Range In Age

As was mentioned in the first chapter, above, “Performers range from young teenagers to senior citizens, come from all walks of life, mostly from Butte County, and perform at a very high level of achievement.  Any person possessing recent, or former, musical skills is eligible.”

Several in band and chorus have reached  their 70's and 80's, and teens from middle school and High school have joined our ranks.  Sax player, Anthony Ferretti, may have been our youngest at 10.

Guest Soloist, Octogenarian Ralph “Doc” Dolgovin

For the 2008 Winter Festival, Dr. Ralph Dolgovin, 86, our oldest guest performer, played solo harmonica tunes for the crowd.  Dr. Dolgovin, an Oroville optometrist here 30 years before retiring, was a school board member and in Lion’s Club.

December 2007, Ralph rose to speak at a memorial service for chorus member, Nonna Lee Zancanella, but was too overcome to talk.  He offered instead a fitting harmonica tune.  After the service Jim Christensen asked Ralph to play at an OCCB concert.  “Doc” was honored, humbled, and felt blessed to participate.

Trever and Zackery

High school OCCB members Trevor Clark (tuba), and Zachary Tweedt
(trombone) in honor band. (Oroville Mercury-Register, 13 Feb '12) The young
men “… participated in the 50th annual Nor Cal Honor band on Feb. 24 at
Chico State University. Both young men attend Las Plumas High School
as juniors and are members of the Las Plumas/Oroville High School
Alliance Band... This was an honor for both to serve under the direction of
Dr. Royce Tevis of Chico State. They are the only students from Las
Plumas/Oroville Alliance Band to take part.”

Youth in Our Ensembles

The chorus are band members are mostly adult volunteers, but from the very beginning Jim Christensen encouraged the recruitment of young music talent from both middle schools, high schools, and a few from elementary.  Jim knew from his background in school music that there are gifted youth in our community, who would welcome the opportunity, and the challenge, to perform with talented adults. Tapping into the local teenage talent pool also helped to fill positional needs when adult volunteers are scarce in our music groups, particularly in the band.

Music is not only just enjoyment for performers.  For young society members in particular, music is a mentally rigorous and disciplined endeavor that routinely reinforces the skills of group cooperation and self-sacrifice to produce the desired communal sound, two important skills needed for families, work, and communities in general.  Athletes are taught these things, seasonally, but music organizations are generally a year round discipline.

It is difficult to recognize all of the youngsters that performed with the band or chorus.  At the least, 154 young folks have been involved with Band/Chorus through 4July 2013.  This writing began summer 2007, fifteen years into the band’s history, but 59 band teenagers, of which a few sang with the chorus, have been identified.  In addition, 95 guest young people have also participated: there have been 72 musicians, 11 singers, 1 dancer, and 11 poem readers).  The youth who became Band members are not in this count.  Twenty-six of the band teens played 3-10 years with OCCB.

How the Youth Came To Us

Some teens and adults, join us because a parent or relative is already part of the band or chorus and recommend them, such as in the Chollet, Enget, Ferretti, Fox, Goodwin, Henneker, Lienhard, Love, Rogers, Taylor, Wolcott, and Zancanella families.  Occasionally, though, a parent joins because the teen is a member, like the Shearer, Lindberg, and Bronson families.

Many of the young musicians, however, come recommended from their bandleaders who are in the band, from Biggs High, Central Middle School, Nelson Ave Middle School, OCS, Oroville/LP High, Palermo Middle School, and Paradise High.  Pakou Pha, Stephanie Elliott, Matt Delaby, Adam Rivers, siblings David and Kristy Lopez, and brothers Austin, Trevor, and Ross Clark came this way.

Some Youth Origins Are More Complicated

Annarose Lindberg came because of her band teacher.  Her mother, Sharen Lindberg, brought her and younger brother, Arthur Lindberg, along to the practices.  Soon, mother and son also join the band.  Josh Jamison came from a Christian school not OCS.

