avery r. young
Multidisciplinary artist avery r. young is a 3Arts Award winning teaching-artist, composer and producer with work that spans the genres of music, performance, visual arts and literature. Examining and celebrating Black American history and culture, his work also focuses in the areas of social justice, equity, queer identity, misogyny and body consciousness. As a writer, this Cave Canem alum has work featured The Breakbeat Poets, Coon Bidness, to be left with the body and Make Magazine. Dubbed “sunday mornin jook joint,” his performance and work in sound design merges spiritual and secular aesthetics with dramatic and comedic sensibilities. He has performed in the Hip Hop Theater Festival, Wordstock and Lollapalooza. His latest full-length release, booker t. soltreyne: a race rekkid, features songs and other sound designed created during his artist residency with the University of Chicago's Arts and Public Life initiative. It was during this residency that he worked worked on sound design and concrete poems called "cullud sign(s)." Through voice, sound, visual art and performance, young is constantly exploring the forms in which poetry can exist. His work moves through these genres seamlessly and presents a human with multiple identities. He currently is a coach for the youth Poetry Ensemble, Rebirth and working on his first full manuscript of poems.
Tamale is a stand up comedian and interdisciplinary performer who travels internationally with her fierce eyebrows. Voted runner-up for Chicago’s Best Stand Up Comedian for The Reader, Tamale is a regular at The Laugh Factory, Zanies Comedy Clubs, and countless local and national showcases. She’s been featured in national Comedy festivals, such as the Chicago Women’s Funny Festival and international Festivals like the Dublin Lesbian Arts Festival, where she was the International Guest of Honor. A cast member of the groundbreaking R.E.A.C.H. (Risky Eclectic Artist Comedy Hour) at Second City, Tamale is an alumni of the Second City Conservatory Program. She’s also a graduate of I.O. Chicago and Annoyance Theater and created a unique improvised show incorporating the creation, presentation, and performer interpretation of tiny hats called Tiny Hat Time. She's well known in Chicago for producing the interdisciplinary comedic show, BrassChucklesComedy.
She travels the world far and wide as a comedian and gender performer, co-producing the internationally touring gender performance group, the Windy City Blenders.
She loves performing burlesque and drag, fire dancing and belly dancing, and often incorporates them into her comedy. A regular in the storytelling scene, she is currently working on another one woman show, based on her experience of finding a two-way mirror in a bathroom, documenting it in a video that went viral, and the subsequent change in the law around privacy violation that followed.
Check her out at www.TamaleRocks.com and around town as she rides (often in costumes) with her pals in Bikes and Mics!
Christopher Meister is a CHIRP DJ, actor, writer, improvisor, former slam poet, and maker of fine jellies, jams, and chutneys. Recently, Chris was last seen in the New Stages production of Mother Road at the Goodman. On TV, you may have seen Chris portraying various cops, drunks, or Dads on such shows as Chicago Fire, Sirens, Chicago PD, The Chicago Code, really anything with a Chicago in the title. He may also be seen endorsing products he never actually uses. Chris also is an award winning filmmaker with films playing in Sundance, SXSW, Hamptons International film festivals among others. Chris has been the host of "The Riff Hypnotic" on CHIRPradio.org for a little over three years. He believes his best job ever was getting pigs drunk for science.
Jenn Gibbons - Jenn Gibbons is a rower, cyclist and coach who likes starboard side, handstands, running marathons, eating hot wings (not at the same time)
and kicking cancer’s butt–one rower at a time. She is also the founder and Executive Director of Recovery on Water (ROW) a rowing team for patients and survivors of breast cancer. In the summer of 2012, Jenn rowed the 1,500 mile perimeter of Lake Michigan raising over $150,000 to buy boats and equipment for ROW.
She’s been featured Fitness Magazine, Marie Claire Magazine, Make It Better Magazine, Gapers Block, NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, CNN, WGN,WCIU, Chicago Public Radio, The Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun Times and covered in media outlets across the country via the Associated Press.
The product of nine years in San Francisco and eight years in St. Paul, Rosamund Lannin is pleasantly surprised to have lived in Chicago for over a decade. During that time, she has edited Gapers Block (rest in peace), performed stories around the city, and consumed many carne asada burritos. These days she co-hosts lady live lit show Miss Spoken, edits Story Club Magazine, and tries to write essays that make you feel things, or at the very least laugh.
The comedy of Arish Singh, with it’s unique fusion of absurdist humor and political commentary, has
been praised by many, and described by many more, as “totally not my thing.”
Singh has performed with Hasan Minhaj (The Daily Show), Kamau W. Bell (Totally Biased), Barry Rothbart and Chris Thayer. He is the comedy coordinator for the Witching Hour arts festival in Iowa City, and co-produces Chicago’s Solid (Hil)arity, a storytelling and comedy show that fundraises for activist groups and labor unions.
David is a law professor at DePaul and former law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. He makes regular appearances on WTTW’s Chicago Tonight. While studying at Yale, he was invited to perform with its improv group, the Purple Crayon. He once shook the late Vaclav Havel by one hand while the late Strom Thurmond shook him by the other. They were not late at the time. Sometimes he runs into short celebrities (Jackie Mason, Julianne Moore, Jon Stewart) or very tall ones (entire professional basketball teams), but has very little experience running into medium-sized celebrities. He has been known to stare into the middle distance.