Category Archives: Gigs

Variety Club

I am so delighted to announce that I am the next director of the Variety Children’s Choir, one of the many performing arts activities of the Variety, the Children’s Charity of Saint Louis.

Variety serves a number of children and teenagers in many ways.  One of the ongoing projects is the school-year chorus, with several performances each year.  The group is composed of students with physical and developmental disabilities in addition to other student volunteers.

I’ll be adding Thursday evening rehearsals to my portfolio of activities starting in August! And I couldn’t be more pleased!!



My favorite photo . . . EVER . . . of me conducting a choir . . . .

This is from my final concert with the Jacomo Chorale in Blue Springs, Missouri, February 1999.

Downtown Rotary

Two wonderful Webster students and I appeared on Thursday at the weekly Downtown Rotary Club luncheon at the Missouri Athletic Club.   We were the post-Valentine’s Day entertainment in a lighter program.  I’m grateful to my colleague Beth Russell for inviting us!

Some Strauss, Puccini, Novello, Lerner & Loewe, and Kerrigan and Lowdermilk filled the room.

Thanks to club photographer Doug Russell for permission to post some of photos from the day:






Year-end letter 2017

Dear friends and family around the world,

Greetings as we approach Christmastide 2017, and as we celebrate the return of the sun this week with the winter solstice.

We heralded the new light of the winter season on Thursday this week by celebrating the life of my father, V. Richard Carter, who died on December 17.  His death was the result of a vile and evil acute myeloid leukemia.  We had six weeks and three days from the first mention of the illness to his last breath.

Pop’s passing shadows the rest of the year.  But as usual, I should report that this year has been filled with travel to various points around the country, a great deal of theatre, and (new this year) a growing private voice studio with wonderfully talented students.

I continue at Webster University as Professor & Chair in the Department of Music. We welcomed a new colleague this semester, and said ‘so long’ to a retiring senior faculty member in Spring 2017.  We also enjoyed a full-semester visiting scholar from Vienna this past 16 weeks. Our new programs continue to grow, and every day is a new adventure.

The loss of my father is counter-balanced this year by the birth, many weeks premature, of my first great-niece, Lily Riffle.  She is now a healthy and hearty six+ months, and a delight to hold and carry and feed, and then give back to her parents. Her parents, Blayne and Sarah Riffle, were married last year.  Blayne’s sister married this year, and so we now have Jimmy and Kristen Lachance in the family as well.

I started the year in Hong Kong, which was my big trip for the year.  But I do know already that 2018 is going to bring some fun international travel!

Regarding the growth of my private studio: a local children’s voice specialist closed her studio, and I inherited a number of Muny Kids and Muny Teens.  These talented students are a delight and joy to teach!  And my long-term student Aaron was selected for the National Honor Choir and a regional honor ensemble as well, in addition to All-State Choir for the second year in a row.  Meanwhile, Spencer is out on tour with The King and I.

I have new neighbors all around.  A young couple bought and rehabbed the house just of me this year, while a different couple, and their daughter Olivette, moved in just north of me. And then just a few weeks ago the Boo Radley house two doors up sold (at a high price, thanks be to god) to yet another young couple.  Suddenly I’m the old-man-in-the-middle.  But I love indeed the safety of new neighbors, and the care that these folks are taking with their own property.

I ended the school year with a guest conducting gig, leading our Chamber Singers in two numbers at the annual concert we call A Gift to the City.  Here’s a sound file of my own setting of Thomas Hardy’s poem ‘The Oxen,’ written 16 years ago for Grace & Holy Trinity Cathedral, Kansas City: 

So we enter Christmastide with one more week left in 2017.  The events of the year-end are life-changers, and truth be told I’m a bit at sea right now.  I’ll regroup over the next weeks, and look forward to a sabbatical in Fall 2018.

The annual remembrance of the birth of Christ brings us hope for a better 2018, in our own lives and in the wider world.  May it be so.

P.S. — stay tuned for the year-in-review photo montage next week!

Performances to attend

My fall performances-to-attend schedule is coming into focus, and I’ve purchased quite a few tickets in the past few days.

September 11 — our own jazz series

September 12 — South Pacific at Stages

September 13 — Curious Incident at Rep

September 15 — Harry Potter at SLSO

September 17 — Daniel Schene, piano, at Webster

September 18 — Paul DeMarinis Ensemble at Webster

September 24 — my own studio recital at Webster, and then a faculty recital that evening

September 25 — jazz series at Webster

September 29 — [title of show] at WebCo

September 30 — Lizzie at New Line

October 2 — Debby Lennon jazz concert at Webster

October 6 — Chicago Symphony Orchestra, in Chicago!

October 8 — Webster University Orchestra

October 9 — faculty recital at Webster

October 11 — The Bodyguard at the Fox

October 12 — Spring Awakening at Stray Dog

October 15 — two events at Webster

October 16 — Wind Ensemble at Webster

October 17 — faculty recital at Webster

October 18 — Muny Magic at the Sheldon

October 20 — Hamlet at the Rep

October 21 — The Wizard of Oz by Variety Club at the Touhill

October 22 — SLSO

October 30 — Webster University Chamber Singers pre-conference concert

I shan’t even think yet about November and December.

And there’s also five trips in October and November, which means I’m missing some other things here in town!


From Wednesday, at the Missouri state capitol building in Jefferson City:


Read the full report of the day!

[feature photo at top = a bear (on the Great Seal of the State of Missouri) serves as a finial on the staircase descending from the Missouri Governor’s office]

More photos:mca-day-1 mca-day-11