A Stellar Evening

The music faculty at Lone Star College-Kingwood promise an evening of spectacular performances when they present the college's annual A Stellar Evening.  This year the performance will be held in LSC-Kingwood Performing Arts Theatre, expanding the seating for this popular event.

The college is proud of its music faculty, and for good reason.  Dr. Todd Miller, professor of music/lead faculty at LSC-Kingwood, said "The college music department has so many wonderful faculty; we've worked diligently over the years to develop a group of musicians with this caliber of talent."

With the addition of these new talents, this year's concert promises to be even more delightful bringing back favorite performers and introducing many new ones.

New to the LSC-Kingwood family is Jay Whatley, associate professor of music.  Last year, he performed as a guest artist at A Stellar Evening and is happy to be more intimately involved this year.  He will be the collaborative pianist for A Stellar Evening.  He has an impressive resume and is in high demand as a collaborative artist, chamber musician and continuo player.  He has performed with many notable choral conductors at the state, regional and national levels.  In addition to his busy career as a performer and teacher, Whatley also serves as organist of Cypress Creek Christian Church, home of The Centrum and The Forum concert halls.  He will perform at Carnegie Hall in March 2009 along with Dr. Miller and former LSC-Kingwood faculty member Marion Russell-Dickson.

Another exciting addition to the LSC-Kingwood family is Anne Heath-Welch, voice faculty, who has spent the last 21 years living and performing in Europe.   She was principal soprano for English National Opera in London, the UK's second largest repertory opera company.  She has also worked as a principal soprano for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera and Opera Zuid (Holland) among others.  She will sing standard operatic arias for the evening.

Joining his wife, Heath-Welch, Gottfried Schiller, is also new voice faculty at LSC-Kingwood.  For many years he sang with the Kommische Opera Berlin.  At A Stellar Evening, he will delight the audience by singing Schubert songs in his native German.

Other exciting additions to this year's concert include, Keith Almstedt, a former LSC-Kingwood student who is now on faculty teaching guitar.  He recently finished his master's in guitar from the University of Akron.  Eric Fisher, double bass, is also new to the faculty and is no stranger to Kingwood.  A graduate of Kingwood High School, he has degrees from the University of North Texas and the University of Houston.

And known throughout Kingwood by music lovers, Dr. Miller will once again delight the audience with his performance.  He and Professor Whatley will preview a couple of works from their upcoming recital in Carnegie Hall, including Richard Faith's setting of the Edgar Allan Poe poem "Annabel Lee."

He said this concert will give the community a taste of many music genres, including piano, singers, guitar, double bass and trumpet to name a few.  "Stellar Evening is a showcase of the wonderful music faculty we have here at LSC-Kingwood.  It's a nice concert because it's not just one genre.  It's a potpourri of musical expressions."

Dr. Miller teaches voice, conducts the Chamber Singers and directs the Summer Opera Workshop at LSC-Kingwood.  In addition he is the artistic director and conductor of the Kingwood Chorale and Chamber Orchestra.  He recently returned from what he describes as every performers dream, singing at Carnegie Hall in New York City.  While on sabbatical from LSC-Kingwood in 2008, he performed solos twice with the Houston Symphony, in addition to solo performances with Da Camera Society and the Houston Chamber Choir.  In 2007, Dr. Miller accompanied the Kingwood Big Band, a group composed of students and community members, in their European trip to Italy and Montreaux, Switzerland, singing jazz standards from the American songbook.

A Stellar Evening will be held on Saturday, Oct. 11, 7:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. in the LSC-Kingwood Performing Arts theatre.  Tickets are $20, $5 for students, and include a delectable dessert reception immediately following the concert.   Patrons are welcome to meet and visit with the performers during the reception.  All proceeds benefits LSC-Kingwood's Fine Arts Scholarship Fund.

For general information about Lone Star College-Kingwood, call 281-312-1600 or visit our Web site at Kingwood.LoneStar.edu.

Lone Star College System consists of five colleges, including Cy-Fair, Kingwood, Montgomery, North Harris, and Tomball, six centers and the Lone Star College-University Center. With 49,250 students, it is the largest college system in the Houston area, and third largest community college district in Texas. To learn more, visit LoneStar.edu.