Make GigSalad better, upgrade your browser!
You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser in order for GigSalad to operate properly.
We recommend that you use Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.
Silly Goose & Val

Silly Goose & Val

16 reviews
Top Performer

About Silly Goose & Val

Award winning artist, Valerie Leonhart Smalkin and Silly Goose present energetic song-filled performances, populated with a magical array of puppets, bold-voice talents, and contagious dances that will surely get you and your little ones up, moving, and laughing together. A recipient of 2015 and 2016 Maryland State Arts Council Grants for theatre performance and non-classical composition, Val's 40 minutes of music, puppets, ventriloquism, dancing, singing, and 100% audience participation will delight the child with and in you!

"The Maryland Zoo loves Silly Goose & Val." - Colleen Stein, Events & Community Relations Manager




She's the Best!

By Diamond J. on April 27, 2015

We booked Val for a "Take Your Kids to Work" Day event in April 2015.

She was supremely awesome! An absolute professional at the highest degree.

All of the parents were absolutely amazed when our normally shy children glued to her. Our general manager thought it was impossible for her son to detach from her. However, almost ten minutes into Val's performance he went to the front row!

She is absolutely amazing and we're ready to book her again!

Hired as: Children's Music, Children's Party Entertainment

Awesome..awesome...did I say..Awesome!

By Daneilia P. on November 21, 2013

Val provided the entertainment for my daughter's 1st birthday. I know what your thinking...really...a 12 month old but the kids at the party ranged in ages 3 to 7. My guest are STILL talking about how much fun they had...adults and kids! Val not only put on a great show but she really participated and assisted in every aspect of the party. Thanks so much for helping to make such a memorable day for my family!

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Party Entertainment, Puppet Show

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

And your family was the best! Grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins all ready to have fun. I'm still laughing about the Dino Dance Chorus lead by Granddad! Love meeting you all!

Val did a program at library and 2 adults and 2 children stopped by the next day to say how impressed they were with the silly goose program--Raves

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Music

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

Oooo...raves! Love that!


By Ellen K. on July 8, 2013

For our daycare/summer camp, Val kept EVERY child's attention throughout the entire hour she was entertaining us. She was silly, fun, excellent with the kids, and even involved the teachers. The teachers were just as entertained as the children. We HIGHLY recommend silly goose and val to anyone that is looking for great, quality child entertainment!

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Music, Puppet Show

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

Aww - thanks! I had a great time with you as well!


Silly Goose & Val Were a Hit!

By Makeba S. B. on April 21, 2013

We couldn't have asked for a better act to set the tone for Family Entertainment at the 11th Annual Annapolis Book Festival. With their hand-clapping, cheerful songs, Silly Goose & Val had the audience dancing, laughing, and singing from beginning to end!

Consider yourself lucky to have Silly Goose & Val perform at your next event. Val is a gifted entertainer who is sure to please!

Makeba B.
2013 Annapolis Book Festival Entertainment Chair

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Music, Puppet Show, Singer/Songwriter

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

Oh! Oh! Thank nice!

Fantastic Show

By Celia B. on October 16, 2012

We booked Val for my son's 10th birthday party. He loves ventriloquism and Val brought a dummy just for him to see and use. She even gave him some tips about using puppets with ventriloquism. Val brought many other puppets too and each child got to participate in a puppet show. It was a great time! The children loved her show and so did the parents. I would definitely recommend Val.

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

Thank you Celia! Your boys are super!

Spectacular Show!

By Mr. L. on July 31, 2012

Not only was the Silly Goose & Val show enjoyed by the children of Antioch Child Care Center, but the staff as well! Vals excitment and genuine love for children was exemplified through her performance and made for a memorable experience! Our children are still raving about the "silly lady with the puppets". THANK YOU VAL!

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

You are sooo welcome! I had a great morning with you!

Pure Energized Fun and Completely Brilliant!

By Lisa D. on July 13, 2012

Silly Goose & Val's performance at our Family Fun Night was pure energized fun and completely brilliant! Parents and children were up to dance, sing, and play along. I received numerous positive comments and will be happy to invite Silly Goose & Val back!

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Music

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

Thank you! i enjoyed your families as well!

We LOVE Val!!!

By Danny C. on June 7, 2012

Silly Goose & Val performed as part of our church's concert series last season and it was an OUTSTANDING event! Both Val and Silly Goose brought us outrageous fun, madcap fun, riotous laughter, zany antics, and contagious energy! We were all on our feet, couldn't sit down...couldn't make a frown. Lively songs and smiles galore...we love Val!

