We continue our OC18 staff announcements by introducing our brass team for the upcoming season. With the promotion of Lisa Tatum to Caption Head and the addition of new talent throughout the team, we expect our brass to continue to strengthen.
Lisa Tatum returns for her second year with OC, now as the Brass Caption Head. She is currently the Assistant Director of Bands at La Porte High School in La Porte, TX. She earned a B.S. in Music Education at the University of Alabama in 2010 and a M.M. in Trombone Performance at the University of Utah in 2012. Lisa was a member of the Troopers brass staff 2009, 2013, and 2014; and the Bluecoats brass staff in 2010.
Joining the team as an Ensemble Specialist is Chris Ruglia. Chris earned a B.A. in Music Education from Eastern Michigan University. While at EMU he performed in the Symphonic Band, Wind Symphony, Marching Band, Symphony Orchestra, Collegium Musicum, and the Huron River Brass Quintet. He currently serves as Director of Bands at Klein Collins High School in Klein, TX, a position he has held since 2016. Under his direction, the Klein Collins Wind Ensemble has been selected as a Featured Band at the 2018 Music for All National Concert Band Festival in Indianapolis, IN.
Thomas Turpin will also be joining the team as an Ensemble Specialist. Thomas Turpin is currently the Associate Director of Bands at Westwood High School in Austin, TX, where he serves as the Director of the Westwood Warrior Marching Band. Thomas also conducts the Wind Symphony, and co-conducts the Philharmonic Orchestra. Both ensembles have consistently earned UIL “Sweepstakes” ratings in his tenure at Westwood. In addition to his teaching responsibilities at Westwood, Thomas currently serves as program coordinator and drill designer for numerous high school and university marching bands throughout Texas, Alabama, and Utah.
Gabriel Velasco is our High Brass Coordinator for the 2018 season. Gabriel has lived in Los Angeles, CA since he graduated from the University of Utah in 2013. He is an active musician in the area, performing with the Westlake Village Symphony, Moorpark College Wind Ensemble, Center Stage Opera, and is currently the Principal Trumpet for the Los Angeles Symphonic Winds. Gabriel joined the Moorpark music family in the fall of the 2013 as a brass coach at both Mesa Verde Middle School and Moorpark High School. In 2014, he was promoted to the Assistant Director Position at MHS. He was again promoted in 2016 to the Director of Instrumental Music.
Sarah Wagner returns to the Oregon Crusaders as a High Brass Technician for 2018. Sarah holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Colorado Mesa University where she studied trumpet under Calvin Hofer and Jonathan Hinkle, as well as percussion under Darin Kamstra. Sarah performed with the 2013 and 2014 DCI Casper Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps on trumpet. She also was a featured mellophone performer with the Northglenn Performance Theatre in the first ever 2015 WGI Winds Fan Favorite ensemble. She has taught marching and concert percussion as well as brass with the Glenwood Springs High School Percussion Ensemble, NoCo Amplitude Percussion Ensemble, and Altitude Winds. Sarah is currently the assistant director of bands at Altona Middle School, percussion instructor at Trail Ridge Middle School, and music teacher at Skyline High School in Longmont, Colorado.
Patrick Hunninghake joins the OC Brass Team as a High Brass Technician. He is currently working as a band director at Bellevue West High School and Lewis and Clark Middle School in Bellevue, Nebraska. In this position he is head of the jazz department, and assists with the Bellevue West Marching Thunderbirds and concert bands. Prior to accepting a position in Bellevue he was an active freelance trumpet player in the Chicago area as well as a member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. Patrick obtained his MM in trumpet performance from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University in 2013.
Also joining us as a High Brass Technician is Gary English. Gary English is a first year doctoral conducting candidate at Northwestern University, where he is a student of Dr. Mallory Thompson. He received his Masters in Wind Conducting from Louisiana State University where he studied with Dr. Damon Talley. Prior to pursuing graduate studies, Gary English taught high school band for eight years in the public schools of Virginia, most recently serving as the director of bands at South County High School in Fairfax County, VA. All ensembles under his direction have received superior and excellent ratings at assessments.
