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home : education : schools January 16, 2019

10/23/2018 1:16:00 PM
Starry Nights to return to Sisters
Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt will perform at Starry Nights on Tuesday, January 29 at Sisters High School to benefit Sisters Schools Foundation. photo provided
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Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt will perform at Starry Nights on Tuesday, January 29 at Sisters High School to benefit Sisters Schools Foundation. photo provided

The Sisters Starry Nights Benefit Concert Series returns with "An Acoustic Evening with Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt" on Tuesday, January 29, at 7:30 p.m. in the Sisters High School Auditorium.

These two musical legends, longtime friends and frequent collaborators, will join forces for a performance where they alternate songs from their respective careers. Their distinctive voices, compelling storytelling and witty wordplay will be memorable in this intimate format.

Starry Nights benefit concerts have raised over $1 million for the Sisters Schools Foundation since the first show in 1997. After being an annual event for over a decade, the fundraising event's format changed due to changes in the music industry and in the lives of organizers, Jeri Fouts, Susan Arends and Novella Swisher.

Now, concerts are scheduled as the opportunity arises. The most recent show featured Karla Bonoff at The Belfry in 2016.

"We will do shows when the time's right and the artists are available," Fouts told The Nugget.

This January is one of those times, and Starry Nights veterans Lovett and Hiatt are heading to Sisters.

A Grammy Award-winning singer, composer and actor, Lyle Lovett is one of music's most treasured and iconic performers. He has broadened the definition of American music, fusing elements of country, swing, jazz, folk, gospel and blues in a manner that has earned him legions of fans and critical accolades. Lyle last appeared at Starry Nights with his band in 2006.

John Hiatt, who appeared at Starry Nights in 2000 and 2005, is renowned for his gritty and soulful vocals, wry humor, and prolific songwriting. His songs have been covered by musicians from Bonnie Raitt and the Neville Brothers to Joe Cocker and Rosanne Cash. With 11 Grammy nominations and 24 albums to his name, he was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and is a past recipient of the Americana Music Association's Lifetime Achievement Award.

"We are thrilled to welcome Lyle Lovett and John Hiatt back to Sisters as they kick off their 2019 tour with our Starry Nights show" said Fouts. "The audience is in for a unique and wonderfully entertaining evening as these two brilliant artists and old friends sit side by side and share songs that people love and the stories that inspired them. Their performance, infused with humor and heart, makes you feel like you're sitting in on something very special."

Doors open at 6 p.m., and guests can enjoy music by Sisters High School students and treats prepared by the Sisters High School Culinary Arts students. Students will also participate in the event as technical crew assistants working with the artists' professional team, ushers, and masters of ceremonies.

Starry Nights was born when drastic budget cuts due to tax-limiting ballot measures threatened programs at public schools across the state in 1996. Organized and staffed by volunteers, Starry Nights produced its first concert in 1997 and the series has been the major source of funding for the Sisters School District ever since. To date, the series has raised more than $1.3 million dollars in net funds and provided support for a wide range of classroom and co-curricular programs and activities at Sisters elementary, middle and high schools.

Like Lovett and Hiatt, many artists have donated their time in support of Starry Nights and the Sisters Schools Foundation over the years. They include Vince Gill, Amy Grant, Keb Mo', Kenny Loggins, Michael McDonald, Kathy Mattea, Rodney Crowell, Karla Bonoff, Kim Carnes, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Lee Ann Womack, Gary Morris, Hal Ketchum, Chely Wright, Christopher Cross, Kenny Rankin and Nicolette Larson.

Tickets will be on sale in December; the date will be announced shortly. For updates and information, visit For inquiries about joining Starry Nights as a sponsor, email

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