Presenting artists listed below

Dead Artists Lounge is an evening of collaborative performance art inspired by the works of deceased artists. Artists are invited to collaborate with another artist that they’ve either never worked with before, or with someone of a different artistic discipline. Each collaborative group then chooses a deceased artist’s work to take their inspiration from: This can be anything from Edgar Allan Poe (a Dead Lounge favorite) to Degas’s ballerinas to Rimsky-Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumblebee. From there they create a never seen before performance piece in any style and artistic discipline they choose. We’ve seen a wide variety of acts from shadow puppetry to live music, to aerial acrobatics. We are very excited to bring you the newest edition in the Dead series: Dead Artists Lounge: Virtual Edition!

The Presenting Artists

CHIBI: Born in Abilene, TX, Bryan “Chibi” Gaynor is living his whole life with Scoliosis, a condition dealing with the curvature of the spine. He was exposed to the art of robot dance during his High School years. Since then, he has dedicated his time on perfecting the robot, as well as learning other dance styles to further his progression. His first break was in 2007 on the hit dance show So You Think You Can Dance, where his audition piece to Christina Aguilera’s “Ain’t No Other Man” gained major exposure! He was brought back during the season finale to share his dance style and, on that same year, was featured in an episode of the Ellen DeGeneres Show. He later joined forces with two other dancers Julius “iGlide” Chisolm and Marquese “Nonstop” Scott to form RemoteKontrol, an Atlanta-based crew known for its animation style and wearing all gold. The crew got its big break when performing live on SYTYCD! The golden individuals were also featured on an episode on The Wendy Williams Show. The crewmates later brought in other amazing dancers to form the world’s hottest animation crew, Dragon House!

PATREON: patreon.com/neklesschibi. YOUTUBE: youtube.com/chibi247

INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/chibi247

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ANNETTE COQUETTE is the pint sized tease who will seize you, and then please you. She started the art of burlesque in California as the opening strip tease to a shadow cast production of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. From there, she joined a small troupe where she learned some basic dance skills. She then moved to Atlanta, where she interned and joined with The Candybox Revue. Since then, she has happily performed as a guest with many other troupes both as a solo performer and in group routines. She has appeared in several burlesque festivals around the southeast, such as the New Orleans Nerdlesque Festival in Louisiana, and the Americana Burlesque and Sideshow Festival in North Carolina. She and her partner Chibi even won the “Phenomenally Freaky” award at the first annual Savannah Burlesque Festival in Georgia. She’s known for being a fierce and versatile performer.

INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/annette.coquette

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“NIC” & “FREE”:The dynamic aerial dance duo Nicole “Nic” Mermans & Fareedah “Free” Aleem, AKA Tiny Twerk and the Salt Shaker, are self-proclaimed opposite twins! Separated at birth, these kindred spirits found each other 8 years ago and have been inseparable, tossing each other around in the air ever since! 
Nicole who has phenomenal leadership qualities and a keen eye for talent, has been teaching and performing aerial dance for over 20 years as founding member of Canopy studio in Athens, GA and D’AIR Aerial Dance in Atlanta Georgia.  The trapeze is her second home, and when she is not performing in the air, she can be found moving to the conga rhythms on the salsa dance floor.  
Fareedah is no stranger to the stage, with her bigger than life smile and infectious energy, she has performed across the globe with the band Arrested Development, with local Atlanta burlesque troupe Dames a Flame, and earned her name as the original “Salt Shaker” in Yin Yang twin’s music video “Shake it Like a Saltshaker”.
Together, Nic and Free draw in audiences with electrifying charisma, lighthearted playfulness and heart-stopping acrobatic feats of skill and strength! Careful, blink your eye and you might not be able to tell them apart, but here’s a hint…. its in the cheekbones!

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OKORIE “OKCELLO” JOHNSON is an American cellist-songwriter whose artistry integrates cello performance, live-sound-looping, improvisation, and storytelling – all culminating in original compositions that collide classical with jazz, EDM, reggae, and funk. 

His music is inspired by the exploration of African diasporic melodies and narratives and their intersection with people’s perceptions and assumptions about the classical and European nature of the cello.  As well, his work with improvisation attempts to embody the phenomenon of wordless prayer.

He is a recipient of the Alliance Theatre’s 2018 Reiser Atlanta Artists Lab grant, and a 2018 Creative Loafing Readers’ Choice winner for Best Local Jazz Act. His sophomore album Resolve was named one of ArtsATL’s top local albums of 2018. 

In 2019, he had the honor of performing at SXSW for Choose ATL and the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, performing at the Oak Hill Stage of the Atlanta Jazz Festival, opening for Grammy award winning artist Van Hunt, being a featured artist on the Story2019 festival at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville, opening for Grammy award winning recording artist Maxwell at the Cadence Bank Amphitheatre at Chastain Park, and being invited to perform in Havana, Cuba at the classical music festival Habana Classica, which coincided with the 500th birthday of that capital city.  

In 2020 Okorie has been commissioned by Flux Projects to create improvisational work entitled “Stir Crazy” directly responding to the isolation that stemmed from the COVID19 quarantines, and has collaborated with visual artist Fahamu Pecou and poet Jon Goode to create a performance art piece entitled HUE+MEN that, in response to the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, asserted through sound, imagery, and poetry the sanctity and power of Black humanity.

Furthermore, over his career, Okorie has had the opportunity to perform and/or record with India.Arie, De La Soul, and Big Boi of OutKast, amongst many others. 

Okorie describes his circuitous route to this unusual solo cello career in the following quote: “After years of putting my cello down and picking it back up, after years of deciding that the cello wasn’t financially practical, after years of thinking that my other voices were my native ones, I realized that the cello was the oldest, the most central and the most sacred part of me. I resolved never, ever, to deny it again.” 