Steven Chollet’s older family members were Band/Chorus/Birdcage members, and seven-year old Steve began as the “kid” star in the 1988 Bird Cage musical, “Music Man”, and an extra for other musicals.  A few years later he was on stage again as a 13 year-old guest singer with eleven other kids for a 4July 1993 Concert, and then played guitar for band in his late teens.  Daniel Wenzel, a 2000 OCS Concert saxophonist, read a poem with 11 fellow Central Middle School eighth graders 4JULY 2001, then played for us in high school, and again after the Army.

Long Service

It is truly rewarding is to see some of the teens perform with us through middle school, or high school and beyond.  When OCS Band Director, Bill Henneker (OCCB member), passed away, Jim Christensen invited the young OCS musicians to sit in with the OCCBand until a new music leader was chosen.

Three of those OCS players who came and stayed, were sons of OCCB members: Aaron Enget, Vince and Anthony Ferretti.  Vince and Aaron were upper elementary, and Anthony was a 5th grader.  All three played with us through their high school senior year.  Two OCS sisters also stayed and played seven years each; Shawna Conley (2005-11), and Maggie Conley (2006-12).  Maggie played flute, and sang with OCC.

Aaron Enget played with us after high school, in uniform while on leave from the Air Force for 4JULY 2009, Adult Grad 2011, and 4July 2011 concerts, before  his assignment to Afghanistan.  After Afghanistan and serving at Beale AFB, Aaron joined us again to play for Memorial Day 2014.  Anthony Ferretti played ten years with us (2002-11), but the fall of 2011 he moved on to attend UC Davis.

Lisa Shearer, of Central Middle and Oroville High, played 8th–12th grades with the band, and beyond, then joined us once on leave from the Air Force.  Out of the Air Force, Lisa commuted on a motorcycle from San Francisco, where she attended college, to participate in the 4July 2010 Concert; that is eight different years.

Bob Goodwin’s daughter, Rachel Goodwin, of Oroville schools, played 7th – 12th grades, and performed with us after high school in two different years while in a college music program.  Upon graduation, she performed a major French horn solo at our Winter Festival 2008.  Rachel returned for the 4July 2010 Concert.  Bob’s youngest daughter, Rosalind Goodwin, has played with us since early 2010 beginning in the sixth grade, through 12th grade.

Anna Rose Lindbergh, joined the band as a high school freshman, and played with us five years before going to college. Her brother, Arthur Lindbergh, also came as a freshman, played five years until he joined the Navy, and rejoined OCCB in 2015 after his service.

The OCS Fund Raisers

OCCB has performed in school fund-raisers for the Oroville Christian School Music Program since 1999.  Two of the Shieh children played the violin during the first OCS Concert.  Starting with the 2002 concert, the OCS band students were asked to sit in with OCCBand for a number chosen by their director ahead of time.  Many of the students played with us this way, and a number of them joined the OCCBand sometime during or after their time at OCS.

The Christian School musicians who joined the Community Band while still in OCS were: Aaron Enget, Vincent Ferretti, Anthony Ferretti, and Shawna Smith.  Joining later were:  Daniel Wenzel, Christina Ferretti, Caleb Bronson, Cody Henneker, and Charlie, Lottie, and Maggie Conley.

Other Youth Performers

There are some other young people who performed once with us over the years.  A Children’s Choir of 12 elementary kids performed at the 4JULY 1993 Concert.  A group of 12 eighth grade Central grads read a poem for the 4July 2001 Concerts.  Steven Chollet and Daniel Wenzel were in these groups.

Two young fellows who played guitar in the 4JULY 1995 Concert were James Rogers, and Nathan WilliamsNatasha Ong soloed on the violin at Christmas 1994.  At the Winter Festival 1999, high schooler, Kelsey Wilson, did an Irish dance.  The Thao sisters, Mai Kao, and Shady, performed a duet at the 4JULY 2005 Concert.  Winter Festival 2011, young violinists, Hunter Wong, 4th grade, and Forest Wong, 3rd grade, performed individual solos.

>We Seek Them

This is an extensive but not a complete list of the youth who have served with us faithfully over the years.  It is, however, enough to show the philosophy and commitment of the band and chorus to continually draft or encourage young music students as part of our ongoing plan to promote a quality music influence in our community.

NEXT: Feather Fiesta Days, OCS Concerts