KUST/STAR concert showcases magic and alternative music

KUST and STAR are pairing up to bring a night of magic and alternative music to Scooter’s Thursday, Dec. 11.

The event is free for students and begins at 6 p.m. with a magic performance by St. Thomas alumnus and professional magician Matt Dunn. The show continues with performances by the Johnson Twins, Peter Wolf Crier and headlining band Halloween, Alaska.

KUST Promotions Director Matt Lichtfuss said this is the second time KUST has paired up with STAR for an on-campus concert.

“We put on a concert last spring … It turned out to be a huge success,” Lichtfuss said. “It showed us that there is a market for this kind of music on campus. Not everyone wants to hear Eric Hutchinson and Michelle Branch.”

According to STAR President Sandy Moran, KUST is organizing and promoting the event while STAR is funding 60 percent of the total cost.

“They are going to have different bands that a lot of people like,” Moran said. “I think it’s going to be a good event.”

Dunn graduated from St. Thomas in 2005 with a degree in entrepreneurship. According to his Web site, Dunn has been performing magic since he was 6 years old and has performed thousands of shows, including the Minnesota Twins end-of-season dinner.

The Johnson Twins play next, and fittingly, feature twins Patrick and Sam Johnson. The twins share singing duties, with Patrick on the violin and Sam on the accordion and bass guitar. Sara Horishnyk rounds out the group on percussion.

Peter Wolf Crier is next in the lineup with the indie/soul duo of Peter Pisano and Brian Moen. Guitarist/vocalist Pisano of The Wars of 1812 and drummer Moen of Laarks are fast emerging as one of the quality alternative bands in the Twin Cities.

Halloween, Alaska is a Minnesota-based electronic pop-rock band that will headline the show with an hour-long set. The band consists of James Diers (vocals/keyboard/guitar), Jacob Hanson (vocals/keyboard/guitar), David King (acoustic and electric drums) and Bill Shaw (bass guitar).

Lichtfuss said the event will showcase KUST’s identity as a college 200 radio station and pave the way for more concerts on-campus.

“It kind of fits what we are as a station, what we represent,” Lichtfuss said. “We’re a little counter-cultural, a little underground – alternative to what the mainstream is. [The event] is combining a couple things to create a unique experience.

“We’ve come a long way from where we were when we started. Hopefully we can continue to bring in performances on campus and be the ‘go-to people’ for having a finger on what is good music … When music is on campus, people should think KUST.”

Brent Fischer can be reached at bafischer@stthomas.edu