University Relations and Communications

Successful piano student/teacher presents senior recital

April 8, 2010



Department of Music, 657-2350
Dan Carter, University Relations, 657-2269


Kelly Vowell’s free recital includes works from Beethoven to Schumann


MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — When Kelly Vowell is not busy learning about piano performance, she’s busy teaching it to others.


Kelly Vowell

Next week, the Billings resident and standout Montana State University Billings student will showcase the extent of that talent at her senior recital, set for Saturday, April 17 at 7:30 p.m. in Cisel Recital Hall. It is free and open to the public.


Raised in Billings, Vowell began studying piano at the age of 12. She immediately fell in love with it and progressed rapidly and by the time she was 16, she auditioned for entrance into the MSU Billings piano performance program and was accepted to study with Professor Dorothea Cromley. She received dual high school and college credit for the coursework she completed through the University Connections program.


Over the next five years, Vowell received a number of music scholarships that allowed her to devote a large portion of her academic year and her entire summers to practicing the piano. While studying with Cromley, Vowell competed in several regional, national and international piano competitions including the Coeur d’Alene Young Artist Competition, the Snowy Range Piano Competition, the Lee Biennial Competition, and the International Liszt Competition. She took second place twice in the state division of the Music Teachers National Association Young Artist Competition.


Vowell has held joint and solo recitals in the community and has performed and sung with the MSU Billings chamber singers multiple times at the university. She also served as an adjudicator for the Billings Homeschool Music Festival and enjoys contributing to the musical program in her church. She recently joined a local classic rock band, Common Ground, as a keyboardist and has enjoyed playing for fundraisers and community events.


In 2005, Vowell started a private studio which has grown to nearly 20 students. She has enjoyed working with students of all ages, including adults, and has volunteered to teach students with special needs. She provides her students with monthly performance classes in addition to several recitals during the academic year. Her students have played and placed in honors recitals, festivals, and various community events.


Vowell will finish requirements for her bachelor’s of arts degree in piano performance this spring and plans to pursue a master’s degree in Piano Performance & Pedagogy.


Her senior recital will consist of works by Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, Liszt, Sinestera and Schumann. 


For more information on the recital contact the MSU Billings Department of Music at 657-2350.