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The Dublin Shield

Meet Dublin High School’s New Band Director, Ms. Melissa Williams

Ashley Kim, Editor-in-Chief

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When were you first interested in music? How did this interest develop?

I started playing music in middle school.  I had other hobbies at the time and mostly enjoyed playing Disney songs on my flute (I’m slightly embarrassed to admit). It wasn’t until high school when I had a really great saxophone teacher and band director that I became much more serious about practicing and studying music. All through high school I thought I was going to major in Biology because science was my favorite subject but I decided my senior year that really I wanted to major in music! I’m one of the lucky few that never questioned that decision or changed my major in college.

 

What instruments do you play? If you had to pick a favorite instrument, what would it be?

Saxophone is definitely my true love but I also play flute and clarinet at a “professional” level. To teach the instruments, I have to have all the notes memorized on every single one. So I can play almost all the band instruments….with a variety quality.

 

How did you discover this opportunity at Dublin High?

I feel soooo lucky that I stumbled onto the posting on edjoin.org. I thought it would be a band position that was in high demand and it would be a long shot when I applied. But to my pleasant surprise I was called for an interview and the rest is history!

 

What appeals to you about California? What do you miss about New York?

So far I’m really enjoying exploring the area. I’ve been to a few beaches, strolled in Tilden Park, walked around San Francisco and got some jogging miles in the Iron Horse Trail. I’m also having a blast at Dublin High. I love the energy and enthusiasm at school. It feels like such a special community be a part of. At the same time, I definitely miss New York!!! I really miss seeing my friends, going to all the great restaurants, and having access to so many world class musical venues such as the Metropolitan Opera, jazz clubs, Carnegie Hall, and Broadway Shows! Since most of my friends have careers in the arts, I used to get free tickets on a regular basis. 🙂

 

How was your first band camp? Did you enjoy band camp?

Band Camp was a blast! It’s such a busy week with a lot going on and I was ready for quite a few bumps in the road but the students really came together and made it a smooth and fun week. I think we managed to make significant progress in 5 days.

 

What would be, in your opinion, Dublin High band’s best quality? Why?

The Irish Guard’s best quality is the work ethic and team mentality. The student’s do a great job of taking care of one another in terms of expectations and making sure everyone knows what’s going on. But they also hold each other accountable in a friendly, positive, and respectful way. You can tell people really enjoy being part of this special musical family and I feel so fortunate to be a part of it too!

How are you looking to change the Dublin High band program?

I think it’s too early to tell but my goal this year is to get a better idea of all the things that are going well (which is so many things!) and figure out what things we can adjust and improve for future years.

 

What are you looking forward to when it comes to the Dublin High band?

I’m really looking forward to all the opportunities to perform and compete throughout the year. Music students spend so much time practicing and rehearsing every day in class and some schools don’t get to perform nearly as much as Dublin. I want to showcase their talent any chance I can get!

 

What do you enjoy outside of music?

Well when I’m not teaching, I’m actually still a freelancing saxophonist so I do a lot of that after school. But besides music, I love staying active running, horseback riding, or playing softball. When I’m out of energy I LOVE reading and discussing books with my friends.

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