Julian Garrido receives middle school’s first Sousa Award
Eighth-grade musician Julian Garrido has been chosen as the first recipient of the Sousa Award for outstanding, all-around leadership and musicianship at Olive Peirce Middle School.
“Julian exemplifies the well-rounded musician and scholar that this award recognizes,” said OPMS band director Karl Lampe. “It has been exciting to watch Julian’s growth over the past five years and I am so happy that his accomplishments have been recognized,”
An active member in the Ramona Unified School District band program for five years, Garrido will enter high school in late August and will participate in the Ramona High School Royal Regiment.
He began playing clarinet in grade school and distinguished himself early as a leader and a musician, Lampe noted. Always prepared and always working beyond expectations, Garrido showed potential from his first day in band, said Lampe, adding that Garrido is an outstanding student academically and has received many certificates acknowledging his accomplishments.
In addition to mastering the soprano clarinet, Garrido contributed to the band by learning to play the bass clarinet and alto saxophone, said the band director. This past school year was especially busy for Garrido, said Lampe, as he led the OPMS Advanced Band in preparation for Southern California School Band and Orchestra festivals by helping to organize the students for rehearsals outside of class, and by taking charge during class time to conduct the band and prepare the music for festival performance.
“Julian was able to stand in front of his peers and successfully conduct the band, but more importantly he was able to identify areas that were done exceptionally well, correct items that needed fixing and teach the band how to produce a better sound through his ability to have the concept of what the music should sound like,” Lampe said.
Through his efforts and help, the Advanced Band earned excellent ratings at festivals in Oceanside, Temecula and at Ramona High School, said Lampe.
Garrido was vice president of the Band Council, steering the band to community events, including two projects that helped beautify the OPMS campus, Lampe added. The council also helped raise enough funds to take the band students on trips to Chapman University, San Diego State University, San Elijo Hills Middle School, Lexington Junior High, Disneyland®, and Knott’s Berry Farm.
In addition, Garrido participated in the OPMS Jazz Band, where he provided the band with exciting and interesting improvised solos, noted Lampe.
“Julian was often called upon to play difficult passages and solos on the spot,” said Lampe. “He always was able to perform in a professional manner, showed maturity and musicality far beyond his age.”
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