Jason Upton is a singer/songwriter with the heart of a pastor. Whether Jason is leading people in worship through singing or speaking, Jason does his best to carry the Father’s heart. His songs and his messages reflect a life fully lived in relationship with God, family and friends.
Jason and Key of David Ministries have several recordings available that document Jason and his band expressing the heart of God for His people through song, instrumental spontaneity and spoken word.
Jason currently lives in Wisconsin with his wife Rachel and their children Samuel, Emma, Lucy and Oliver.
For more information about Jason Upton and Key of David Ministries please visit
John Mark McMillan is something of an anomaly: an artist and Platinum-selling songwriter bending genres and defying categorization by carving out his own unique and independent path. With an ear for melody and a poet’s eye for metaphor, no topic has been off-limits. While each of his albums over the past decade have continued to explore new territory, it’s McMillan’s ability to give lyric and language to the human experience that many consider his greatest gift.
“We are a collective of visual artists, songwriters, fearless musicians and passionate lovers of Jesus. We are close friends who live in community and breathe family. We create in the overflow of celebration and thanksgiving. We are set free by the work of Jesus on the Cross. He has set us free from the cage of fear; we are living in who He says we are. We are His art: free, loved and bought. We are made in the image of our Father the Creator.”
Joel McKerrow is a writer, speaker, educator, community arts worker and one of Australia’s most successful internationally touring performance poets having performed for hundreds of thousands of people throughout the world since 2010. Based out of Melbourne, Australia he is the Artist Ambassador for the aid and development organization ‘TEAR Australia’ and was the co-founder of community arts organization, 'The Centre for Poetics and Justice' (2010-2013). Joel was the third ever Australian representative at the Individual World Poetry Slam Championships in the USA (2012) and has performed in venues like The Nuyorican Poets Cafe and Bowery Poetry Club (NYC), The Sydney Opera House, The Forum and Atheneum theatres (Melbourne), The Metropolis (Montreal), Victoria Parliament House and many more. He is a TEDx speaker and performer, the frontman poet from the band, 'Joel McKerrow & the Mysterious few’ and recently Joel’s theatre show The People of the Sun, co-written with Anna McGahan, debuted to sold out and raving audiences throughout Australia. Joel is invited to speak at gatherings all over the world on the intersection of spiritual/identity formation, social justice and creativity and has been named ‘a true leader in Australia's performance poetry scene.’ Brian McLaren (Author and activist) has also said of Joel, ‘In a time when politics, theology, and other important avenues of human intercourse suffer from a flatness of prose and a vacuum of meaning, Joel walks on stage just when we need him, sounding off with all the craft of a first-rate poet and all the verve of a first-rate performer.’
Josh Riebock is the best-selling author of Heroes and Monsters and My Generation, host of the popular podcast, The Marrow, and a sought-after storyteller and poet at venues around the country for his captivating artistry and honesty. Josh was raised in suburban Illinois and, following stints in Austin, Texas and Charleston, South Carolina, now lives in New York City with his wife, Kristen and his dog, Ditka. Josh is an avid reader, a film lover, a coffee drinker, and a brother to two extraordinary sisters. He can be found at joshriebock.com.
Stephen Roach is the pioneering visionary of The Breath & the Clay creative arts movement. He a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, public-speaker and poet. He is the founding member of the cinematic-folk band Songs of Water and has written and recorded seven albums to date. Stephen has contributed music to independent films and commercials as well as the works of recording artists Ricky Skaggs, Jonathan David Helser, John Mark McMillan, and many others.
Stephen travels internationally, performing and conducting workshops and keynotes on creativity and the pursuit of God. He has taught as a guest speaker at various creative schools including The 18 Inch Journey and Selah Ministries Creative Worship Schools. He served as Worship Pastor and Creative Arts Director for Awake Church in Winston Salem, NC. Currently, he is hosting his own Maker & Mystics Podcast, composing music for film and is working on his first book of non-fiction prose. He and his wife, Sarah, live in Greensboro, NC, with their two beautiful children, Evangelyn Belle and Isaac Brighton.
Lyn Lasneksi is a visual artist and workshop instructor. She will be conducting a breakout session on:
"THE SECRET LIFE OF YOUR BRAIN: It's NOT Art for Art's Sake, but ART for GENIUS Sake"
In this breakout you will learn that the vastmajority of geniuses throughout history were artists: DaVinci, Winston Churchill, George Washington Carver, even Hitler to name a fraction. The most prolific genius ever, Leonardo da Vinci, said the secret to his genius was: "SAPER VEDERE”, Latin for: "to know how to see.” Extreme few of us understand the indispensable need to think by seeing, by visual perception, and by all our senses! “I very rarely think in words at all,” Einstein told a psychologist. Art is God's ancient, secret path to genius. Every creative genius in history was a visual thinker: including Nikola Tesla, Benjamin Franklin, Isaac Newton, Thomas Edison, Winston Churchill, Richard Feynman, Steve Jobs and even the autistic, but genius Temple Grandin. Academic literacy was not their secret.
