It’s been four years since Ms. Josie Coburn became Orcutt Academy’s band director. Since, then, the band has grown to record numbers this year. But the band has done more than just grow in numbers this year: they started their first marching band program as well as participated in several other competitions. According to Coburn, the band has several more goals for this year and beyond.
Four years ago, Coburn says, there was only 15 students in band. Since then, it has grown to 27 students, which has allowed the band to take advantage of several opportunities as a result of their increased size.
Coburn reports that the band has finally been able to start a marching program, which would have been impractical in years past. This year is also the first year the band has had a drum major, with OA senior Trenton Kozel taking the title. Coburn says that in years past, the band could not afford to lose another player for a drum major, but with the increase students she says that they were finally able to have one.
So what has spurred this increase in numbers? According to Coburn, it has started with growing interest at the elementary and junior high level in order to get a large base of incoming freshman with band experience.
She says the main item that has encouraged the band’s growth is that the band tries to play interesting music. The way she sees it, “People love to hear music so when they hear something good happening they want to join in.”
Coburn also attributes the band’s recent success to the group of seniors that have participated the last four years. She believes their confidence and dedication have set the tone for the rest of the group.
The band has also been involved in much more competitions this year. Coburn explains that the band has competed in several parades and they are about to go compete in Disneyland’s Music in the Parks. A competition that has school bands come from all over the Western United States to compete. Last year the band received the grade of “excellent” at the competition, the second highest grade possible. This year, Coburn aims to achieve the top grade at the competition this year. The competition will start on April 5th. Good luck to all of those in band!