Albert Ortiz is the last High Brass Technician joining us for the 2018 season. Ortiz is currently the Director of Bands at the new Bentonville West High School in Bentonville, Arkansas. In its inaugural year, the marching band received 4th place at the Arkansas State Marching Contest in Class AAAA and all concert bands earned superior ratings. Prior to Bentonville West HS, Albert was assistant director with the BOA Grand National Semi-Finalist band, Bentonville High School, and Texas 6A State Qualifying Band, Edinburg North High School. He was also Brass Caption Head for the Guardians Drum and Bugle corps in 2014 and taught visual with the Legends Drum and Bugle corps in 2015.
Turner Hawkins returns this year in his expanded role of Low Brass Coordinator. A native of Lexington, Kentucky, Turner completed undergraduate studies in Music Education and Bassoon Performance at Transylvania University. As a DCI performer, he spent two years with the Madison Scouts before marching two summers with the Concord Blue Devils, aging out in 2016. Currently, he serves as Assistant Director of Bands and Dobyns-Bennett High School in Kingsport, Tennessee, and is excited to enter the world of WGI Winds this winter on the staff of Redline Winds from Greenville, SC.
Cameron Coday returns for her second year working as a Low Brass Technician. Cameron Coday graduated High Honors from the University of Colorado at Boulder with a Bachelor of Music Education and a Minor in Leadership. Cameron marched with Casper Troopers (2013-2014), Phantom Regiment (2015) and The Cadets (2016). She has also performed with Denver’s Rise Percussion and worked with Altitude Winds of Colorado Springs. Cameron currently resides in Houston, Texas where she serves as the Assistant Director of Bands at Lamar High School.
Marco Mellone is new to the Low Brass staff this year as a Technician. A Native of the Northern California Bay Area, Marco Mellone is the current Director of Bands at Edison-Computech Middle School in Fresno, California. Prior to this position, Marco began his professional career as the Director of Instrumental Music at Foothill High School, located in Bakersfield, Ca. During his tenure at Computech, the program has seen a drastic increase in participation and performance, including superior ratings for the wind ensemble and a percussion championship. Beyond his very active teaching duties, Marco continues to perform as a Bass Trombonist in the California Central Valley. He holds positions with the Bakersfield Wind Symphony, Central Valley Wind Symphony, and the Yosemite Brass Consortium.
Shea Pierce joins the Low Brass staff as well for the 2018 season as a Technician. Pierce is a freelance trombonist and private lesson instructor in the Northwest Arkansas Area. For the past 5 years, Shea has been a sought after Marching Band Instructor and Low Brass Clinician in West Kentucky, The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, and Northwest Arkansas. Shea’s drum corps career began in 2012 with Carolina Crown, winners of the Jim Ott Best Brass Award, and the S ilver Medal. In the years following, Shea worked as a Visual Technician at Legends Drum and Bugle Corps.
James Nufer returns for his ninth season with the Oregon Crusaders as a Brass Consultant. James Nufer is a trumpet player and music educator who performs and maintains a high brass studio in the South Bend, IN, area. He holds a master’s degree from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a bachelor’s degree from Lawrence University where he studied with Kevin Hartman and John Daniel, respectively.
Selena Maytum joins OC as a Brass Consultant as well. She currently serves as a horn player in the U.S. Army Field Band. Before joining the Army, Selena was a band director at Loveland High School in Loveland, CO and Spartanburg High School in Spartanburg, SC. Selena was a member of the 2008 Japan Touring Cast of Music Motion Theater’s Odyssey, the Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra, the Southern Indiana Wind Ensemble, and the Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps.
Bill McClendon will also be joining us as a Brass Consultant. Mr. McClendon is currently the Band Director at Terry Parker Senior High School in Jacksonville, Florida. He has taught previously in Baker and Palm Beach Counties. He has also taught at Lake City Community College as an adjunct instructor. He holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in English, Education, and Music from the University of Florida and Southern Oregon University. His drum corps teaching experience includes Teal Sound, Seattle Cascades, Revolution, Pioneer, and the Racine Scouts.
You can read more about the OC18 brass team on the Staff page.