New Band Advisor
Band has a new adviser and he's ready to lead.
October 2, 2016
After 24 years of teaching in the music department at Oxnard High School, Mr. Legohn decided to retire from the band and focus on building the video program at OHS. When Mr. Andre Spence learned about the OHS band director vacancy, he decided to fulfill the role.
For the last five years, Mr. Spence has been in Florida teaching band, choir, and orchestra at several different high schools. He came back to his hometown of Oxnard “to bring the show style of band to the West coast,” said Mr. Spence.
A few of his past music accomplishments include taking his band to the 2013 St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Dublin, Ireland and to the 2015 SCSBOA (Southern California School Band and Orchestra Association) Championships.
The OHS band students have found him to be very approachable in their past few months’ work with him. Sophomore Daniel Castillo said, “He connects with the students rather than just giving us instructions.” His connection with the students makes it easier for them to practice and make progress with their music.
Mr. Spence has made some changes to their system that reflect his uniqueness. “He introduced different perspectives into band,” said sophomore Nadia Rubio. Spence’s fresh routines in music, dances, and chants have brought fun and energy into the band. “I feel like he is, in more urban terms,” said junior Kelleryn Pallasugui, “making us more lit.”
Even though the band’s practice hours have been extended, Spence still understands that students need to manage their school lives. Rubio said, “He accepts that [students] have other responsibilities.” He gives students some time after school, making it easier for them to work around their practice schedules.
Mr. Spence’s students have high hopes for him to help them improve. “I expect him to bring us up and make us the best band we could be,” said freshman Marisol Velazquez. He wants to make his students better not only as a band, but as individuals. Describing the pace of progress he wishes to see in the future of the program, Spence said it is to be, “0 to 100 — real quick.”
Castillo said, “He’s a good band director and a good person in general. I’m excited to see what happens in the future.”