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ROBBY MYLES is a performing artist, originally from Chicago, IL. Robby moved to Atlanta in 2018, and has continued developing his craft in acting and rapping, along with growing artistically as a filmmaker. Robby Myles is currently working with 7 Stages Theatre and Out Front Theatre on their upcoming filmed projects, and plans to continue to create great work with the many talented artists in the Atlanta area and beyond.

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MONTANA DEBOR is an aerialist and violinist. Originally from Washington, DC she’s performed internationally with circus groups such as Super American Circus, Clowns Without Borders, and Natural Movement Bermuda. She is one half of DeBurk studios and is grateful to be quarantined and creating with her partner, Chris Burk. She is honored to be a part of DAL.

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CHRIS BURK is painter, photographer, multi-media artist and native Atlantian.  Chris’ work strives to uncover the beauty within every subcategory of hidden communities.  His promotion and presentation of local performances, artists and creators is prolific and poignant. Chris is the intellectual architect of Stungunphotography and one half of DeBurk studios with his partner Montana DeBor. 

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THERESA DAVIS: Born into a family of writers and entertainers, Theresa Davis was drawn to the arts. She has expressed her artistic abilities in several mediums. She designed and created Ebony Angels (a line of hand-crafted dolls) , Mental Notes (hand-crafted books) and started a clothing line for children. A classroom teacher for over 20 years, she currently teaches poetry to youth and adults in the Atlanta Area. In 2002, Theresa joined forces with her mother and brother to form the spoken word performance group MoDaSo (Mother/ Daughter/ Son) and released two music CD’s This is for Family and The Uncivil War. She has self published several (7) collections of poetry including Rock Star Poet,Head Games and Simon Says.  

Theresa Davis is one of Atlanta’s best known performance poets, giving voice to the things that you’ve been thinking but never could articulate. Theresa has gone on to forge an impressive career as a solo performer, winning poetry slams and featuring at spoken word venues around Atlanta and the nation, as well as leading writing and performance workshops and headlining conferences across the southeast. She is a member of The Word Diversity Collective/Art Amok and represented Atlanta as a member of the 2006 – 2010 Art Amok Slam Team. In 2009 Theresa was ranked 8th female poet in the world as a finalist in the Women of the World Poetry Slam. Theresa Davis has shared the stage with Eve Ensler, Jane Fonda, Pearl Cleage and Doria Roberts in The Vagina Monologues, with Berniece Johnson Reagan (Sweet Honey in the Rock) and with Def Poet Jon Goode in their joint production of “Wish You Were Here” at 7 Stages Theater in Atlanta, Georgia.

In March of 2011, Theresa set out to compete in the Women of the World Poetry Slam in Columbus Ohio. After three days of competition, she won, becoming the Women of the World Poetry Slam Champion.

In recognition of her years of activism on behalf of Atlanta’s youth, she was honored by the City of Atlanta with a proclamation, declaring May 22, “Theresa Davis Day in Atlanta”.  In July 2012, in partnership with the City of Atlanta’s Bureau of Cultural Affairs, Theresa released her chapbook “Simon Says”–poems about teaching with anti-bullying themes.  

The same year, Theresa was named the 2012  McEver Chair in Poetry at Georgia Tech University.  According to the GA Tech website: “In addition to teaching Tech students, each visiting chair will reach into the community with a program of poetry events and workshops designed to recognize poetry for its possibilities in all our lives and to recognize those involved in the craft of writing poetry–whether accomplished, rising, or beginning–for the artists they are.”

In May 2013, her first full collection of poems entitled “After This We Go Dark” was published by Sibling Rivalry Press. “After This We Go Dark” became an American Library Association Honoree, and the book can now be checked out in local and college libraries around the world. Theresa spent most of 2014 on tour With Shyla Hardwick on “The Huemyn Tour”.  She was featured as the opening performance poet for the band Rising Appalachia for their 2014 national tour.

​Her second collection of poetry “Drowned: A Mermaid’s Manifesto” released in September 2016 by Sibling Rivalry Press has been awarded the honor of being on the 2017 list of All Books Georgians Should Read.

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DESTINY RENEE is an actress, teaching artist and poet in Atlanta, Georgia. She holds a B.A. in theatre from Florida State University. She has also studied performance in London as well as with The Double Edge Theatre Company. She teaches theatre around Atlanta with the Boy’s and Girls Club, Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse and her favorite 7 Stages! She is a proud member of the Shakespeare On Draught theatre company and is a founder of the up and coming Tipsy Tales show.  She aims to create a dialogue about the issues that are deeply affecting the society in which we live through mediums like devised theatre, film and poetry. Ultimately she hopes to create a change.

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NEIL V FRIED has been a multi-media artist, producer and presenter in Atlanta for over 25 years, focusing heavily on film, video, music, and sound design. Many of his interests in recent years have jelled around the idea of “live compositing”, the use of analog and digital technologies to create composite montage in real time using film and video projections, computer processing, performance, and the manipulation of projection screen materials. He has also taught video at the college level and privately.

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WADE TILTON is a Georgia native. Starting in the light booth for the Norcross High School Players, he began acting shortly after doing local and community theater around Atlanta. You may have seen one of his six performances/large scale puppets on the Art on the Atlanta Beltline (2012 – 2017). In 2014, he put on a large-scale show called ‘This Darker Life’ for The Goat Farm. The past six years he was the Assistant Director for XPT (Xperimental Puppetry Theater) at the Center for Puppetry Arts where he was promoted to Director of XPT 2020. Due to Covid-19, the XPT 2020 performance never happened.