Band students around the country recognize Davis High School’s band as one of the premier programs in the country. Recently Davis’ band had the honor to represent the state of Utah in the twenty seventeen Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. Everything seems to be going the way of Davis Band students as of late. A twist in the story happened when it was announced that about half of the students in Davis’s band would no longer be apart of their band program due to the opening of a new high school in the city just south of them. Thickening the plot would be the fact that this new high school, Farmington High School, had hired Brek Mangelson who is currently director of rival band Westlake High School.
“In early October I began giving the position some serious thought. I’ve always respected the Davis and Viewmont band programs having competed against them in marching band on multiple occasions. I love their directors and consider them my friends. I felt good about the interview process and after meeting with Principal Swanson and Mr Wolf, I requested to walk through the new high school. My wife and I felt very good about the school, and community, and I accepted the position,” future Farmington band director Brek Mangelson said.
Now that Mangelson has taken the job, he has made some goals on how far he wants his program to be in it’s inaugural season.
“For the marching band- place at least in the top 3 of whatever class we compete in and qualify for finals at the Bands of America Regional Finals in St. George and California. The concert bands and jazz ensembles will be expected to qualify for their state festivals as well and receive superior ratings,” Mangelson said.
With these competitive goals set for the band Davis’s new band director doesn’t seem to worried about the competition.
“I think we’ll both have strong healthy programs and that’s a good thing to have. Competition can bring out the best and worst in people but I’m confident we’ll both have a mutual respect for each other’s programs,” Davis Band director Michael Crookston said.
Mangelson has now started to organize his new program for its inaugural season.
“Our summer schedule is almost all set. I’m finalizing a Facebook page where people can find out information. I’ve also scheduled a meet and greet at Farmington Jr High on January 17th from 6-8pm in the band room. Come meet me and find out more about the band program at Farmington High School. Our uniform design is really amazing and is being designed by Michael Cessario of The Fred J Miller uniform company. He’s the best in the business. The marching band will march in the Farmington city parade as well as the Days of 47’ Parade in July. Our first field show is going to be centered around our mascot and will be awesome! “Rising from the Ashes” is our working title,” Mangelson said.
With so much to do Brek has made sure to bring some of his staff from Westlake with him to help this new program get started.
“Yes, our brass caption-head, Mark Hartman, will be coming to work with us at Farmington. He’s been with me for 6 years and is one of the best music educators I know. He’s also the Program Director for the Battalion Drum and Bugle Corps. Albert Williams is also coming with me from Westlake to work with the drumline and percussion,” said Mangelson.
Students who will be moving to this new program are obviously nervous but their new director has a message for them.
“All I can say is If you take a chance on me you won’t regret it. If you want to be the “first” of something, now is your chance. Very few people have the opportunity to say they were the first of something let alone be the first to be a part of a brand new school. The words “Farmington” and “amazing band program” are going to become synonymous terms. If you want to be associated with something like that, and claim that you were were “the first” at this school for years to come, now is your chance,” Mangelson said.