Baritone Charles Robert Stephens is one of my favorite local singers: His rich yet clear voice is regularly heard around Puget Sound, and his Mahler “Songs of a Wayfarer” with Second City Chamber Series a few years ago was a thing of beauty. This Friday he performs love songs of Brahms and Schumann, as well as selections from Viennese operetta, for “Lieberabend,” a benefit concert for Agnus Dei Lutheran Church in Gig Harbor.
Stephens, about whom I wrote two years ago, gave up a flourishing 20-year opera career in New York when the events of 9/11 caused him and his family to rethink. They moved clear across to country to Fox Island, where Stephens now bases himself to sing with companies up and down the West Coast (Seattle Pro Music, the Bellingham Festival and so on.)
Friday’s concert at the Peacock Hill church is a celebration of Agnus Dei’s 30th anniversary – and a benefit to fix the church’s kitchens. The concert begins 8 p.m., and is preceded by a five-course autumn dinner. Tickets for dinner/concert are $50, concert alone is $15. 10511 Peacock Hill, Gig Harbor. 253-851-6222, www.agnusdeilutheran.org