Schizophrenia overcomes the North Valley’s Boulder Creek High School band

Band Notesnv-high-school-oct-nov-16

Schizophrenia overcomes the North Valley’s Boulder Creek High School band.

By Eric Olson


It’s that time of the year again. The sun has finally ceased (some) of its incessant torture; stepping outside in the evening, you can almost feel the sensation of a cool breeze. If you listen closely, off in the distance, carried by the wind, you’ll likely hear the thump, thump of the bass drum, the rat-a-tat-tat of the snares and the faint sound of brass instruments belting out a fight song. Marching band season is here and for those in the Anthem community, you are probably hearing the Jaguar Pride Marching Pride from Boulder Creek High School.

But this year, there is something different about the band’s movements and sounds. There is a kind of schizophrenia. Listening to the distance music, you may get visions of a dark knight, a man with scissors for hands, or maybe even a pumpkin king. Fear not. This is all part of the band’s brand new 2016 show titled Schizophrenic Serenade.

For the 2016 marching season, the BCHS band’s performance centers on the musical arrangement of film composer Danny Elfman. Elfman is known for creating the musical score for many of the Tim Burton movies, including Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and Batman, for which he won a Grammy. Elfman was also the lead singer for the band Oingo Boingo. The Jaguars’ performance consists of several movements including an opener, a ballad, and the closer. In each movement you’ll recognize Elfman’s melodies from these popular films.

The Jag’s marching season began with summer training in late July and includes eight football game performances and five band competitions. Pulling such a performance together is no small feat, with students typically logging 10 to 15 hours of weekly practice outside of the five hours of in-class commitment and additional personal practice hours. In addition to learning and memorizing the music, each band member must also learn their role in a large choreography, which consists of a myriad of marching steps, transitions, sets, instrument positions, and visuals.

“Marching band is a family, and one of the more demanding organizations in high school,” says Everett Olson, senior trumpet player for the Jaguar Pride Marching Band. “We have almost 150 members. Everyone is a part of the performance and each member plays a unique role. There are no substitutes, no back up players, and no timeouts.”

The band’s dedication and work ethnic has proven successful. Since its inception in 2004, the band has increased membership every year, moving from division II to division I in 2013, and subsequently placing in the top 10 during the 2015 State Band competition.

Adding to the band’s schizophrenia, the group received a special honor when asked to perform at this year’s Holiday Bowl in San Diego, California on Dec. 27. Typically, an invitation to perform at a bowl game requires a lengthy audition process. To the credit of the BCHS band and its director, James O’Halloran, it had the honor of being selected directly based on performance history and reputation. The appearance at the Holiday Bowl will mark the culmination of the marching season with the band performing its Schizophrenic Serenade.

Get Schizophrenic with the Band!

The band’s booster club, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, is instrumental in collecting donations and hosting fundraising events to help offset the large costs involved in competitions and sending the band to a major bowl game. Upcoming fundraising events will include a car wash, promotions with local restaurants, and tickets for an early movie showing.

If you’re interested in donating, seeing a performance, or learning more about the Jaguar Pride Marching Band, additional information can be found at

If you’re interested in seeing the Schizophrenic Serenade performance, the BCHS band performs every Friday at the BCHS football games and participates in band competitions most Saturdays in October.


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