District band program growing
Posted on 10/05/2016

In his second year at McMinnville High School (MHS), band director David Barton has been working hard to grow the music program in the McMinnville School District.

Last winter, he started a drive to solicit donations of unused musical instruments so he could widen the reach of music in the district by adding a band program for fifth grade students.

In addition to used instruments that have been cleaned up and reconditioned if necessary, the band got a brand-new flugelhorn. “They are very expensive instruments, and the ones we had are about 30 years old and didn’t work very well,” said Barton. “Getting a new one was like finding a diamond.

“I told some of my band director friends that I got one, and they were so jealous. It’s a big deal.”  The flugelhorn is the only new instrument the band received this year.

Quinn Pomeroy, a senior who’s been playing in band since sixth grade, is this year’s steward of the new flugelhorn.

“I play the flugelhorn in jazz band,” says Pomeroy, who comes in an hour early every day to participate in the early bird class. “It has a mellower sound and works really well in jazz, it mimics a voice and it’s nice behind a singer.”

The new instrument, unlike the old ones, has a trigger and finger hook that allow it to change pitch while playing, he said.  “It’s super nice.”

The purchase of the new flugelhorn was made possible by a grant from William Rutherford through the Oregon Community Foundation.