Meet the Celebrity Artists of Thea Foundation’s Blue Plate Special

As featured in the October Issue, Blue Plate Special –  on October 21 –  showcases eight Little Rock’s chefs including Mark Abernathy, Red Door; Gilbert Alaquinez, Kemuri; Steve Binotti, Petit & Keet; Peter Brave, Brave New Restaurant; James Hale, Capital Hotel; Payne Harding, Cache Restaurant; Kim Henderson, Heritage Catering; and Hannah Lavender, Lavender Bakes. In addition to wine pairings presented by Colonial Wines & Spirits for each dish, guests will also enjoy jazz music and a chance to mingle with four Central Arkansas artists.

Rodney Block — Musician/Entertainer (Photo by Fredrick Baltimore)

Nancy Nolan — Photographer (Photo by Henry Lanford)

Bryant Phelan — Handbag/Fashion Designer (Photo by Stephanie Parsley)

Bijoux Pighee — Vocalist/Entertainer (Photo by Dazzmin Murry)

Rodney Block: Rodney Block/Trumpeter, a Dumas native who has been thriving in the regional music scene for the past ten years released his seventh studio album, FANTASTIC BEATZ, in September 2017. Block, a trumpeter who has been featured and performed in various festivals and venues across the globe ranging from corporate to social, has built a niche in the genres of jazz and hip hop. Notable artists he has shared the stage with include The Temptations, Earth, Wind & Fire, Joe, Sugar Ray, Chrissette Michelle, Eric Benet, Whoodini, Conya Doss, Johnny Gill, Dwele, Jonathan Butler, Dave Hollister, Ellis and Delfayo Marsalis, Kirk Whalum, Layla Hathaway, Eric Roberson, Anthony David, Marsha Ambrosius, Diane Reeves, and The Yellowjackets.  Currently, Block is a frequent guest artist with hip-hop legend and icon, Doug E. Fresh.

Nancy Nolan: Nancy Nolan, commercial, interior and art photographer, has worked in the business for over 30 years. She has been featured in numerous national publications including Luxe, House BeautifulEssence, Inviting Arkansas, At Home in Arkansas, Traditional Home, Decór and Southern Living.  As one of the South’s premier visual artist, Nolan not only considers herself a photographer but a story teller, bringing to life the people and places she is fortunate enough to capture. Her passion, energy, creativity and commitment to each job is second to none. Based in Little Rock for the past 20 years, Nolan is constantly amazed at the creative people she is surrounded by who are always willing to open their doors and minds to new ideas.

Bryant Phelan: Bryant Phelan is an Arkansas native known for his handcrafted luxury leather goods. Phelan began his journey with leather design in his early teens after being inspired by the works of traditional Italian masters by way of a leather Venetian masquerade mask given to him by his mother, who is his greatest style inspiration. Of his brand, OFaolain, he says: “It’s a brand about personality. Taking portions of your character and putting a magnifying glass on them. I think we all have facets of ourself that we love to embody when we go out or dress up. That’s what I aim to imbue in my work: Personality. It’s all about relating to and loving yourself through art. This art is just wearable.” Bryant has runway shows each season in notable cities such as New York Fashion Week, Dallas, Houston, Nashville, LA and, of course, Little Rock and Northwest Arkansas. His work has been published and featured by ELLE, Nylon, Ellements, Shuba, Lucy’s, Dazed, Spirit and Flesh magazines among others.

Bijoux Pighee: Bijoux Pighee, a native of Little Rock, is a sultry, soul singer adept in various styles.  The daughter of West African parents, Bijoux grew up in a household exposed to differing genres of music including folk, classic rock and roll, makossa, country, and R&B. Pighee’s jovial spirit, endearing vocals, vibrant entertaining, and musical versatility make her a perfect artist for any event or atmosphere!

Thea Foundation’s Blue Plate Special is presented by Malvern National Bank. Proceeds benefit Thea Foundation and help support creative learning and arts education in Arkansas public schools. For more information and to purchase tickets:

Inviting Arkansas

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