Band and Orchestra Wraps Up Big Year

The WRHS band and Orchestra wrapped up a successful 2022-2023 school year. The students, led by Mr. Brown, made a significant impact and established WRHS as an elite program in MUSD and San Joaquin County.

Our school’s program is much more distinctive than other schools in our district. For starters, we have the only orchestra in MUSD, and our band and orchestra split into different small groups, such as Jazz Combo, Mariachi, String Chamber Ensemble, Sax Quartet, two drumlines, and a rock band. This musical diversity gives students much more leeway and room to explore their interests musically than in other schools in our district. This also provides students with a lot more variety in the music played at our school, whether it’s something such as Mariachi during an extended lunch period for Mexican Independence Day or Jazz Combo performing during the back-to-school night in August.

Mr. Brown’s first year at Weston Ranch has been overall good for him. Membership grew by 30 students as he introduced new things to the school, like partnering up with BSU and having their first black history month concert in February. They played music by all-black composers and had a guest artist come and play for the event. This was one of his favorite events of this year. In addition, Weston Ranch is the only string orchestra in the whole school district and the only school that does symphony orchestra in the county.

“This year has been very successful,” Brown said. “I plan on staying here for a long time because I felt very welcome as a music teacher.”

Brown feels exceptionally proud of their first big concert this year. They have performed over 20 live concerts this year, including Little Shop of Horrors and a performance with his jazz band at Multi-Cultural Night. However, this year, Mr. Brown’s favorite memory was during the last home football game. He said it was “particularly exciting” not only because the game got intense toward the end but because fifty 8th-grade band students visited to play with them, which made one hundred students play in the stands that night. Weston Ranch will have its first summer band camp to capitalize on that fantastic evening with the middle schoolers.

Mr. Brown has many goals and plans for band and orchestra, such as doing the previously stated new summer band camp program, which is a first for Weston Ranch. This summer camp will teach students how to do parade marching and how to do the dancing for football games, and more. Mr. Brown is also planning some traveling for his students, including a trip to the U.S. Marine Corps base in San Diego. This trip would show them around the music facilities and recording studio and allow them to spend time on the beach. Mr. Brown is very hopeful of bringing the band to a music teacher conference in Chicago. This is only invitational; they would fly out the students there and perform in front of a music teacher crowd.

He has also perfectly reciprocated the energy of our spirit-filled band students by implementing a new band tradition, with drumlines playing in the halls on the day of home games. As a result, he and the band’s presence is very well-known amongst students and staff, whether with the band’s bold performances at the football games or spirited tunes being played at pep rallies.