"Creativity is the great mystery at the center of Western culture. We preach order, science, logic and reason.
But none of the great accomplishments of science, logic and reason was actually achieved in a scientific, logical, reasonable manner.
Every single one must, instead, be attributed to the strange, obscure and definitively irrational process of creative inspiration.
Logic and reason are indispensible in the working out of ideas, once they have arisen - but the actual conception of bold, original ideas is something else entirely.'
~ Ben Goertzel: 'ON THE DYNAMICS OF CREATIVITY'
You will learn why a creative, visual literacy is more important than academic skills (yes, evenreading and writing) for "the conception of bold, original ideas". You will learn why Einstein said, "Imagination is more important than knowledge." In our short time together, we will activate some creative thinking and image-ination skills to show you how potent this is!!
Gemma Bender & Taylor Johnson
Gemma and Taylor will be performing at The Breath & the Clay as well as heading up our choreography workshop titled:
"Sensory experience through full body movement"
Taylor Johnson, 23, is a Columbus native and a recent graduate of The Juilliard School (class of 2016). She is trained in a wide range of styles of dance, including Limon, Cunningham, Graham, Horton, improvisation, classical & contemporary partnering and dance composition. She also loves to dabble in jazz and hip hop. While at Juilliard, she performed works by Kate Weare, Jose Limon, Merce Cunningham, Eliot Field, Brian Brooks, Kyle Abraham, and Camille A. Brown. Taylor has been on the stages of The City Center and The Joyce Theater in New York City. She also participated in “Into the Sun,” a creative collaboration between seven artists, with the Arts Fusion Initiative and toured widely in Kansas and Missouri.
Following graduation, Taylor created and directed a summer program for kids at The Salvation Army in Columbus, Ohio. She also performed in Lauren Adams’ “The Rock Below” at Salvatore Capezio Theater and choreographed “Afflictions of a Barren Woman” with three colleagues, which debuted at The Abbey Theater in Columbus, Ohio.
Taylor is currently dancing for GroundWorks Dance Theater in Cleveland, Ohio. When she is not dancing, she loves to bounce around different coffee shops with her husband, get lost in the woods, and stare with infatuation at her dog.
Gemma Freitas Bender, from Buffalo, New York, is a 2014-2015 recipient of the Princess Grace USA Award, and a graduate of The Juilliard School. At Juilliard, Gemma had the opportunity to study a plethora of styles. She performed repertoire by Martha Graham, Jose Limon, Eliot Feld, and Murray Louis, as well as new choreographies by Monica Bill Barnes, Emery LeCrone, Darrel Grand Moultrie and Larry Keigwin. She has performed as part of the Guggenheim Museum's Works and Process, at The Chicago Dance Festival, and the Dizzy Feet Gala, in LA. During her time at Juilliard she was also very involved in workshops, performing works of other students, as well as her own. Following graduation, Gemma joined Les Ballet Jazz de Montreal where she had the privilege to travel throughout North America, Europe, and Asia, performing works by Andonis Foniadakis, Barak Marshall, Wen Wei Wang, and Rodrigo Pederneiras. She was fortunate to fulfill her teaching passion as well, conducting masterclasses worldwide. In 2016, Gemma received a choreographic grant through Cleveland Public Theatre's DanceWorks to create and perform an original work. Gemma is now honored to be a member of GroundWorks Dance Theater, in Cleveland, Ohio, where she enjoys spending time with her musician husband, cooking, journaling, and discovering new parts of the city.
Ray Hughes: Dreamer & Chief Storyteller
Ray Hughes lives within earshot of the Singing River near Muscle Shoals, Alabama. He has traveled the world for over 40 years as an author, storyteller, songwriter, and poet. He is passionate about creativity and training creative people. He is also passionate about biscuits, old guitars, and looking gift horses in the mouth (but not necessarily in that order). He doesn't trust people that good dogs don't like.
Kathy Brusnighan is the Artist Coordinator for The Breath & The Clay. She has a desire to promote excellence in artists and their creative process. She is currently the director of Gallery 320, located in Greensboro, NC., and founder of the “How do you paint Courage?” exhibits that have traveled across the state since 2011.
Vesper Stamper is an author-illustrator born in Germany and raised in New York City. She lives with her husband, filmmaker Ben Stamper, and their two children who are talented artists in their own right. Her debut illustrated novel, The Orange Tree, (Knopf, spring 2018) tells the story of two teen Holocaust survivors as they emerge from the horrors of Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.
