Flames ‘N Dames is Michigan's premier Flow Arts Group specializing in fire dance demonstrations and ambient entertainment. It is an all-female fire performance group out of Lansing, Michigan consisting of Nat Spinz, Anna Faye, and Paige Marie. Nat grew up on the West Side of Lansing. Anna grew up in Mason, MI, and Paige grew up in Lansing & East Lansing before going to school in Mason, MI. The three met during a Flow Jam in East Lansing's Patriarche Park. A flow jam is when movement artists gather together to share, collaborate, dance, and socialize, creating community around their craft. Nat, Anna, & Paige are all multi-prop performers that come from different performance backgrounds, and are notorious for their sassy style of fire dancing and hype audience engagement. Each Dame brings their own special sauce to the group, giving every Flames 'N Dames performance an unforgettable experience.
The members of Flames N’ Dames have collectively & individually worked, performed, and taught hoop dancing in Michigan & throughout the Midwest. Nat has performed for several events, such as Viking Warrior Fest, Nordic Fire Festival, Trick-or-Treat on the Square, The Artist’s Umbrella, NYE South Haven, MerFest, Harbor Fest, Frontier Days, Charlotte Celebrates, How-to Halloween, 517 Living Week, Cedar Street Art Collective, The Marque, The Hall, Windwalker Underground Gallery, Grand Ledge Opera House, Stilettos and Steel Fall Showcase, AL!VE, Arts Night Out, Arts Beats & Eats, Eaton Rapids 4th of July Events, Urban Air, CommUNITY Day, Spinsanity Flow Down, Threadbare Mitten Film Festival, among several private events, and over 200 school and daycare assemblies. Anna has performed at venues such as the Wharton Center, Michigan State University’s Summer Circle Theatre, Windwalker Underground Gallery, MICA Gallery, and Lansing’s Jazz Festival & Blues Festival. She joined Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp’s international dance ensemble and danced through Europe for a month as a fine arts ambassador. Other events include Viking Warrior Festival, The Artist Gym Flowcase, Charlotte Summer Flow Series, and the Michigan Hoop Dance Retreat. Finally, Paige has performed at the First Miss Revelation Drag show, Lansing Bluesfest, The Artist Umbrella, Michigan Hoop Dance Retreat, Viking Warrior Fest, The Artist Gym Flowcase, Charlotte Summer Flow Series, A Day in the Village for the City of Stockbridge.
Flames N’ Dames have been featured on Fox 47, WILX, Tia Time with Artists Podcast, Tim Barron Radio Show, Every Damn Day podcast by Jerry Norris, 517 Magazine, WKAR, and The City Pulse. They are always looking for opportunities to bring quality entertainment to the Lansing area and love to collaborate with other businesses. Currently, they are looking for sponsorships to help them continue funding and growing their Fire Flow Jam Series, which will be coming to Lansing in 2022.
Nat Spinz is a professional hoop dancer and fire spinner. She travels the United States to various school assemblies and daycare centers to teach children about flow arts and the importance of following their dreams, no matter how impossible they may seem. Nat teaches hoop dancing classes to both kids and adults in the Lansing area and strives to convey a message that play time is important, no matter the age. Nat has hosted the Charlotte Fire Flow Jam Series for 4 years, offering free public entertainment for all ages. Flames ‘N Dames was born in 2020 from the Series.
Anna Faye is a lifelong dancer who discovered a passion for flow arts in 2014. Brought up in the Lansing Area she studied ballet & modern dance at Happendance, Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, Dancewerks, the Children's Ballet Theater, and more. Anna is passionate about immersing her community in a celebration of art and culture. With her performance experience, international and local, she wishes to provide engaging entertainment to all.
Paige Marie was introduced to the flow arts community in 2016 and instantly fell in love. This passion combined with her zest for bringing joy to others has culminated in years of performing both professionally and for fun. She specializes in many different flow props and takes pride in continued learning and improving her craft.
For more information on Flames N’ Dames, you can visit their website:
To contact Flames N’ Dames, or to inquire about booking them for their next event, email them at: FlamesNDames517@gmail.com
You can also follow them on social media platforms listed below, or by using their handle: @flamesndames
YouTube: Flames N' Dames
Monday Night Masterpiece: New Live Talk Show & Art Experience Coming to the Capital City on Monday Nights this Fall
Monday Night Masterpiece
See The Stars of Tomorrow, Today!
