It is with great pleasure that we introduce Mr. Rob Specketer who will assume the duties of Director of Bands for the 2016-17 school and beyond. Below is a message from Mr. Specketer.
“Hello Bruin Band! I’m very excited to come to Forest Park, and I can’t wait to meet everyone and get to work. My name is Rob Specketer, and I’m currently in my 4th year teaching band. I have taught grades 5-12 over the last two years in Fairfax County Public Schools at Hayfield Secondary and Hayfield Elementary, and I worked at Middlesex High School for the two years before that, where I taught band, choir, guitar, and music theory. At Hayfield, I worked with the marching band, both in competition and for the Friday night football games. I love writing out short stand tunes and having the band play them, so I hope you guys have some ideas. I also worked with the Pit Orchestra last fall, so I’m looking forward to doing more of that at Forest Park!
Again, I’m excited to get to know everyone and to become a part of the Bruin family. We are going to continue the great traditions you all have already started.”
On April 9th, the Virginia Band and Orchestra Directors Association named the Bruin Band a Virginia Honor Band. This award recognizes bands who achieve Superior ratings at both the Marching and Concert Band Assessments. This is the 11th time Forest Park has been so honored. Congratulations and thank you to all whose efforts made this possible.
Ben Fritz, Director of Bands at George Washington University passed away last Thursday evening at the age of 54. Dr. Fritz was an adjudicator for District 9 assessment in 2006 and 2014. I met Ben at the University of Calgary in 1988. He was living in Michigan and I in New Jersey. We became fast friends then, always stayed in touch, and rekindled that friendship when I came to Forest Park in 2005 to discover that he was now teaching at GW. He was a great teacher, and you have all either heard me tell stories that are about him or heard me say things he always says. He liked to say “I judge band directors on whether or not I want to be in their band”. He was my great friend and I will miss him. Watch this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zcMe6WWcN18
On Saturday, April 11th the Virginia Band and Orchestra Directors Association recognized the Forest Park High School Bruin Band as a Virginia Honor Band for the 2014-15 school year. This award was achieved by earning Superior ratings at both the Marching Band Assessment in the Fall and the Concert Band Assessment in March. In addition, the Bruin Band received special recognition for earning the Honor Band award for the 10th time.
Despite some interesting logistics, the Wind Ensemble participated as a selected band at the National Band Association symposium held at George Mason University this weekend.
Pictured is the group rehearsing with Col. Dennis Layendecker (retired) Commander and Conductor of the US Air Force Band. The band also rehearsed with Captain Brian Walden, Commander and Conductor of the US Navy Band.