The Staff

connections for Rhea Carmon, Marcus Carmon, and Elijah Cruise

the fifth woman - the 5th woman

executive director

Rhea Carmon, also known by her stage moniker, RheaSunshine, has been writing and performing spoken word poetry and slam for 19 years.  Her poems are powerfully motivating with an emphasis on her own personal struggles and how others can overcome.  She is the director of the annual 5th Woman Stage Presentation (2014 - 2018), a producer for Carmon Sense Productions, and coordinator for the 5th Woman Workshop series.  Rhea has self-published 3 chapbooks, released 3 spokenword CDs and is currently working on her 4th book and video project that tells the story of her journey with Multiple Sclerosis.  The 5th Woman, her signature work, is an ever evolving poetic installment that has been built by a national involvement of community organizations and poets.


INSTAGRAM: @rheasunshinepoetry

Assistant director/music production

Elijah Cruise is a professional musician, producer and vocalist who currently fronts the pop project SADBOY. He has played keys for multiple projects, such as The Fifth Woman at Bonnaroo and Erick Baker at The Bijou in Knoxville. He is also fortunate to work in the congregational music sector with OneLife Church. Elijah is School of Rock Knoxville’s very active vocal instructor, however he also teaches introduction to keys, bass, guitar and songwriting. These skills have made him a sought after performer and teacher in the Knoxville area and beyond.

INSTAGRAM @elijahcruise


carmon sense_photo.jpg

marketing director/producer

Marcus Carmon is the Executive Director of Carmon Sense Productions. He has been producing videos, plays, internet content and more for over 6 years. Marcus has produced content for East Tennessee PBS, Blackberry Farms, the Knoxville Arts & Culture Alliance, and many more. He is the reigning Haiku champion for Knoxville Poetry Slam and he is looking to release his first book of poetry soon. Most recently, Marcus, whose goes by the stage moniker Carmon Sense, hosted the 2019 How Stage at Bonnaroo. There is nothing this artist cannot accomplish and he is making his space and letting his light shine in venues all over the country.