To the ear, Flame sounds like any other band. With their powerful vocals, smooth harmonies and a rich array of instruments, the 9-person cover band from Gloversville, NY, seems like nothing but a talented group of musicians. But one thing does set them apart: each member happens to have a disability.
Named for the Special Olympics torch, Flame was born at a 2003 talent show put on by Lexington, an agency that supports people with developmental disabilities. Michelle King won the contest with her singing and expressed a desire to start a band. Lexington held open auditions and others joined King.
Like many bands, Flame started small as a recreational band within the agency and gradually gained momentum outside of Lexington. Today, Flame is known and celebrated worldwide for their music and inspirational message. Flame’s mission is to change the world through music. They inspire people with disabilities and give hope to them and their families – hope that they can do great things and live a fun and fulfilling life. Flame’s performances help change how the public perceives people with disabilities and increase the awareness and acceptance of all people, regardless of their differences.
Flame has a busy schedule and performs more than 70 times per year, touring the greater Northeast area and beyond in a custom bus. Flame gives concerts at national and statewide conventions, corporate conferences, civic events, schools, dances and private parties. Their repertoire includes more than 100 classic rock, pop, country and blues songs from the past 50 years, as well as some original tracks. In 13 years of work, they have produced five albums and a single.
A segment about Flame aired on Good Morning America in 2009 and People magazine ran a two-page spread about them in October 2010. They have performed at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the House of Blues in Cleveland, Ohio; New York’s Apollo Theater; Harvard Law School; the Parthenon in Athens, Greece and ; the 2009 Special Olympics. Lead Singer Michelle King; and the sang at the funeral of Eunice Kennedy Shriver, founder of the Special Olympics.
The musicians of Flame have disabilities including autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, blindness and paralysis, but that doesn’t hold them back. They do what they love and change the world along the way.
The Paul Nigra Center for Creative Arts is proud to be Flame’s home.
If you would like to book Flame for your next event or for more information, contact:
Maria Nestle, Flame Manager
Lexington – Fulton County Chapter, NYSARC, Inc
Tel: 518 661-9932
Cell: 518 844-5264