Vincent Varvel and Stella Markou launch DUC Chamber Music Series

Sept. 12 performance to span music of four centuries

Guitarist Vincent Varvel and soprano Stella Markou will launch the Danforth University Center Chamber Concert Series Sept. 12.

Guitarist Vincent Varvel and soprano Stella Markou will launch the fall Danforth University Center Chamber Music Series at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 12.

Stella Markou

The performance, which will take place in the Goldberg Formal Lounge, will feature songs spanning four centuries, including works by Henry Purcell (1659-95), George Frideric Handel (1685-1759), Enrique Granados (1867-1916), Heitor Villa-Lobos (1887-1959) and George Gershwin (1898-1937).In addition, the program will highlight My Beloved Is Mine, a 2007 composition by WUSTL’s Martin Kennedy, assistant professor of music in Arts & Sciences.

Varvel, instructor in guitar, was born and raised in St. Louis. He studied piano, clarinet and organ before picking up the guitar at age 16.

As a student at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, Varvel performed with Michael Brecker, Peter Erskine, Dan Gottlieb and other jazz greats. He since has toured the United States and Europe with various ensembles in addition to leading his own jazz group performing his original compositions.

Markou is director of vocal studies at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, where she also directs its Opera Theatre productions. She has performed as a guest artist with numerous companies, including the Union Avenue Opera, the Masterworks Chorale and the American Chamber Chorale.

Markou recently opened an international Maria Callas exhibit for the Hellenic Parliament Foundation and the Consulate General of Greece. Her work can be found on the SEAMUS and MSR record labels.

Subsequent concerts in the Chamber Music Series will feature saxophonist Adrianne Honnold and Chamber Project St. Louis (Oct. 24), the Missouri Woodwind Quintet (Nov. 7) and violinist Silvian Iticovici and pianist Richard Katz (Dec. 4).

All performances are free and open to the public.

The Danforth University Center is located at 6475 Forsyth Blvd.

The Chamber Music Series is sponsored by the Department of Music in Arts & Sciences.

For more information, call (314) 935-5566 or email

Soprano Stella Markou performing the second movement of Villa-Lobos’ Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5 with the UMSL Cello Choir last spring at the Touhill Performing Arts Center, University of Missouri, St. Louis. Directed by Kurt Baldwin.