On Friday April 7, the Citrus Valley High School Wind Ensemble took a trip to Cal State Long Beach for a clinic at the Bob Cole Conservatory with Mr. John Carnahan. A band clinic is essentially a meeting with a music director not affiliated with another program to provide new insight or critique on their playing. In this case, Mr. Carnahan helped the Wind Ensemble with some of the pieces they were preparing with for their annual spring concert coming up in May.
The band arrived at the Bob Cole Conservatory of music around 9:30 and took some time to look around the campus before gathering together about an hour later in the band room. Mr. Carnahan started with allowing Mr. Austin Meiners, Citrus Valley’s band director, to lead the band as usual and interrupted when he found something that could be improved upon. He made sure to engage with the group and made it a point to give a piece of advice to every player by the end of the rehearsal. First chair flute player, Dante Dullas, was one of the many students who benefitted from this method. When asked what he learned he commented on how Mr. Carnahan showed him that “simple things like adjusting the angle at which you concentrate your air stream can make a tremendous difference in the way you sound.” Mr. Meiners stated he believed trips like this benefit students because “it’s very valuable for them to see the university lifestyle, and see the next step whether they want to go into a music program or not.” Grant Goodman, a senior who will be attending the University of the Pacific’s music conservatory in the fall, admitted he is “most looking forward to the environment of serious musicians, both students and professors”.
The band’s trip was not all work though. After the clinic they had lunch and then proceeded to split in two groups and take a tour of the campus. They left Cal State Long Beach around 2:00 and took a trip to the Museum of Latin American Art which was founded by Dr. Robert Gumbiner in 1996. The group looked like they had a fun time walking around the museum and admiring the mixed media art forms. Mr. Meiners then surprised the students with a quick trip to a nearby beach where they took pictures with each other and tried not get too much sand in their shoes. For their final stop the band regrouped and had dinner at El Torito, a kind of a staple for the Citrus Valley Band program. All in all, it was a very successful trip.