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Music, Comedy Show, Musical Comedy Act, Puppet Show, Singer/Songwriter

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

I blush, sir!

Silly Goose & Val not only held a successful event at our Church, but the quick response in getting questions answered, booking the event and confirming the date went very smoothly. The age range at our Church family event went from birth thru adult and we all had a FABULOUS TIME. Many of the kids would like to see Silly Goose & Val once again.

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Music, Children's Party Entertainment, Puppet Show, Singer/Songwriter

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

Aw! Thank you. I had a great time at your church as well! I'll come back anytime. Oh! I have a great Christmas program!

Great entertainment!

By Kathy C. on July 15, 2011

We scheduled Val for several of BCPL branches this spring. She is a delight to work with and presents a very entertaining program. Her original songs get the audience up and moving. Silly Goose, and her other furry and feathered friends, add additional charm to Val's program. This program is a winner!

Hired as: Ventriloquist, Children's Music

Barnyard Dance was Terrific!

By Cheryl U. on July 6, 2011

On May 16, fifty-eight lucky children and adults had the privilege of watching as Val Smalkin and Silly Goose performed. Ms. Smalkin wowed the audience with her songs, puppets, dances and ventriloquism. This interactive program had the kids on their feet and the adults laughing. An absolutely charming program!

my kid loves val and silly goose.

By Maya N. on July 5, 2011

val is a sincere performer and gives her best irrespective of the number of people in the crowd. she has always been patient with my little girl and indulged her with silly goose antics.

would highly recommend.

Awesome show!

By Melissa H. on July 1, 2011

Val and Silly Goose were loved by all the children at our preschool! They had a great time dancing and singing along. Even our smallest students really enjoyed the entertainment.

Hired as: Children's Party Entertainment

Silly Goose & The Zoo!

By Stephanie D. on July 1, 2011

I have had the pleasure to work with Silly Goose & Val on a number of occasions over the past several years, and I would absolutely recommend her show to any organization! She is energetic, great with kids, friendly, easy to work with and knows how to draw a crowd!
My only regret..not having a reason to book her even more often! she's great!! Come see her at the Zoo this fall/spring!
Stephanie Drummond
Events & Community Relations Manager
MD Zoo in Baltimore

Hired as: Children's Party Entertainment, Puppet Show

Silly Goose and Val were a joy to work with. Very professional and easy to work with. The show was a delight for children and their families. Hope to have them back in Gaithersburg again.

Response from Silly Goose & Val:

Nansie just wrote me: "You are wonderful to work with. I do think your prices are fair. I guess I should have marked them all as above and beyond, but now I don’t know how to change it. I hope it is still a good review. That’s what I was trying to do.

No problem, Nansie, 4.8 is good enough for me!

Booking Info

  • Typical Gig: 30 - 50 minutes
  • Fee: $300-2000
  • Insurance: $1,000,000 - Commercial General Liability Coverage: Each Occurrence $1,000,000 General Aggregate (Other than Products–Completed Operations) $3,000,000 Products-Completed Operations Aggregate $1,000,000 Legal Liability to Participants $1,000,000 Damage to Premises Rented to You $300,000 Medical Expense (other than participants) $5,000 Medical Payments for Participants $5,000
  • Languages: English, French


In a children's show audience members will laugh, sing, and dance along with Silly Goose & Val and their assorted friends: Rufus, the Reluctant dragon; the Pink Flamingo Can-Can line; Cyleena, the Sloth; Tingalayo, the Donkey. Val's fresh material, high level of energy, and musicality will delight young and old alike. As one first grade student in Cape May, NJ said, "This was the funnest day!"

In an adult show audience members will laugh, sing, and dance along with Val and her more sophisticated friends: Lola, Katerina Collageenyva, the Pink CanCan Flamingos, and more! As one Rotary Club Member said, "This was the funnest night!"

Additional Booking Notes

Val brings her Bose sound equipment with her which can handle a room of 20 or an amphi-theatre of 600. She asks only that her equipment be shaded because electronics and the hot sun to not get along very well. Thank you.


Valerie Leonhart Smalkin, ventriloquist, musician, composer, and writer was born February 11, 1950 in Baltimore, Maryland. Her parents, aunts, uncles, sisters, and brothers (6 children in all) were all artistically inclined. All family members played the piano, the father trombone, one brother flute, one brother bass, and several siblings guitar. Sunday nights were jammin’ at the Leonharts’.

