Kingwood Big Band Returns Triumphant from European Tour

Kingwood Big Band returned from its European tour elated at their enthusiastic reception and jazzed about the year ahead.  The band, composed of men and women from the Kingwood area, traveled with family and friends through two countries to perform for an international audience.

Dr. Linda Stegall, President of Lone Star College-Kingwood said, "It is very rare that a community college would be invited to participate in a Jazz Festival in Europe, so it is truly a testament to the fantastic talent in our area and the leadership of Jim Stubbs, director of bands and professor of music.  I am very proud of our entire music and drama program at Lone Star College-Kingwood and believe that the wonderful talent we have with the Jazz Band will only continue to bring more positive visibility to all of our fine arts programs."

Professor Stubbs was amazed at the opportunities that have come the band's way.  "Our band has only been together three years, so we've never done anything like this before, it was great!"   The band performed in Rome, Assisi, Italy and at the prestigious Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.

In Rome, the Mississippi Jazz Club was the band's first venue.  Stubbs said the club, located in the basement of an old building, was the perfect setting for a jazz band.  Rebecca Riley, dean of arts and humanities at Lone Star College-Kingwood, attended the performance in Rome and was thrilled with their reception, "That small space filled with the sound of the horns and the rhythm section, and in minutes, the place was hoppin'!  At the break, spectators were calling their friends on their cell phones and telling them to hurry over before the second set."

The band's next stop was at the Assisi Music Festival.  The concert was held in the main piazza in front of the Temple of Minerva.  "Assisi is a very beautiful, historic city, filled with pilgrims and tourists from around the world.  The square where we performed was completely filled--we felt like celebrities," relayed Stubbs.  

This was the first year jazz was included at this festival and the Kingwood Big Band has already been invited back for next year's festival.  Dr. Stegall was fortunate to catch the bands performance in Assisi.  She describes the setting, in a historic square, as magnificent. "Jim Stubbs and the vocalists were all wonderful.  I have to say that seeing the band play in Assisi was one of my proudest moments as president of Lone Star College-Kingwood."  

On the shores of Lake Geneva, the Montreux Jazz Festival is one of the oldest and best known festivals in Europe and draws approximately a quarter of a million visitors with bands representing all types of music.  

This was the big time and the band delivered their best performance to the most appreciative audience.  Riley said, "For me personally, the trip was a source of tremendous pride.  My priorities for the arts programs at Kingwood have always been predicated on the notion that community colleges can provide access to the arts for a wide audience, while still creating ensembles that set the highest standards for performance.  The next few years will be very exciting for the arts at Lone Star College-Kingwood!"

The Kingwood Big Band, founded in September 2004, is a group of local musicians dedicated to the performance of the finest music of the big band genre. The band was organized under the sponsorship of Lone Star College-Kingwood and the Lone Star College System.  Performances are held regularly during the school year for the community.

The music program at Lone Star College-Kingwood is designed to prepare students to earn an Associates of Arts degree and transfer to a four year university.  But the college also reaches out to the community by encouraging local citizens to participate in music classes and performing ensembles to enhance their skills and the culture of the community.  

For those interested in music, arts, or other programs at Lone Star College-Kingwood, choose from daytime, evening, weekend or online classes. Credit classes are available on the weekend at the EMCID Center or in the evening at Atascocita or Cleveland High Schools. Lone Star College-Kingwood has a full lineup of exciting courses ready when you are. Whether your future includes training for a new career, updating job skills or transferring to a four-year university, the faculty and staff at Kingwood can help guide you on the road to success.

Choose from daytime, evening, weekend or online classes. Credit classes are available on the weekend at the EMCID Center or in the evening at Atascocita and Cleveland High Schools. Lone Star College-Kingwood has a full lineup of exciting courses ready when you are. Whether your future includes training for a new career, updating job skills or transferring to a four-year university, we can help guide you on the road to success.

Register now for best course selection. Fall credit registration continues through Saturday, Aug. 25 with classes beginning Aug. 27. For more information on Lone Star College-Kingwood, visit kingwood.lonestar.edu or call 281-312-1600. 

The Lone Star College System is among the largest and fastest growing community college districts in Texas. It comprises Lone Star College-North Harris, Lone Star College-Kingwood, Lone Star College–Tomball, Lone Star College–Montgomery, Lone Star College–CyFair, six satellite centers and The University Center. For more information about Lone Star College System and its programs, visit www.lonestar.edu or call 832-813-6500.