2019 Special Guests

More than Music

Besides music all day, you can hear from impactful speakers, hilarious comedians, kids performers, and others throughout the three days at Alive. There will also be seminars for students, a chance to hear from artists in a Q&A, and more. Check out our special guests below that will be appearing at Alive 2019.

John Crist 

With over 1 billion video views, comedian and viral sensation John Crist is the next big thing in standup comedy. Whether you know him from viral videos like “Millennial International,” “Road Rage in the Church Parking Lot,” or “Every Parent at Disney,” Crist has solidified his comedic prowess with sold out shows from coast to coast. His most recent tour—The Human Being Tour—completely sold out in the Fall of 2018. Crist performed in front of 100,000 people across 55 cities throughout the tour.

Nine years in, Crist has shared the stage with some of the best in the business, including Dave Chappelle, Jeff Foxworthy, Seth Meyers, Larry the Cable Guy, Trevor Noah, Dana Carvey, Adam Carolla, Chris D’Elia, Anjelah Johnson, Tim Hawkins, and Louie Anderson. Anderson, named one of Comedy Central’s Top 100 Comedians of All Time, says of Crist, “It’s only a matter of time until John Crist is a household name. He is so likable and his stand-up is top notch.” Tim Hawkins, who Crist has performed with over 100 times says, “This guy ain’t no opener. John Crist is the real deal.” 

“My favorite part of touring is meeting people from different areas of the country and hearing how my comedy has impacted them or their favorite part of my act,” says Crist.

Named as one of the “Top Five Comics to Watch,” Crist is no stranger to accolades. He was a finalist in Comedy Central’s “Up Next Comedy Competition,” a finalist in the Comedy Works “New Faces Contest,” and named to the Burbank Comedy Festival’s “Best of the Fest.”

Crist has created and starred in several videos for BuzzFeed and has made several appearances on the Bob and Tom Show. He has been featured on ESPN, Sports Illustrated, US Weekly, USA Today, Buzzfeed, Laughs on Fox, The Today Show, Huffington Post, The Bleacher Report, 9Gag, HLN, Men’s Humor, Relevant Magazine, The Adam Carolla Show, WGN, Cloyd Rivers, Old Row, Cracked, The Catalyst Conference, The Nerdist Network, TBN, and The Daily Wire. He was even once a voice actor on the popular children’s radio show Adventures in Odyssey.

Crist’s tour schedule keeps him busy, typically performing in churches, comedy clubs and theaters. “It wasn’t always like that,” Crist says. “One time when I was first starting out, I did an open mic at a Chili’s. It was traumatizing.” To date, one of the most unique shows Crist has ever performed was a comedy tour for the troops in Middle East. “It was surreal. It was just me and a tent full of soldiers at this military base on the border of Kuwait and Iraq. No mic, no stage, no nothing. I was standing on a wooden crate. It was probably 120 degrees in there. It was comedy in its purest form.”

When asked where he finds the inspiration to write jokes, Crist says, “Shoot, I grew up in the deep south, my dad is a pastor, and I was the third of eight homeschooled children. My first job was at Chick-fil-A. Coming from a background like that, how do you NOT write jokes?!”

Whether its Church Hunters, Celebrity Pastor Fantasy Draft or his most recent work, Virtual Reality Church, Crist’s humor sometimes focuses on the nuance of the local church. Of the church, Crist says, “Man, I love the local church. Growing up serving at my dad’s church, I know the effect that a healthy, vibrant local church can have on the community. If I ever come across as critical, it’s because I love the church and I wish for so much more from it. I think the local church is our only hope for change in America, that said… we do some weird stuff :)”

Sadie Robertson 

In late 2014, Sadie Robertson arrived at a crossroads. Fresh off a runner-up finish on Season 19 of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars, the then-17-year-old saw her life swirling into a bubble of fame and glitz and paparazzi; it was fun, yes, but also she recalls, a decidedly non-normal and uncomfortable existence. “People looked at me differently,” the Louisiana native first introduced to the world as a star of A&E’s Duck Dynasty, says. “I wasn’t sure I liked the fame. I don’t see myself like that.” A devoted woman of strong Christian faith, Robertson wanted to use this opportunity to make an impact on the world.