Vesper’s work deals with the question of individuals—especially children—surviving and thriving after trauma, and the exploration and proclamation of God’s general revelation through creation and culture. She has a desire to help artists embrace their responsibility as social and relational ambassadors, and Christian artists to resist the culture's temptation to choose between serious artmaking and a vibrant faith in the person and work of Messiah Jesus.
She holds a BFA in Illustration from Parsons and an MFA in Illustration as Visual Essay from School of Visual Arts. Vesper is the winner of the New Jersey SCBWI Juried Show and People’s Choice awards, and was the People’s Choice Finalist in the Lilla Rogers Global Talent Search. She is the recipient of the Lincoln City Fellowship for her illustrated novel, The Sea King’s Children, and the St. Andrew’s Society graduate fellowship. In addition to The Orange Tree, Vesper will publish a second illustrated novel with Knopf.
Burn 24-7 is a movement of burning hearts all across the globe returning back to their first love and then taking that love to nations. Our core is communities unifying around the Presence of God for "burns" consisting of 12 to 100 hours of nonstop of worship and prayer at least once per month. Join The Burn Winston Salem Thursday night March 16th 6pm-midnight. We are going to begin the weekend by releasing a vertical sound of love, hope and freedom. We are believing for a collision of worship, prayer and the release supernatural creativity to fulfill the great commission.
The Burn is free and open to the public. You don't have to be registered to come.
Thursday March 22nd at 7:00 PM with various artists
email: firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
A Designer and illustrator by trade I am the Art Director for the digital ad agency MyJive. By night, I’ve fearlessly directed creative for both America XL and Thundercolor and and managed / curated for AKA Creative all comfortably nestled in Charlotte, NC - where I hang my hat with my incredibly tolerant wife and four exuberant children.
I'm fascinated with humanity's relationship to the animal kingdom. The raw ferocity predator's display - unapologetic, insatiable yet completely natural. It’s a force that humbles and simultaneously disturbs us once that same animalistic insatiability is seen within humanity.
Rooted in our deep need to humanize the non-human and dissolve grand differences between the two kingdoms, we misinterpret predator's actions as rage and malice. There is only singular function within their Kingdom, however humanity possesses the choice of nobility or tyranny.
The process of growth, harvest, transport, and roasting coffee is an amazing journey. To translate the fruit of a coffee cherry into a drinkable beverage, each step is integral to the experience of making a great cup of coffee.
Maker Coffee, launched through the Cageless Birds Collective in 2015, is the tangible fruit of a community pioneering together. Roaster and operator Chris Miller has a life-long passion to bridge the gap between the creator and the created work.
At the heart of Maker Coffee is a commitment to source excellent, specialty grade coffee and pursue longterm direct trade partnerships with amazing coffee farmers and importers throughout the world, supporting the families and farms who labor to produce the best possible fruit.
When coffee beans are grown and processed well, shipped carefully, and roasted with attention and respect to the intrinsic flavors of the bean, it’s a reverent celebration of the nuances coffee can offer. It is a window into the soil, people, and culture that gave this fruit it’s quality and unique personality.
We believe that coffee is more than just a flavor or a product. It is the slow part in our day...the pause...and a communion place for friendship. Our desire is to pour into the lives of people on both sides of this story. Maker Coffee is roasted fresh weekly, shipped daily, and rotated seasonally. As one dream carries another, all of the profits from the roasted coffee help support the ministry and discipleship taking place year-round at A Place for the Heart, in Sophia, NC.
Find out more about Maker Coffee and Cageless Birds at
Luke and Rosemary Skaggs live in Asheboro, NC, where they work for a ministry called A Place for the Heart, led by Jonathan and Melissa Helser. Here they help disciple students to cultivate thriving hearts in the Lord and to live empowered lives by walking in their true identity as sons and daughters of God. Rosemary teaches pottery classes during discipleship schools and Luke works in the music studio and travels, playing music with various artists. Both are passionate about music, the arts, worship, life, food, family, the Lord and watching people become set free by the love and power of Jesus.
I am a Winston-Salem, NC native, surrounded by the arts from childhood. I live life with my husband, Michael, and daughter, Hallie. hold a bachelor’s degree in Art Education from UNC Greensboro and teach a variety of visual art courses in the community to middle and high school students and adults. In education I enjoy implementing group projects, such as large art installations, Plein Air painting trips, murals and flash mobs. As an artist I fulfill art commissions and develop my personal body of paintings and yarn installations. I also lead the Artist & Craftsman ministry at Awake Church, hosting art exhibits, craft fairs and live artists during worship services. Through my work I want to witness the change that happens as people discover their own creativity, experience a new creative event or simply transform when gazing upon a work of art.