Music at Emerge!

At the heart of every community is music and art—its emotional pulse reminds us that we’re alive. We’re inviting community members to share their music and spoken word at our afternoon open mic session and we’re featuring several trans and nonbinary performers in our evening musical showcase. 

Evening Performers

  • Emcee: Michelle Matlock (she/her) is a performer, teacher, producer, director and thriving creative. Most recently, she created and played the main character, “Ladybug” for Cirque Du Soleil’s touring show OVO. While with Cirque, she visited 13 countries and performed in over 2000 shows! She is a native of Washington State, where she studied theater at Western Washington University for three years and then went on to graduate from the National Shakespeare Conservatory in New York City. She spent 15 years in New York acting, clowning and creating shows while working with the Big Apple Circus, Circus Amok and the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus. Her critically acclaimed solo show, The Mammy Project, has been produced several times in New York City and all over North and South America. Currently, Michelle lives in Tacoma, WA and is the founder of Circle Up Productions, a live entertainment and performance art education company focused on producing a blend of theater and circus arts shows, leading performance arts workshops and curating special events. Visit for more information. 
  • Sam I’Am (they/them) is a nonbinary theater maker & Drag King. A three-time Bumbershoot performer, Sam just finished a month long run of the musical They/Them that they wrote and expanded after Bumbershoot 2018. They’re currently working on expanding their jewelry line of pronoun pins ( and plans to travel the US performing out of a tiny home they built themselves. 
  • Bethany “B.Lyte” Montgomery from Tacoma, Washington, is an Eastern Washington University (EWU) alumna. She attended EWU on a full athletic scholarship for basketball. She underwent heart surgery in June 2016, cutting her playing career short and forcing her to retire from the game she loved earlier than anticipated. She triumphed during this challenging time and earned a Bachelor’s degree (Marketing) in 3 years and a Master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA) in 1 year. Now that Bethany has completed her formal education, she is pursuing her passion of poetry. She envisioned the concept of Power 2 the Poetry while driving back to EWU from her home town of Tacoma after Thanksgiving 2017. She has always been a writer and used poetry as a way to express herself. She believes everyone should live out their dreams and do what they love. Power 2 The Poetry is an extension of Bethany’s heart and soul. Her life’s purpose is to eliminate all the darkness in the world by spreading light and love through the power of the tongue.
  • Amanda aka Chewy Chavez (he, him/they, them. please switch it up!) is a trans hombre-mujer singer songwriter of Filipinx, Mexican, and Salvadoran descent. Chewy’s style has roots in punk rock, Latinx rock, and Mexican boleros. Chewy strives to make sense of his Latinx, queer, and mixed race identities through music and bridge his communities of origin. Chewy combines their loud impassioned vocals and electric uke as a way to (re)claim space n demand to be heard!

  • Claire Michelle (she /her) and her band perform indie-rock with an alternative vibe.