Classical music’s No. 1 maverick performs Oct. 9

Don’t expect a “stuffy concert” when Jade Simmons brings her Jade Simmons Experience Part 2 back to The Bender Stage Oct. 9.

“I’ve never played a stuffy concert,” said the classically trained pianist who defines herself as a maverick. “It’s interactive. You may end up on stage. You’ll hear music you already love, and you’ll discover music that you’ll fall in love with.”

Simmons has played the piano since she was 8 years old, “ … very late, I was already over the hill,” she confessed.

On her way to become a concert performer, Simmons was Miss Chicago, Miss Illinois and first runner-up at the Miss America 2000 pageant. From an early age, though, she had a love for practicing and performing at the piano.

She moved to the Lake Houston area in 2001 with her air traffic controller husband/ high school sweetheart and was accepted into Rice University’s master’s piano program.

Today, Simmons travels the world entertaining and inspiring audiences.

She was named one of the best keynote speakers by Northstar meetings and served as the storyteller behind American Public Media’s new hit podcast, “Decomposed,” where she blends her love of classical music history with the stories that created and shaped that music, accompanied by the music the stories inspired.

Take a listen to the podcast at

As for what The Bender audience can expect, Simmons confessed that it won’t be a “straight-ahead” recital.

“I’m bringing my usual mix of music and inspiration but this time, I’m also bringing a new experience I call The Sound of Breakthrough,” she said. “My goal is to leave my Lake Houston fans transformed in some way, seeing things differently about themselves and the world around them.”

Simmons rates Bender Director Jennifer Wooden, the Bender staff and the Bender audience an “A-plus.”

“Lake Houston is so warm and welcoming,” she said. “I want everyone to bring their kids just like last time. I so enjoy playing for them, too.”

Check out the versatility of Jade Simmons at her extraordinary website, or

“In addition to the Jade Simmons Experience, we’ve scheduled some marvelous events that will bring you to The Bender for the rest of the year,” said Wooden.

Christian Youth Theater, CYT, brings two, unique, creative, kids-oriented shows to The Bender with performances that the entire family will enjoy. “Honk! JR,” Oct. 22-24 and Disney’s “Newsies” Oct. 29 — Nov. 7.

“Honk! JR” is the cheery story of the famous fable, “The Ugly Duckling.” Disney’s “Newsies” is the true tale based on the 1992 motion picture of a charismatic newsboy who led a band of newspaper boys on strike in 1899.

The Texas Repertory Theatre brings the Pulitzer Prize-winning “Driving Miss Daisy” to The Bender Nov. 12-21.

And the 2021 season ends on Dec. 11 with The Bender’s annual holiday concert, this year featuring gospel singer, songwriter and worship leader Vicki Yohe — backed by a live orchestra.

To purchase tickets for any of these events and to experience Jade Simmons at Bender Saturday, Oct. 9, call 281-446-4140, visit or search Facebook @ Charles Bender Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $20.

Tom Broad
Author: Tom BroadEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Besides being a proud graduate of The University of Nebraska-Lincoln and, therefore, a Cornhusker, I am retired from Memorial Hermann. I am a correspondent and columnist for Lake Houston's hometown paper, The Tribune, as well as a director of the Lake Houston Redevelopment Corporation, a member of the board of the Humble Area Assistance Ministries, and Volunteer Extraordinaire for the Lake Houston Area Chamber.

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