“My passion is to speak, to write, to encourage,” Robertson says proudly. And with more than 5 million followers on her various social platforms, the young woman saw she had a direct line of communication to her peers. Specifically, she recognized she could be positive voice to those in dire need of an inspiring, non-judgmental presence in their lives. Now, in only a few years, she’s become one of the most prominent voices of her generation. Whether as an author or motivational speaker, the 21-year-old speaks with profound grace and clarity.  Last year, the author of the New York Times best-seller Live Original: How the Duck Commander Teen Keeps It Real and Stays True to Her Values embarked on a 16-city “Live Original Tour,” where she met thousands of teens and their families and spread her message of self-confidence and positivity.

Trip Lee 

Trip Lee is an author, teacher, hip-hop artist, and thought leader. A pastor in Atlanta, he regularly preaches and teaches at Christian conferences and events, and has performed his music for thousands of listeners around the world.

In his first book, The Good Life, Lee points to the abundant life available only in Christ – a life beyond anything the world can offer. His second book, Rise, calls a younger generation not to wait to follow God, but to get up and live now.

As a hip-hop artist, Lee’s music has received critical acclaim, while reaching a large and growing audience. He’s won a Stellar award and been nominated for several Dove Awards. His last three albums have debuted at #1 on the Billboard Gospel charts, and his most recent album, Rise, debuted at #2 on the Billboard Rap charts and #16 on the Billboard 200.

Trip’s deepest desire in his writing, teaching, and performing is to declare the goodness and glory of Jesus Christ.

David Nasser 

David Nasser was born in Iran but left the country with his family at age 9 during the Iranian Revolution. After almost a year in exile, his family moved to America. At age 18, he rejected his Muslim heritage and became a Christian. He founded his ministry D. Nasser Outreach (DNO) in his early twenties and it quickly grew as it partnered with other influential organizations such as the Billy Graham Association, Youth Specialities, and Student Life. In 2010, David planted Christ City Church in Birmingham, Alabama, where he would serve as the Lead Pastor for the next four years.

In 2014, God introduced a new chapter into David’s life – overseeing Liberty University’s Office of Spiritual Development. He now oversees a team that strengthens the theological foundation of the student body and its leaders through gatherings such as Convocation (the world’s largest weekly gathering of young people) and Campus Community. He also steers the discipleship process—seeing students coming to Christ, growing in their faith, and mobilizing to reach the world for Christ.

David continues to be one of the nation’s forefront speakers, speaking to over 700,000 people each year using his God-given ability to reach the high tech, attention-lacking culture of Generation Next. The heart-cry of David’s ministry is to effectively present the same message, the Gospel of Christ, using fresh, post-modern methods.

David currently resides in Lynchburg, Virginia, with his wife Jennifer and their daughter, Grace. Their son, Rudy, and his wife, Rachel, reside in Memphis, Tennessee.

Exiles 

Exiles is an urban dance team that emerged in 2017 from the small town of Coolidge, Arizona, when leader Anthony Cordova branched out from his first creation, “United Dance Company”, with an all-guys team given the name “Exiles”. Under Anthony’s leadership, Exiles took 1st Place at “Breakthrough Dance Competition” in Stockton, California. After that, they continued competing amongst many other elite dance crews in the USA Hip Hop Dance Championship taking 2nd Place and then 5th in the World. This caught the attention of a producer of NBC’s “World of Dance” Season 3 (executive produced by and starring Jennifer Lopez) who asked Exiles to audition. Exiles made it onto the show competing against some of the best dance crews in the world.