Every Monday from September 13 – December 20
Doors open at 6:30pm, Show starts at 7pm and will run a little over an hour
Venue: The Opportunity Arts Artitorium
1705 S. Cedar Street (The Old Dicker & Deal)
Parking in lot off of Isbell Street
For more information & to purchase your $20 ticket visit:
Opportunity Arts presents Monday Night Masterpiece, a Live Talk Show & Art Experience that features one individual performing/visual artist every Monday Night in 2021 starting Sept. 13th at 7:00pm at the Opportunity Arts Artitorium in Lansing, MI. Tickets are $20 and there are a limited number of seats available. For more information and to purchase tickets to see your favorite artist(s) visit: www.opportunityarts.org/monday-night-masterpiece.html
“It’s basically is a hybrid of The Tonight Show & Austin City Limits,” said Mike Marriott, The Arts Promoter & owner of Opportunity Arts. Late night talk shows have given national celebrities & artists a platform for their fans to become more familiar with who they are as a person. This will do the same thing but on a local scale. The show will feature some of the most talented & driven performing & visual artists our Capital City Community has to offer. There will also be performances & visual art presentations as part of the show.
The first show on September 13th will feature Internationally Acclaimed Opera Singer and new resident of Lansing, Stephano Andreotti. “We wanted to kick things off with Stephano as a shout out to Willy Nelson & Austin City Limits,” said Marriott. Willy left Nashville and moved to a state capital (Austin, TX) because he wanted more creative freedom to make the music he wanted. That moved transformed Austin into “The Live Music Capital of the World”. Stephano Andreotti, who has won international awards, and toured Europe, left New York City and moved to our state capital of Lansing, MI for the same reason. This series will be another strong example of why Lansing is becoming “The Creatives Capital”.
The remainder of the season is loaded with talent and artists of multiple mediums including chalk artists, painters, poets, illustrators, authors, musicians, and mixed media artists. The show schedule for the first half of Season 1 is as follows:
Sept. 13th – Internationally Acclaimed Opera Singer Stephano Andreotti
Purchase Tickets Here
Sept. 20th - Visual Artist, Educator, and Ghostbuster Ryan Holmes
Sept. 27th - Visual Artist and Ralf Henrickson Award Winner Autumn Hopkins
Oct. 4th - Poet & Lyricist Morgan Madden - 517 Living Week
Oct. 11th - Visual Artist & Gallery Coordinator for the Lansing Art Gallery Sarah Parker
Oct. 18th - Visual Artist Kylee Kellett
Oct. 25th - Author & Educator Kristine Brickey
Nov. 1st - Priestess Dikastiria of Daimonikos Productions
Nov. 8th - Producer & Hip Hop Artist Torrey Gray
Nov. 15th - Poet Grace Carras
Nov. 22nd - Visual Artist Melina Brann
Nov. 29th - Jeweler & Visual Artist Danielle Smith
Dec. 6th - Poet Keyante Saxon aka KT the Conscious Poet
2 Part Mid-Season Finale
Dec. 13th - The Artist known as SHE presents the dark side of the Holidays
Dec. 20th - Body Painter Sarah Sanders presents the light side of the Holidays
For more information on Monday Night Masterpiece, and to purchase tickets visit:
Keyante Saxon, aka KT the Conscious Poet is a poet/lyricist from Lansing, MI that uses linguistic creativity, to bring thought provoking content in an effort to understand consciousness and share perspective on shared reality. He uses art to build community, provide safe space for expression and to uplift & encourage the next generation. KT is a creative idealist and proprietor of love. He also operates as a business owner, (The Conscious Streamers, LLC) an arts and Entertainment Company that throws various events to build community and create change. Keyante has collaborated with The Ace of Diamonds, Mila Lynn for Compose & Color, & Black is King, & is currently collaborating with Torrey Gray on upcoming project that will premiere in December 2021.
