Artist INC Peer Facilitators

Beau Bledsoe’s performances have been described as “pointedly musical” by Paul Horsley The Kansas City Star.  He regularly performs and records with some of the greatest artists in Tango, Flamenco and classical music as he seeks to integrate different musical cultures with diverse audiences. Beau studied classical guitar at the UMKC Conservatory of Music under Douglas Niedt where he received a Master of Music. It was at this time that Beau met many of the musicians that he still performs with today such as tenor, Nathan Granner, classical violinist, Elizabeth Suh Lane, soprano, Victoria Botero, composer/pianist, Brad Cox, and Argentine Tango quintet Tango Lorca. He has served as music faculty at both Baker University in Baldwin City, Kansas and Rockhurst College in Kansas City, Missouri and has continued his own musical studies with such masters as Antonio Andrade, Pedro Cortez and Luis Heredia of La Repompa de Málaga. Through his many diverse projects and ensembles, Beau has had the great fortune of performing in almost every state in the United States. In addition, Beau has toured extensively in Mexico, Argentina, Spain, Germany, France, Switzerland, Turkey and Russia. Beau has become an avid student of Ottoman Classical Music and was recently invited to perform at the Flamenco en La Frontera Festival in Morón de la Frontera, Spain.

Chris Dahlquist learned to use a camera and darkroom as she was learning to ride a bicycle and write in cursive. Originally from Fort Worth, she wrote her first artist statement on a Big Chief Tablet in phonetic Texan, claiming for herself a life of travel and “tacking pitchers”.  She has held a camera in her hands ever since.

After spending the early part of her career in commercial photography and film, Dahlquist returned to her childhood proclamation and since 1998 has exhibited extensively throughout the United States. Dahlquist’s photography is in hundreds of private, corporate, and municipal collections, and has won more than 50 awards at nationally juried art fairs. In addition to those awards, she has been awarded an Inspiration Grant from the Metropolitan Kansas City Arts Council and a Development Grant from the Mid-America Art Alliance.

Lisa Marie Evans is a Kansas City, Missouri native. Her work varies in form from feature length documentary to short animation and public art installation. Evans fulfills her love to travel by participating in artist residencies and screening her work internationally. She has been a selected artist for various awards and grants.

Evans has worked as an instructor at the Kansas City Art Institute and UMKC, and as a facilitator for Artists INC, a professional development course for artists. Evans develops curricula and leads all ages in exploring personal and community issues through the art of filmmaking.

Jose Faus is a native of Bogota, Colombia and a long time resident of the Kansas City area. He is a visual artist, writer and teacher. He received degrees in Studio Art/Painting and Creative Writing/Journalism from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. He has been involved in a series of mural projects locally and internationally. He recently completed a project in Bolivia as a cultural envoy of the State Department. Last year he was chosen as the Poetry Winner of Poets &Writers Maureen Egen Writers Exchange contest for the state of Kansas. He is a founding member of the Latino Writers Collective and sits on the boards of Nuevo Eden and The Writes Place.

Nathan Granner, a Sony/BMG Masterworks recording artist, has received critical acclaim from The Boston Globe, The London Times, The New York Times, Opera News, Washington Post, and USA Today for his appearances as a solo artist as well as for his leading role portrayals with the National Symphony Orchestra, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Irish Radio Orchestra, the Tulsa Philharmonic, Opera Theatre Saint Louis, the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, the Wolf Trap Opera, Opera Tampa, and the Tulsa Opera.

During the 2005 – 2006 season, Nathan produced a successful double national tour, performing for nearly 33,000 patrons in 35 American cities, with classical guitarist Beau Bledsoe to support their CD “Departure,” and with Soprano Lisa Williamson in their “Waiting for Guffman”- meets-Anna-Russell-type comedic opera concert, “I Dolci Canti.”

Mr. Granner has also been a force in the Kansas City metropolitan area, working and collaborating throughout the community as an artistic director, a general manager and as an entrepreneur. He is co-founder and President of, Kansas City’s online journal of the Performing Arts, an answer to the shrinking press coverage of the print media industry.

Jeff Harshbarger.  Voted 2011 Person of the Year by and Best bassist by Pitch Magazine, Jeff Harshbarger has had quite an eclectic career. A prolific composer and bandleader in his own right, Jeff has recorded and performed across the globe with such varied artists as Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey, Bobby Watson, Allison Miller, Curtis Fuller, Forever Tango, Eugene Chadborne, Milt Abel, Tango Lorca, Jimmy Carl Black, Krystle Warren, Snuff Jazz, Brad Cox, Nathan Granner, Ghosty, The People's Liberation Big Band of the Greater Kansas City Area and Forrest Whitlow. He is a co-founder of Tzigane Music, an artist-run collective and record label, and is the curator of Jeff Harshbarger Presents: An Alternative Jazz Series, promoting new improvised music in Kansas City. An Artist in Residence for Escape to Create, Jeff has received numerous grants and awards, including The Kennedy Center's Betty Carter Fellowship, the Steans Institute Fellowship and the Professional Development Grant from the Creative Capital Foundation.