Though always studying and playing piano, Valerie received a BA in Philosophy cum laude from Goucher College in 1971. Being unemployable as a philosopher, she headed off to Berklee College of Music in Boston to pursue her first love…music. However, the life of a pop musician in the early 70’s turned out to be fraught with danger, so Valerie sought an easier, calmer path…Law School. She graduated, again, cum laude, from the University of Maryland School of Law in 1977, and practiced law until she met and married her husband, The Honorable Frederic N. Smalkin.

After giving birth to Frederic N.C. Smalkin in 1982 and Katherine Chancellor Smalkin, in 1984 Valerie discovered her love of pre-school children. Eventually her two loves, music and children, came together, in the form of Val & Pam KinderSingers, writers, performers, and co-producers of John “Kinderman” Taylor’s Emmy award winning Children’s Television program, It’s Kindertime, that aired on WMAR ABC TV-2 in the 90’s.

Since that time Valerie composed and performed, "Chadwick Sings: A Little Bay Music," the musical version of Priscilla Cummings' International Literacy Award winning book, "Chadwick the Chesapeake Crab"; published "The Early Childhood Curriculum" with Karen Rupprecht; and composed "Babel: The Oratorio", "Signs: An Epiphany Musical", and "Darrell: The Draggin' Dragon". She now tours with her puppets, comedy, and music, as Silly Goose & Val.

Valerie’s book, "Springtime Dance" (Small Kin Music 2014) received a Gold Medal for Books with Music from the Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards; her CD "A Gentle Halloween" received a Parents’ Choice Fun Stuff Award in 2014; and in 2015 the Maryland State Arts Council awarded her a grant for “Individual Solo Performance – Non-Classical Music."

Past Booked Events

Nov 16, 2016 Holiday Party (Other)

The team providing the talent:

Valerie Leonhart Smalkin

Ventriolquist, Singer

Set List

Shakin’ Hands at the Musical Zoo –
Theodore E. Bear & Val learn and teach how to shake hands.
Beautiful Zoo –
Children become the animals in this guessing game song.
Hop Silly Goose -
Val’s signature puppet, Silly Goose, leads an action song hopping, jumping,
nodding, and pecking on Val’s head, ending only when Silly Goose finally
goes to sleep.
Polliwog –
Children become polliwogs, starting like atadpole and then growing legs
and arms to become a frog.
The Slip –
Children and parents dance along - ”Keep your feet on the ground and turn
around and around/ Make a funny face, but don’t you make a sound.”
The Seed Song –
Silly Goose wakes up to sing her version of the Seed Song,mischievously,
as usual.
Birdie –
Children make birds with their hands as they “Shake the Birdie, Wake up
the Birdie.”
Can Can –
Four parent volunteers man the Pink Flamingo Marionettes for the Can-Can
based upon Jacques Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld.
Rufus, The Reluctant Dragon –
Rufus, awakened by the noise of the Cancan, stirs, but tries to hide from the children who frighten him, but don’t worry… he gets over it.
Dino Dance –
Parents form the back up singers, and children make a dance line to do
the Dino Dance.
Jack Horner –
Silly Goose butchers this simple song but finally gets the right words.
Cyleena, the Three –Toed Sloth –
Cyleena, who channels Billie Holiday in her bluesie song, laments that she
is the only three-toed sloth, or at least the only one she can see.
Touch the Ground –
Silly Goose & Val say goodbye with this last action song.

What Ever Lola Wants
A Good Man is Hard to Find
Big Spender
You Gotta Have Skin
Other Jazz standards...

Influences & Inspiration

Shari Lewis (of course!), Martha Raye, Ella Fitzgerald, Carol Burnett, Oscar Peterson, Mr. Rogers, Sesame Street, Della Reese, Jay Leonhart, and Patti Page!

Setup Requirements

A stage with steps is preferable, but not required.

Water, please!


Contact Silly Goose & Val

Get a Free Quote

You might also like:

Ernie Fields, The Total Entertainer


Motown Group

Washington, DC

The comedy of Scott Capri and friends



Levittown, PA

Chris Campbell Music for Kids Show

Hang on to your hats! The positive, organic sound and fun ventriloquism from this…

Children's Party Entertainment

Richmond, VA

Lucky Stars Puppets

Lucky Stars Puppets is a one woman puppet company that uses puppets to entertain,…

Puppet Show

Potomac, MD