Kristen spent 4 years as Mulan at Walt Disney World, 3 years as an Entertainment Host for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, and 5+ years in therapy to recover from both of those jobs. She has half a million followers on TikTok (@notkahnjunior) because she can find anyone’s birthday on the internet. It’s hard to explain. She promises it’s cool.
Sarah Spencer is an artist, educator, and CHIRP DJ currently based in Chicago. As Io the Alien (@iothealien), Sarah creates weird art quilts and mixed-media textile compositions inspired by street art, contemporary music, and the spirit of nonconformity. Her work has been featured in print and in galleries across the US. Sarah is originally from Vancouver, Canada, where she spent her time as a corporate drone by day, and a comedian and dancer by night. A shapeshifter, Sarah is uncomfortable describing herself with nouns, as they rarely fit for long.
Meagan McNeal is a powerhouse singer, songwriter and recording artist from Chicago, Illinois. She is well versed in the genres of jazz, soul and R& B. Known for her diverse range and soulful voice, she attracted attention on the local circuit and received international acclaim with the release of her debut album entitled “Mindset” in 2014. Gracing the stage of NBC’s “The Voice” in 2017, Meagan’s radiating vocals landed her on the team of Grammy Award-winning artist Jennifer Hudson. Those experiences have broadened the scope of her potential and it has furthered her music career.
Meagan has refined her talents throughout the years and shaped her signature style. Described as an embodiment of love; her music effortlessly transcends boundaries and spreads messages of love, peace, righteousness and truth. Meagan continuously strives for improvement and positive change. Seated at the core of her artistry is the slogan, “Do It Afraid” which serves as a reminder to reexamine our relationship with fear and do what we are called to do even if we’re afraid.
Michael A. Van Kerckhove
Michael A. Van Kerckhove is a native Detroiter and long-time Chicagoan. His writing has appeared in Belt Magazine, Entropy, Freeze Ray Poetry, and March X-ness, among other publications. He has told stories in other fine Chicago storytelling events including Essay Fiesta, I Know this Much is True, Is This a Thing?, Mortified, You're Being Ridiculous, and many more. For that "describe yourself in three fictional characters" game, he's gone with Luke Skywalker, Edward Scissorhands, and Ally McBeal. But would now like to also acknowledge his inner Ted Lasso and Mrs. Maisel. Or maybe he's just sad those shows are over. This too shall...pass. Learn more at MichaelVanKerckhove.com and follow him at @mvankerckhove (Twitter & Instagram) and his neglected TikTok @genxscorpio.
Stirling McLaughlin is an award-winning writer and director. His comedy has been praised as "Impossibly balanced between endearing and horrifying" while his horror writing has been called "super-fun and funny" with "lots of laugh out loud moments." His debut feature COLD WAR was the closing night film at the 22nd LA Comedy Festival and the opening night film of the 2018 Midwest Independent Film Festival. Stirling currently lives in Evanston, IL with his wife and two adorable children. In short, Stirling McLaughlin is a fancy, fancy man. Possibly too fancy. Maybe he should tone it down with the fanciness.
C. Russell Price
C. RUSSELL PRICE is originally from Glade Spring, Virginia, but now lives in Chicago. They are a Lambda Fellow in Poetry, a Ragdale Fellow, a Windy City Times 30 Under 30 honoree, an essayist, and a poet. They are the author of a chapbook, Tonight, We Fuck the Trailer Park Out of Each Other (Sibling Rivalry Press) and the full length collection oh, you thought this was a date?!: Apocalypse Poems (Northwestern University Press). Their current projects are Bisquick: Seance Poems and I Don’t Need a Mood Ring; I’ve Got a Face (a memoir). They are on the editorial and curatorial boards for the Ragdale Foundation, Story Studio Chicago, and The Anarchist Review of Books.