Performer Profile: Corin Uchuion

corin-uchuion-mprofileCorin Uchuion (pronounced oo-KY-en) performed with Pacific Crest in 2014 and 2015, and she is returning for the 2016 season as one of the drum majors.

Tell us about your background and family.
I was born and raised in Ventura, California, alongside my older sister, Sherry, whom I credit for getting me involved in percussion.

What brought you to Pacific Crest?
I first learned about drum corps through my high school band director and close friends in the music program. A lot of my friends were really interested in another California corps, but I wanted to branch out from them, and there was something special about Pacific Crest. When I met a few members of PC from previous years, I instantly felt the sense of family in the corps, and instantly knew it was where I belonged.

How did the Pacific Crest experience impact your life?
Pacific Crest has completely changed my life over the past two years. My first summer with the corps was easily the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Through the experience, I not only became a better musician, but also a better person. I learned a lot about myself, and how to cope with challenges introduced to me, including depression that I struggled with from a young age. As a section leader of a mostly first-year section in 2015, my goal was to help create a close-knit bond where we all grew from each other, with the collective goal of reaching our full potential as a section and as individuals. The best part of my experience is the people I’ve met through this activity and all the memories we’ve made together — both good and bad, as they’ve all become stories to tell, and part of who we are and how we’re connected.

How do you think Pacific Crest will affect your future goals and plans?
Pacific Crest opened my eyes to my true passion and ability toward music, and has opened many doors to pursue this passion. I currently teach other young musicians, as well as study music in school; both opportunities I would not have had, if not for the Pacific Crest staff and organization as a whole.

Is there anything else you want to say about yourself, your life, the people who have most influenced and inspired you?
I would not be who I am today, or who I aspire to be in the next 5, 10, 20 years without every person and interaction I have made in this activity. I am especially grateful for the 2014 staff, including Stuart Pompel, Gabe Cobas, Andy Bill, and Dalia Berman for always pushing me and, more importantly, always believing in me. I am also infinitely thankful for all the close friends I’ve made through Pacific Crest, as they’re the ones who motivated me through each truck load, each block, and each day.

Is there something you’d like others to know about Pacific Crest?
Pacific Crest is a family and they take care of you; not always in the way you want, but in the way you need. Pacific Crest and “I-vii-I-vi-V” will mean something different to anyone you ask, but most importantly, it will always mean something to everyone.

Meet the 2016 Drum Majors

Four students have been selected as drum majors for the 2016 season. The team will be led by Sabrina Thomas.

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Performer Profile: Victoria McFarland

Victoria-McFarland-#2-mprofileVictoria McFarland performed with Pacific Crest in 2014 and 2015, and she is returning for the 2016 season.

Tell us about your background and family.
My hometown is Moreno Valley, CA. I am an only child, but my friend, Jesse, lives with us. He’s older than me, and is pretty much my big brother.

What brought you to Pacific Crest?
I was attracted to the challenge and the adventure behind it. I enjoy the physical and mental challenges that I face at PC because they help me push my limits. I learned about drum corps during high school when I had some friends who marched.

How did the Pacific Crest experience impact your life?
Pacific Crest has helped me keep my cool in difficult situations, and helped show me that I’m stronger than I think. In any situation, I’m able to think, “I’ve been in a situation harder than this,” and then relax. The best part of the experience is traveling, trying new things, and the feeling of finishing  a performance and seeing people on their feet. 

How do you think Pacific Crest will affect your future goals and plans?
Pacific Crest has made me ready for any situation. I’ve learned how to handle life’s challenges on my own, without having to rely on others to help figure them out. Overall, I figure out solutions more quickly, and have gotten better with time management.

What else do you do outside of drum corps?
Music isn’t my only passion, though in addition to PC, I’m section leader for the Riverside City College Marching Tigers. My biggest passion, though, is special effects makeup, which I hope to do for a living..

Is there something you’d like others to know about Pacific Crest?
The most important thing to understand is that we are a family, and that we will always be there for each other. One thing that really brings us close together is our corps song. In the beginning, the song may not be as powerful to the rookies as it is to returners, but by the end — when we play it one last time — it hits everyone hard. The Pacific Crest experience is about being the best performer as well as the best person you can be.

Why I Volunteer: Mailyn Ramirez

Mailyn Ramirez is the mother of five-year member, Sabrina Thomas. She has been volunteering for Pacific Crest since 2012.

“I have always thought that donating time is just as valuable as donating money. I started volunteering for Pacific Crest in 2012. I quickly learned how much time and energy is needed to run such an intricate organization that helps support many gifted youths to showcase and expand their talent. Volunteers are the life support of PC.”

“Without volunteers, it would be difficult to feed almost 200 people during camps and tour, host a show at the Rose Bowl, and transport the performer’s equipment across the country to their competitions. Volunteering has been a great way to see my daughter in action, support the entire corps, visit many of our beautiful states, and make valuable friendships and memories.”

“I encourage everyone who has any spare time and an appreciation for the art of music and assisting in the further development of talented performers, to volunteer for this wonderful organization. There are many opportunities to help. I have volunteered for the health team, uniform team, and food service (K-Crew). Veteran volunteers are here to support you and show you the ropes. All you have to do is sign up and be a part of the Pacific Crest family!”

For more information about volunteering for Pacific Crest, click here.

2016 Tour Announced

Pacific Crest’s national tour will extend an additional week in 2016, a total of six weeks outside of California. The corps will be in the Midwest for the first time since 2007!

[Read more…]

Jed Garvey

Photo_GarveyJedJed Garvey
Choreographer and Color Guard Instructor

A resident of Johnson City, Tennessee, JED GARVEY performed with the Glassemen (2009, 2010, 2011), Southeast Independent Winter Guard (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012), Étude Winter Guard (2013) and three-time WGI world class champions Onyx (2014, 2015).

He teaches color guard at Dobyns-Bennett High School in Kingsport, Tennessee, and choreographs for various scholastic and independent programs in Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Georgia, and Texas. In 2015,  Jed served as a choreographer and technician for Spirit of Atlanta Drum and Bugle Corps.

Jed holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English from East Tennessee State University, and works as a literacy coordinator for a non-profit after school program.