West Ranch to host concert festival

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News release 

String orchestras and concert bands from around the Santa Clarita Valley and Southern California will participate in the Southern California School Band & Orchestra Association concert festival hosted by West Ranch High School on March 26 and 27. 

Bands and orchestras from all seven local public high schools (Canyon, Hart, Saugus, Golden Valley, Castaic, Valencia and West Ranch) as well as middle school bands from Sierra Vista, Placerita, La Mesa, Arroyo Seco, Castaic and Rancho Pico, will take part in the festival. Other schools scheduled to take part include Beverly Hills High School, Hollywood High School, Redondo Union High School and Thousand Oaks High School. 

The two-day festival also offers an opportunity for student musicians to demonstrate their skills and talent for a panel of adjudicators, both in a performance setting, as well as in sight-reading. There will be three adjudicators in the performance venue, and one in the sight-reading room. 

Students receive four minutes to study a new piece of music placed before them before they must perform it. At the conclusion of the sight-reading performance, adjudicators will spend a few minutes with the students to give feedback on how well they executed the piece. 

Rod Schueller, director of instrumental music at West Ranch High School, said getting the chance to be evaluated by professional adjudicators provides student musicians with the opportunity to hear from an outside source what they need to improve their performance. 

“Although we as directors/conductors have likely voiced those same criticisms that students receive from the adjudicators, it is good for them to hear those comments from someone with an outside perspective,” Schueller said in a news release. “I would say that there are times when you hear a critique as a director and think, ‘How in the world did I miss that?’ Sometimes adjudicators will offer a solution to an issue you’re having in an ensemble, and you can use it moving forward.” 

While hosting the two-day festival is a large undertaking, Schueller said it is prestigious for West Ranch to be asked to host an SCSBOA event, where schools from around the area come to their campus. 

The event is free and open to the public. West Ranch High School is located at 26255 Valencia Blvd., Stevenson Ranch. For more information, call 661-222-1220, ext. 646. 

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