Sarah Hearn is an interdisciplinary visual artist and citizen scientist. Her artwork, rooted in drawing, photography, installation and participatory culture, explores the shifting boundaries of science and science fiction. Sarah has exhibited in galleries and art spaces across the United States from New Mexico to New York and has contributed to international collaborations in Brooklyn, Berlin, and most recently Reading, UK for 2014 International Science Week. Her fictional catalog of marine life An Unnatural History represented the United States at the World Creativity Biennial. Sarah’s multi-year collaboration with a PhD lichenologist will soon result in the first field guide of its kind in the Plains region. In addition to her artistic practice Sarah has diverse experience as an Arts Administrator, Curator, Writer, and Educator employed by both for-profit and non-profit art spaces, universities, and museums. She earned her BFA at the Santa Fe College of Art & Design, and her MFA from Rochester Institute of Technology. 

Erin McGrane has been an active performing artist in the KC arts and music community for many years.  Erin is a film, theatre and commercial actress; a musician and songwriter; and one of the co-hosts of the TV program CINEMAKC.  Most notably Erin appeared in the Emmy-winning web series THE UNREAL HOUSEWIVES OF KANSAS CITY and in the Oscar-nominated movie, UP IN THE AIR alongside George Clooney.  Erin plays a lead role in the award-winning thriller feature film NAILBITER and appears in numerous short films by KC luminaries.  She co-founded and fronted the cabaret act Alacartoona who was awarded an Inspiration Grant from ArtsKC.  Erin was also awarded a professional development grant from the Mid-America Arts Alliance and is a fellow, peer facilitator and workshop presenter for Artist INC, a cutting edge training seminar about the business of art designed for artists of all disciplines.  Her current project is Victor & Penny, a nationally touring guitar and ukulele duo playing “antique pop”, early jazz and clever original songs with Blue Man Group guitarist, Jeff Freling. Victor & Penny were 2014 Escape-To-Create artists-in-residence in Seaside, FL.  Erin was honored in KC Magazine’s 2012 “The 100”: People Who Make Life Better in KC.  She is proud to say she mis-spent her youth singing in a rock band. 


Grant Miller received his MFA in Drawing and Printmaking from Washington University in St. Louis. He has participated in several national shows, international shows and art fairs, which include the London Art Fair, NEXT Art Fair, SCOPE Basel & Miami, The Museum of Fine Arts at Florida State University, Byblos Art Gallery in Verona, Italy, and the AR Contemporary Gallery in Milan, Italy. He is currently represented by the Byron C. Cohen Gallery in Kansas City, and the Black & White Gallery in New York City. Grant has also participated in several artist residencies including the Urban Culture Project Studio Residency, Vermont Studio Residency, Artists’ Enclave at I-Park, Djerassi Residency, Millay Colony for the Arts, and the Cite Internationale des Arts Residency in Paris, France. In 2007, Grant received the Lighton International Artists Exchange Program travel grant. Grant is currently working as an artist in Kansas City, MO.

DWR Headshot 2014 yes


David Wayne Reed (Playwright/Director/Producer) Reed was a founding member of the notorious Late Night Theatre where he wrote Mother Trucker, Come Back to the 9 to 5 Dolly Parton Dolly Parton, The Show Formerly Known as Purple Rain, and Supermodels in Space in addition to playing over 50 roles while there. His history with Late Night Theatre is part of GLAMA (Gay and Lesbian Archives of Mid-America).  Recent shows include: Help Yourself, Mother Trucker 2: Ride On, White Nose Christmas and Bump (with collaborators Bess Wallerstein and Heidi Van) as well as his one-man show, Jolly Rancher. David has also appeared onstage at the Rep, Unicorn, Fishtank Performance Studio, Living Room, Seaside Repertory Theatre, and recently at the Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theatre Festival.  Reed was voted Best Actor: Reader’s Choice and Best Trouper in the Pitch Weekly in 2000 and Best Actor/Actress in 2008. Reed is an Arts KC Inspiration Grant recipient, and a 2013-2014 Charlotte Street Studio Resident.

Phil Shafer is a year 2000 graduate from the Kansas City Art Institute who majored in photography and new media. His artist energy is channeled in many ways. When he is not working as a designer for the Kansas City Life Sciences Research Center at the University of Kansas Medical Center, her runs his own art business under the name Sike Style Industries. Shafer works in 2-D design on walls and in print graphics for clients. He also creates fine art paintings and has been known to rock a party from behind the turntables from time to time.

Shafer's love of street art and graffiti has lead him to work with the Kansas City community as a muralist. Through murals, he transforms bland or vandalized surfaces with colorful, positive and uplifting imagery that the nearby community can be proud of.

Larry Thomas received a Master of Arts degree, and a Master of Fine Arts degree in printmaking from the University of Iowa. He has been in over seventy regional, national, and international exhibitions, including one-person, two-person, invitational, competitive, and group exhibitions. His work is in more than 50 corporate, university, and public collections, including the Daum Museum of Contemporary Art and the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, and numerous private collections. He is currently Professor and Chair of the Fine Arts Department at Johnson County Community College.