road to where I am now would have been a lot smoother!
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Big Joe the Storyteller – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
I am a professional storyteller for children and adults. I do a lot of work at schools, libraries, birthday parties, camps, corporate functions, and special events. Because of my background in preschool teaching, I do a lot of work with that age group. While that is my specialty, I also have stories for all ages. I am most proud of the fact that I can create storytelling shows for pretty much any occasion. No matter what the venue is, I can have stories that are a perfect fit. My versatility is what sets me apart from my peers.
While some entertainers can only do shows for certain ages or venues, I am versatile enough to have something for everyone! What also sets me apart is my storytelling style.
At times, I tell tales the traditional way. However, for most shows (especially with younger children) I tell tales using props, puppets, and lots of audience participation.
This helps to bring my stories to life, and makes my show more fun and exciting than other storytelling presentations!
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I like the mix of cultures and communities in Boston. The city is made of all types of people and their heritage and charm comes to life in all of our different neighborhoods.
What I dislike about Boston is what I dislike about most major cities: traffic, congestion, construction, and of course a severe lack of any good parking!
- $175-$275 for Birthday shows
- $300-$600 for Schools
- $300-$800 for Special Events
- Address: 60 Sutherland Road, Brighton, MA 02135
- Website: bigjoe.com
- Phone: (617) 713-4349
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: pagliucajoe
- Facebook: facebook.com/bigjoethestoryteller
- Twitter: @bigjoestory
- Other: thebigjoeblog.wordpress.com