Class of 2013 will march, sing in college by Gregory R. Norfleet · News · May 24, 2013
Several members of the Class of 2013 plan to take their fine arts abilities and talents to the next level by joining orchestras, bands and even a choir.
Tom Schreiber, Rachel Oswald, Tyler Oswald, Taylor Marshall-Lodge, Katie Schieffer, Kristen Budreau and Collin Cochran all engaged West Branch High School with their musical abilities and want to do so again when they attend college in the fall.
Rachel Oswald plans to attend University of Northern Iowa and join the marching band with her flute, though she has not declared a major yet; Tyler Oswald plans to attend the University of Iowa and major in pharmacy, while also joining the marching band to play in the drum line. Marshall-Lodge will attend Iowa State University to major in animal ecology and zoology, while playing her saxophone in the concert band. Schieffer plans to attend UNI and major in anthropology and is considering the orchestra to play her flute. Budreau wants to play the clarinet in the marching band while majoring in mathematics at Iowa. Cochran wants to major in biology at UNI and play his trumpet in both marching band and symphonic band.
Schreiber plans to sing at North Iowa Area Community College while also playing baseball before transferring to Full Sail University in Winter Park, Fla., where he will major in recording arts.
All of the musicians said they started playing in sixth grade, where they got their first inspiration to play music from instructor Paul Tallman.
“We loved Mr. Tallman,” Budreau said.
“He was so energetic,” Marshall-Lodge said. “He made it fun. He didn’t just sit up there and conduct.”
Schreiber said he started singing as far back as third grade, performing in school concerts and the like.
And when he got to high school, he found he enjoyed the same kind of music as choir instructor Chris Reed: renaissance music.
“Mr. Reed is always enthusiastic and infectious,” he said.
Another thing the musicians have in common: All but one are the oldest siblings in their families. Schieffer, who has a twin, Elizabeth, is the exception.
Rachel said she and twin Tyler were encouraged by their grandparents. They could not play, she said, “So Tyler and Rachel will have to pick it up,” she remembers them saying.
“We developed a passion for it,” she said.
Budreau said sixth grade was the time to start.
“You learn the basics in sixth grade,” she said. “If not, you got behind.”
Other music instructors helped encourage them all through school, Rachel said, like Leah Letje, Katie Schouten and now Staci Speer. Budreau said Schouten even plans to return at the end of the school year for graduation parties.
Cochran said his grandfather played in a drum corp, so he is following in his grandfather’s musical footsteps.
“He was my role model for the trumpet,” he said.
Budreau’s grandmother and aunt both played music, and she still uses her aunt’s clarinet.
Budreau said there were times she wanted to quit, but remembers her mother, Amy, convincing her to stay involved.
“Now I’m glad I went out for high school band,” she said. “It is a lot more fun.”
Tyler said he likes what a marching band can do.
“We get to go to all the football games and pump up the crowd,” he said.
Cochran likes the challenge of a marching band.
“It requires talent,” he said. “Not everybody can march and play.”
“Or read a drill chart,” Budreau adds.
“And have 16,000 pairs of eyes on you,” Cochran interjects. “It’s a chance to be the center of attention.”
Scheiffer said that, as a freshman, it was easier making friends in band.
“It’s still a big group but smaller than the whole freshman class,” she said.
Cochran said he made friends with juniors and seniors his first year.
“I was hanging out with seniors while a freshman,” he said. “And I got more comfortable in school.”
Some of the seniors said they will have to audition to get in, but many are confident.
“Some of the music can sound easy but is actually kind of hard,” Cochran said.
Still, with their background, it is not too difficult, Budreau said.
“It’s not much more difficult than we play now,” she said. “Just play what is in front of you.”
Schreiber said he has been part of large group music ensembles since his freshman year and that group has earned Division I ratings.
He will also have to audition, selecting songs that complement his baritone voice.
Cochran said playing in marching band is physically demanding.
“You have to be in shape, especially when you work out on 90-degree days in August,” he noted.
Budreau said many think one cannot perform in band and play sports, but she points out that band is a daytime class, while sports are after school. She served as a basketball and volleyball manager and played golf while also performing for jazz band, show choir and band.
“You can easily do it,” she said. “I’m not overly stressed out and I have time with friends.”
The school will work with your schedule, she said.
Schreiber said he hopes to get a job as an audio engineer or music producer.
“Full Sail University has a high job placement rate in the music industry,” he said.
Schreiber was grateful to Reed “always pushing me.”
“He helped my enthusiasm for music grow,” he said.