Exiles mission statement is “Alone we can reach a few, but United we can reach a nation.” Exiles was established with the purpose of reaching out to members within their own community by identifying with the youth of Coolidge through dance, but has developed into so much more. Exiles will always stay true to the central purpose of why they dance, to shed the light, hope, truth, and love found only in Jesus Christ, through the Grace of God.

Exiles consists of dancers Anthony Cordova, Mike Holmes, Sean Perry, Carlos “SparXz” Caraballo, Efrain Villa, and Jef Amoranto.

Pedro LaTorre 

Pedro LaTorre is not your typical author. He never set out to write a book or speak to millions of people. Prior to Pedro finishing middle school he had seen two failed marriages. Much of his early years were full of challenges that he chose to see as opportunities. By high school Pedro had caught the attention of several professional baseball scouts. His first at bat his senior season changed the trajectory of his future. In one swing of the bat he hit a home run and tore his rotator simultaneously. His faith was shaken and his potential was now a thing of the past. Confusion and self-doubt hit him like a ton of bricks.

Through many trying days he allowed this to both prune and propel him into a new season of life. At the age of twenty Pedro became the drummer for International Recording Artist KJ-52. Pedro later went on to play with several artists including: Tedashi, Anthem Lights, Rhema Soul, Group 1 Crew and many others. Pedro feels fortunate to have been inspired under world renowned communicator Reggie Dabbs and other great men to grow Pedro’s heart for God and people. He has been speaking to students, leaders, and churches for over ten years.

Pedro and his bride Jessica serve as the lead pastors of rest | LA, a growing missional house church community based out of Los Angeles, CA. They have one handsome son named Justice, who is three and a dog named Demi who sheds incessantly.

Dustin Nickerson 

A Seattle native now suffering in Southern California, Dustin Nickerson is an in demand comic on the rise. He’s been seen Laughs on Fox, the PBS Comedy Hour, Hulu and can regularly be heard on Sirius Radio XM, Rooftop Comedy, and the Darren Streblow Show.

Dustin describes himself as “the world’s most average person” but is far from it when on stage. He brings you into his life through his jokes about the struggles of parenting, marriage, and be generally annoyed by most people.

At just 32 years old, Dustin has been married for 13 years and has three kids! This helps makes Dustin truly one of the most unique voices in the comedy scene.

Brad Brown Magic 

Brad Brown is a Christian entertainer who travels from coast to coast delighting audiences with his unique blend of comedy and magic. More than mere entertainment, Brad uses his programs to present the gospel of Jesus Christ.

He got his start in magic as a child, when he found a box of magic apparatus in his grandmother’s attic. “Like many kids, I went through a phase where I liked magic,” says Brad, “but I just never outgrew it.” After becoming a Christian in the seventh grade, Brad became involved with the Fellowship of Christian Magicians, and started presenting the Gospel through his magic performances.

Brad continued to hone his skills in performing and ministry through his college years. He directed the Georgetown College Baptist Student Union’s creative performing arts teams. He also used his magic in ministry while serving as a summer missionary for several years. After graduation, his ministry continued to expand.

Later, Brad earned a master’s degree in Theological Studies from Liberty University. Now, he works as a Christian entertainer in partnership with churches, camps, conferences, and other Christian organizations across the nation. He has also taken his magic on tour overseas numerous times.

Now Brad is a full-time Christian entertainer, using his comedy and magic to share the love of Jesus across the country and around the world.

Outback Ray 

Outback Ray has been performing animal shows since 1987 and has had a passion for animals since he was a child. He has appeared on television, radio talk shows and has trained animals for commercials. Not only does he do shows, he also breeds, trains and studies exotic animals. Through his show, Outback Ray shares his knowledge and the passion he has for exotic animals with his audience. He captivates you with his unique “family”, all while sharing fascinating facts about each one. Learning will be fun and exciting while you hold and cuddle with his amazing animals.