KT has performed at The Poetry Room, The Artist’s Umbrella: Art is Shelter, Sycamore Creek Church, the One Love Global Black Renaissance Festival, Annual Truth Racial Healing & Transformation Conference, WERD Studio Atlanta, Apache XLR Lounge Atlanta, as well as prominent open mics in Atlanta, GA, Detroit, MI, & Lansing, MI. He has also been featured in the "517 Voices" show put on by Alexis Rosado, & recently hosted the 2021 Juneteenth Festival in Lansing, MI. His newest endeavor is a weekly open mic every Thursday eventing called “Conscious Streaming” that takes place at One Love Global in Lansing. Keyante’s mission is to build loving, diverse and creative bridges connecting communities through artistic expression.
For more information on Keyante & his work visit:
Rue Anarchy is a passionate raw emotion based artist. “Subtlety explosive in the nature in which I present thy. Oscillating between mysterious and fathomable while displaying the multifaceted nature of true being. A most uniquely peculiar way to relay messages to thee, I suppose. I am.”
Rue Anarchy is a messenger here to cultivate an adventurous, imaginative, and sociably in tune community of expansion minded beings who resonate with each other. Rue Anarchy is a way of being, here to show people how to grow out of the survival fear based way of life and transition into a more expansive love based way of living life. This message is currently distributed through Poetry, Music and Speech.
Born and raised in Detroit, MI, Rue mainly work as an artist in Detroit, Lansing, & Grand Rapids, MI, as well as in Dallas and Houston, TX. He has performed at El Club, Grand Valley State University, Compose & Color, Gee Love presents Fight Night, Define Detroit and Poetry & Punchlines. Rue has been featured in LA Wire, and he recorded a song named Hard Body which was co-signed & featured DMX. Rue holds a Bachelor of Science in Communications Studies with emphasis in Entrepreneurship.
“To be genuine in true self is inspiration thus being the spark of Genius” - Rue Anarchy
For more information on Rue Anarchy & his work visit:
Casey McVay is a multimedia artist from Stockbridge, MI who creates work centered around introspectiveness based on science, philosophy, and personal observations. She draws in graphite and occasionally paints, sings, sculpts, writes short stories, writes & recites poetry, and the occasional song. Casey is mostly self-trained after studying art for 4 years of it in high school. Much of Casey’s creative inspiration comes in the car. “I can't list the amazing things I've thought of while having to drive.”
Casey comes from a family of artists. Her dad is an amazing photographer based in traditional darkroom techniques with decades of experience (Casey is planning on drawing one of his pieces for Christmas), and her mom has a lot of experience with drawing, painting, sculpting, and knitting. Casey has graced the stages of both The Poetry Room, & The Artist’s Umbrella, the latter of which is where she volunteers as Tech Manager in addition to performing.
“I’m just a girl trying to figure out if reality is real, or if I'm just a Boltzmann Brain of coagulated mass that formed out of nothing and everything ever is imaginary.”
For more information on Casey & her work visit:
Dr. Cheryl Caesar is a professor of writing at Michigan State University who makes and performs poetry, sings, and makes art with charcoal, watercolor, acrylics and collage. Born in Ann Arbor, Cheryl later lived in Lansing, Riverside CA, Paris, Tuscany and Sligo (Republic of Ireland). She has performed at poetry readings at MICA Gallery, Urban Beat, Acoustic Coffeehouse, Grand Ledge District Library, Okemos District Library, Wednesday Night Poets, East Lansing Art Festival, Society for the Study of Midwestern Literature, Michigan College English Association, Windwalker Gallery, Voices of Michigan Poets, The Artists' Umbrella, The Poetry Room, Serendipity Bookstore in Chelsea, The Ballsians, Skazat!, The Crafted Bean, Nuyorican Poets Café, Reo Town Readings, The Social Gap. She has also facilitated poetry workshops for the Lansing Poetry Club.
Cheryl was the winner of the third prize in Singapore Unbound international poetry contest; honorable mention in Poetry Super Highway. The winner of the "All-age" scholarship to Social Justice Week Writing workshop at Fine Arts Work Center in Providence, Massachusetts which was awarded by Indolent Books. She studied comparative literature (English, American, French and Russian) at the Sorbonne, where she earned her doctorate. Cheryl has given readings with Ruelaine Stokes, Mary Anna Scenga Kruch, Marylinda Fox, Melinda Pope, & Margaret Krusinga. Cheryl began drawing and painting more intensively during the shutdown. Her visual artwork has now appeared in the anthology Words Across the Water (including on the cover) and the literary magazine After the Pause.
