It was a one-of-a-kind night of amazing music.

That’s the description of the scholarship fundraiser All-Star Concert on Jan. 26 at Stargazers Theatre by Colorado Springs Conservatory founder and spark plug Linda Weise.

She delighted the audience as she changed outfits to introduce performers and music from each of the Conservatory programs, from classical to songwriter, cowboy songs to heavy metal, opera and young singers. There were drama, art and dance students.

Students from the Conservatory’s 100-miles-served radius and school partners were there, along with board members, community supporters, parents, mentors and music lovers.

Joining the students on stage were special guests who had volunteered their talents on keyboards, guitars and violin and as singers: Thomas Dawson Jr., Joe Johnson, David Siegel, Wayne Wilkinson, Peter Tuff, The Reminders, Leo and the Lark, and Josh Franklin, who is now charting a Broadway career. “I’m forever grateful to my artist friends,” said Weise, as the evening quickly turned in a jam session.

Lots of laughter when Joe Johnson ripped into “Mississippi Queen” with the other musicians and signaled special guest noise providers at appropriate moments: Mike Callicrate and Kathy Dreiling on cowbells and Utilities CEO Aram Benyamin on triangle.

The evening had a surprise announcement. “I’m humbled to announce that we have an inspired and anonymous donor willing to match up to $50,000 in funds raised for scholarships,” said Weise. (

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