Cheryl comes from a talented family of writers. Her father and her paternal grandmother were both professional writers. Her father wrote fiction and nonfiction about American history and natural history, and her grandmother wrote "women's fiction." Cheryl has published poetry in the U.S., Germany, India, Bangladesh, Yemen and Zimbabwe. She contributed to local anthologies The Social Gap, Buzz Zine and Rejoice Everyone! A Reo Town Reading Anthology. She is a board member of the Lansing Poetry Club and is co-editing, with President Ruelaine Stokes, an anthology on the theme of the Lansing poetry scene in the "old days" (anywhere from the seventies to the early aughts.) Cheryl and her work have been featured in the City Pulse. Reviews of her chapbook Flatman have appeared in The Blue Nib, The Poetry Café, Panoply and The Mark Literary Review. She has been interviewed as Poet of the Month on Poetry in the Bar.
For More Information on Cheryl & her work visit:
Anna Rose is an emerging mixed media artist who grew up around Charlotte and Portland, MI. She makes surreal art, pour paintings, and custom pet portraits. Now residing in the Lansing area, Anna recently began selling her art as a vendor at the Artist’s Umbrella. She has created art throughout most of her life, but has only recently begun seeking a platform to share her art with the world.
Anna comes from a talented family of artists. Her great grandmother was an artist, and her mother got her into art at a very young age. She began finger painting around a year old. In addition to visual art, Anna also likes to create music. She has a degree in psychology, and works in the health care field as a therapist who works with kids on the autism spectrum. Anna values her work because it gives her rewarding opportunities to make life-changing impacts on the lives of her clients.
For More Information on Anna & her work visit:
Sarah “Sunshine” Parker is a visual artist from Lansing, MI. She holds not one, but two degrees in art from Michigan State University, receiving both a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting, and a Bachelor of Arts in the Humanities in 2015. Typically using paint to express, Sarah is most known for her photorealistic moons and watercolor illustrations. Watercolor is her go to medium, and much of her work is illustrative, colorful, and imaginative. Sarah is deeply inspired by nature, science, outer space, fairy tales, and finding beauty in the simple, everyday things. “As a person and as an artist, I am constantly evolving. Creativity ebbs and flows, and to stick to one medium or style can feel limiting.” Sarah is left handed, and she has always felt that it contributes to her creativity.
When not creating her own art, Sarah works at the Lansing Art Gallery & Education Center as the Gallery Coordinator, and for Michigan Creative as a Graphic Designer. Sarah has participated in several art fairs, the most notable being ArtFeast in Old Town. She has also done events with the Artist’s Umbrella, where she has been a vendor and a speed painter.
Sarah comes from a family of great artists. Her niece is The Ace of Hearts, Autumn Hopkins. Her mom was a very talented artist who specialized in drawing. Her dad is more of an inventor, and he studied architecture, and her sister Maddie is an artist as well. “The art of making runs deep in my family. From a young age, I was encouraged to be myself, and to make all of the art I could possibly make, so that’s exactly what I did. Drawing, painting, collage, sculpture; the variety of media available to create things is what had me continuously coming back for more. My love for art led me to pursue it further, and in 2015 I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Michigan State University, along with a Bachelor of Arts in the Arts & Humanities. A few years later I started classes at Lansing Community College, and in 2019 I completed a certificate in Graphic Design. Art will always have a place in my life, whether it's creating personal or professional work. I continue to explore new avenues for my creativity and connecting with my local community of artists. In 2020 a friend and I created a virtual art show, and subsequently an Instagram account called Create & Connect meant to connect artists with opportunities to create, share, and sell their work.”
For more information on Sarah & her work visit:
Elisa Schmidt, the owner of Territory 50, is a watercolor & mixed media artist from Lansing, MI. She holds a Bachelors of Art from Sienna Height University in Adrian, where she studied graphic design. Her art has been featured all throughout Michigan, from St. Ignace and Petoskey, to St. Johns and Lansing. She has illustrated two published books; The Business of Beans: A Young Entrepreneur’s Story in Tanzania, written by Lisa Mulka, and The Story that Lives Across the Sea, written by Charis Calender-Suemnik. Elisa’s art has hung in galleries such as Michigan Artist’s Market in Petoskey, Katalyst and Absolute Galleries in Lansing, Keys to Creativity in Lansing, TIC in East Lansing, Studio Retreat in St. Johns, Gracie’s Place in Williamston, at the Art and Craft Beerfest in Lansing, the Alma Wine Festival, Arts Night Out events in Lansing, 517 Day, & the Summer of Love Music Festival. Her work has been shown on two billboards in Lansing. She painted two piano’s one of which is in the City Market in Lansing. Both pianos have been featured multiple times in the City Pulse.
Elisa herself has been featured in the Lansing City Pulse multiple times for exhibiting at different venues around Lansing. A photograph of hers was featured in News- Press Tropicalia in the “Pictures from Paradise” section. She was also interviewed by Melik Brown for Lansing Made for a gallery show at Katalyst, Old Town Lansing.
The Business of Beans: A Young Entrepreneur’s Story in Tanzania, was awarded the EIFLE award in 2017, Elisa won 1st place for Old Town Riverbash Plein Air painting contest in 2018, & was a top 5 finalist for the visual artist category in City Pulse Top of the Town, 2017. She has collaborated with Larry Grudt from Keys to Creativity for an art piece that was auctioned off raising money for Lansing schools, and is currently collaborating with Anita Brett on a painting for a client. Elisa has also shown with Julian VanDyke at American Fifth Spirits.
In addition to her artistic work, Elisa is a veteran custom picture framer at Hobby Lobby in East Lansing. Elisa loves painting on road maps and nautical charts. Inspiration for her work comes from travels she has been on and the beauty of nature, particularly in the Les Cheneaux area of the Upper Peninsula where her second home is.
For more information on Elisa & her work visit:
Amari Roper is a musician born in Lansing, MI, and raised here locally, graduating from Eastern High School. Before all things, Amari is a storyteller. “Music may be the main medium that I work with, but the techniques I've learned through studying the art of story are a large part of what informs my approach to music. Story is one of the biggest aspects of my work and life, as well as a lens through which I try to make sense of the world around me. Stories have many different purposes, but in shorthand, they give people a means of connecting and relating to others, of teaching and learning lessons, and of sharing experiences that are worth remembering. Folk music in particular speaks to me because its main substance lies in telling a damn good story in as engaging and entertaining of a way as possible. There are many stories I have yet to hear and have yet to tell, so I know that story will always have a place within my music,” says Roper.
For a long time Amari stayed a closet musician and only played in backyards and around bonfires until one day he got an opportunity to play a show at REO Town's Blue Owl Coffee in Lansing. Amari recently got the chance to perform at the Artist's Umbrella's Vibes in Bloom show and on the Opportunity Arts Stage at the Lansing 5:01 Block:Aid in Downtown Lansing. Amari has also been featured on WILX.
Amari spent a lot of his childhood in Nashville, Michigan at a campground that his family had gone to for a few generations. “There wasn't much in terms of technology or internet access at the time, so I would spend my time digging holes and making sand castles on the beach, catching frogs in the creek and wandering through the woods. I loved it. It's because of that time that I still actively try to set aside time away from technology to wander the woods. It's a grounding place for me, and I'm sure that the natural world will always find a way to creep into my songs. I started learning to play music around when I was 16 from the neighbor of a close friend. That neighbor is now a great friend and mentor who's been helping me ever since. I've been fortunate to have the support I have over the years and am grateful for the Lansing community.”
For more information on Amari & his work visit:
News about Opportunity Arts and it's Affiliates.
Monday Night Masterpiece:
New Live Talk Show & Art Experience Coming to the Capital City on Monday Nights this Fall
Seizing the Opportunity:
The Lansing Art Gallery & Education Center Becomes an Opportunity Arts Affiliate.
Seizing the Opportunity:
The Poetry Room with
Masaki Takahashi becomes
Opportunity Arts Affiliates.